How To Telecommute
How To Telecommute
Admit it: you want to work at home. Of course you do. You just can't figure out how to do it, right? Well, now you can, with VideoJug's guide to becoming a telecommuter.
Step 1: It's Not About You
When it comes to making a proposal to your boss about telecommuting, it's all about your boss and your company. Give your boss reasons to WANT you to telecommute. Put together a polished, professional proposal about your increased productivity. Demonstrate how you'll save the company money. You may want to mention that if you work from home, you can help your company reduce real estate costs and other expenses,. Allowing you to telecommute may even make you more accessible to clients. Just don't talk about how it'll be nice to not have to get up early anymore.
Step 2: Make Yourself Available
Remember, your boss is likely terrified that you'll just check out if you become a telecommuter. Reassure him or her by making yourself constantly available. Give your boss and all other relevant parties cell phone, home office, and home phone numbers, as well as email, IM, and fax information. And be prepared to answer at least one of these at all times. Too much for you? Address your "business hours" in your proposal by setting times you'll promise to be available.
Step 3: Get Dedicated
Show your boss you mean business by presenting your dedicated home office arrangement in your proposal. A home office phone line, a fax line, a secure, high-speed Internet connection, a file back-up system, and a door you can close against distractions are all good arguments for letting you work at home. To really push it over the edge, include an unlimited long-distance plan, an arrangement for sending and receiving large digital files, licensed copies of all software you'll need, and a plan to access your company's network from home. If you need your employer to provide any equipment or support, make sure you address it in your proposal so that there are no surprises down the line if your boss says "yes."
Step 4: Baby Steps
Start small. Propose working from home one or two days a week at first, and then revisit the question at the end of a trial period of three to six months. Avoid making Monday or Friday your work-at-home day - it'll seem like you're taking a long weekend, even if you aren't. And let your boss know that you'll definitely come into the office for important meetings or team events, even if it's one of your telecommute days. Remember, scheduling regular lunches or face-to-face meetings with colleagues can help you stay in the mix, even if you're not in the office every day.
Step 5: Make It Work
Once your boss signs off on your plan, put it into action as quickly and seamlessly as possible. Keep your promises, stay efficient and productive, and don't make your boss regret his or her decision.