Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Working from home

I've posted information before about my schedule before, this week is different. This week I've spent the last two days and will spend today working from home. This is typical for me, busy days away at customers, then a few days here catching up on "desk" work. But I thought I'd explain what working from home is like.

Typically, I get up before 7am and fix me some breakfast and coffee (see yesterday's comments about coffee). Then I start work by reviewing any emails that came in overnight (typically 5-10, most of which are garbage) and responding as necessary. I turn on my "radio" to the local conservative Christian talk radio show to listen to the news (I listen online). Depending on my workload, I'll occasionally turn it down if I need to call anyone or take calls.

Somewhere around 9am, I'll take a break and actually get dressed. Working in my footy jammies after 9am just isn't a good thing (it's good I don't do video conferencing).

I'll take conference calls and make calls most of the day, typically stopping for lunch around 11:30-12:30. Some days I'll have a conference call during that time. Other days, I'll eat lunch at my desk while I work. The afternoon is pretty much the same.

Around 5pm, most of the calls die down. Sometimes, the folks on the left coast schedule calls late, so I'll get on the phone again as required. And I'll do emails and desk work until I'm finished. Then I'll check email again before I head to bed.

Everyone tells me that they envy working from home. I'm here to tell you that it ain't that great. The commute is short and the requirements for attire are easy. But it's lonely and the work day typically is longer.

Now for the heart-felt part. I like working from home. It gives me a lot of flexibility. But some days I long for the times of being in a cubicle farm, being able to make comments to others and going to lunch with colleagues. It's a true mixed bag.


4simpsons said...

"Working in my footy jammies after 9am just isn't a good thing"

Now how am I supposed to get that image out of my head?!

Thanks for sharing that. I work from home a day or so per week and used to do it much more when at HP. I hated the conference calls, but better at home than at work.

It sounds like you are very disciplined! That is one of the hard things about working from home. Though I often get more done here.

Brooke said...

There's a lot to be said for not having someone constantly over your shoulder. That's a good thing!

Randy said...

Neil, some days the discipline is easier than others (as I'm sure you know). Blogs tend to get in the way of real work sometimes...

Brooke, you're right, but fortunately, it's been a long time since I was in a job with someone looking over my shoulder. Not sure I could stand it again.

Ashley Beth said...

My company is trying to implement Flexible scheduling with some options to work from home. Does your company have rules about your "office"? How do they keep track of your productivity?

Randy said...

A lot depends on the job type and the manager involved. Some job types are not allowed to work from home. Fortunately, I'm not in that job type.

I have very few constraints and no real tracking of my productivity. Some of my co-workers would quickly report me if I wasn't being productive.

Sorry, that doesn't help much