So YOU want to try telecommuting?

Try telecommuting? There are a few things you need to know before you head down the telecommuting pathway. Most of these are not written in any policy document. If you want telecommuting to work for your boss – and you need to face this fact, if your boss does not think it will work, then it probably wont -you have to:

Be self motivated – if you are not a self motivated worker (i.e. you need someone to push you each day to get your work done) then don’t try telecommuting. Even as the work load piles up, if you can’t push yourself to work, then you will soon find your boss asking what is happening and questions being asked if you are not just ‘goofing off’ each day.

try telecommuting

“Yes boss – I am working” – you can’t do this if you want to be a great telecommuter!

 

Be highly productive – you will have to produce at a higher level as a telecommuter than you would in an office. You will be measured at a higher level cause you are not seen in the cubical each day. Be prepared to ‘sell’ your productivity back to your boss and work colleagues.

Try telecommuting…are you ready?

Be prepared to work extended hours – you will need to be available well beyond standard office hours, especially if you telecommute from a different time zone. You really can’t force people to work round your office hours – and you will be expected to participate in office meetings when they are held if you try telecommuting.

Don’t be ignored – you will have to work hard to keep your office-bound colleagues aware that you are still an employee and still working hard for the company. You will have to be active in meetings, take on some tasks that cross departments etc. You have to be a better work colleague than you would be in the office if you try telecommuting.

If you think you can handle those aspects, the next step is to find out if your company/organization has a telecommute policy. If they do, you need to become very familiar with the policy and what your responsibilities will be (do you need to provide all your own equipment etc). If they do not have a policy, you might need to suggest to them to have one and use the ones on this site as a template.

Then you are ready to approach your boss about the possibility!