01 October 2012

Working partially remotely

One of the good things about my shiny, new job is that I work partially remotely. Part of the week I work from my home office and part of the week I work in the company office.

Working from home is not a new concept to me, so that wasn't a big deal. The transition I had to make was working from home only part of the week. Not only do I have to shift mentalities based on where I'm working that day, but I have to make sure I prioritize my task lists in a way that uses my time wisely based on where I'm working that day.

Working from home

The days I work from home are usually more productive in terms of actual writing work. Since I'm not in the office there are fewer distractions. I may have phone meetings, but most of the days are spent creating words and rearranging them. The team is always just a phone call, email or IM away if needed, but those days are quiet days of work.

Working in the office

The days I work in the office are the days I touch base with my supervisor and team and go to meetings. These are also organizational days. One of my days in the office is always at the beginning of the week (Monday or Tuesday, usually), so I get my weekly task lists in order, find out what everyone else is doing for the week, and make sure I have what I need to work from home on my remote days. Sometimes that means interviewing a coworker or doing research, other times that means getting materials together and having a one-on-one meeting with my boss.

When I was freelancing, I had to prioritize projects, stay on track with deadlines and make sure I had what I needed from clients in order to get work done. The same is true in my current job, but now I have the added benefit of being able to touch base with team members and coworkers to help me.

I haven't been at my shiny, new job very long, but I think working partially remotely is more of a challenge than being in the office all the time or at home all the time. Like anything else, it's about finding a balance that works for you, as well as staying organized, but shifting your mindset a few times a week can be difficult sometimes. (Not to mention getting used to writing with my shoes on....) But I'm glad I have the schedule I do. I like being able to have days at home to devote to writing, and I like having days in the office to connect with the team and get organized.

What are the benefits and drawbacks of your work schedule?

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