People truly are insatiable. Just when you think that they’ll be happy with the lack of need to commute and the non-micromanagement of bosses, here, they are complaining about a range of things relating to having to work from the comforts of their homes. Sure, we aren’t as stressed as we used to be before the pandemic when working every day in the office, but that doesn’t mean we embrace every facet of this remote work setup. There are still challenges to working from home despite not needing to change into office clothes to meet with clients and give presentations.
It’s not all rainbows and unicorns. It is not a walk in the park. There are so many things that factor into the idea of working from home that you would need to ask yourself: “Do I really want this to be permanent?” The United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) said workers are more productive when they stay outside the conventional office. Still, they also face many problems ranging from having to work longer hours to work-home interference.
Managing Your Time
The biggest challenge to remote work is time management. The concept of “normal business hours” is an efficient management tool. It specifically tells the workers when to work and when to stop working. Setting the alarm at 6 am will signal the beginning of another workday. It puts you in the right frame of mind. The problem with not needing to set your alarm at 6 am is you begin to procrastinate. You sleep in because you watched Netflix the night before. You tell yourself that you’re going to finish the work later, then find yourself in front of your laptop at 11 pm.
Bad Signals, Bad Devices
The premise of remote work is linked to how great your internet signal and computer hardware and devices are. If you cannot hear your client because your speakers malfunction for the nth time, it’s a worrisome development. This is why most companies have decided to shoulder the cost of the equipment the workers need at home. This eliminates the excuse of not having the right devices to attend a teleconference or sign in when needed. As for yourself, you can find a reseller of Plantronics headset, which is designed specifically for professionals, to make working at home a breeze.
How can you switch off from work if you are literally working at home? It is hard to see where the work ends and where the leisure time begins. You’ll find yourself reaching out for your laptop to answer work emails while you watch cartoons with your kids. In the middle of dinner, you’ll be thinking about a report you haven’t concluded yet. The idea of being in office is that you can finally leave work when you get out of those doors. You’re switched off. That is difficult when working in your own home.
That leads to overworking. You do more than what you would be doing in the office. That doesn’t mean it’s bad to pour your heart and soul into your jobs, but it disrupts the normal flow of your day. It takes you away from important family time.
The doorbell is ringing. The dog is barking. There is a pile of dishes in the sink. Everywhere you look in the house, there’s something there that needs your attention, too. How do you work when kids are asking you to play with them? That last one is the hardest of all. Between playing, tutoring, and putting them to bed, you’ll find yourself at your wits’ end.
You will need childcare for the kids. That’s something you cannot deny. You should also make older kids self-sufficient enough that they can entertain themselves as you work. Most of all, you need the commitment of your partner to make this setup work.
Working by yourself at home can take its toll on you. Eventually, you will crave social interactions. You will want to see someone working in a cubicle next to you. Those co-workers you are annoyed with? You might even begin missing them. Humans are social animals, so the lack of social interaction can make them unproductive at home. This is especially true for those living alone.
The work-from-home setup has helped a lot of people stay safe over the course of the pandemic. It is also a new way for parents to be present in their children’s lives or for single individuals to balance life and work. However, these benefits don’t mean the setup lacks challenges. If anything, the more beneficial a work setup is, the more problems it has to address.