The current state of technology is prompting more people than ever to consider working from home — not just as a remote worker, but even sometimes as their own boss. Despite the initial intrigue, many people are, understandably, apprehensive about following through. Unfortunately, there are plenty of naysayers (sometimes people who just couldn’t hack it at their own home-based business ventures), and they fly the flag of skepticism high.
Those who have never tried to succeed in their own home-based business might forget to take this negativity with a grain of salt. They might forget the perks that come with being your own boss. They might not realize that e-commerce and online businesses (usually the type you do from home) are enjoying record sales, or that remote work is fast becoming the new “norm.”
If you’re on the fence about working from home — whether that means starting your own home-based business or just working remotely — it helps to look at the underlying myths that scare people off in the first place, as well as the positive elements that entice people to stay. We’ll be focusing more on the former, but in doing so will help illuminate the latter.
Here are three common myths about freelancing, telecommuting, and working from home.
1. You don’t get as much work done
One of the most overused arguments against working from home is that, because you’re in the comfort of your house instead of an office, your productivity will drop radically. While this can be true for some individuals, it has less to do with physical location and more to do with your personal traits, quirks, and individual work ethic.
Individuals in an office have many opportunities to welcome distractions as well; social media, music, Youtube, podcasts — even the person sitting next to them — can all get in the way of focus. In fact, the business world’s recognition of telecommunication as one the largest growing workplace trends is in support of working from home. Experts believe that 50 percent of the workforce could be telecommuting by 2020.
Whether you’re working in an office or your living room, it’s your own dedication, organization, and work ethic that will determine your success.
2. You can work from wherever you feel like, whenever
Most people think that since they freelance or work from home that they’ll be able to work from anywhere, and that they’ll be able to do it whenever they want. This is usually only true to an extent. It istrue you can work from, generally, wherever.
“We work from hotels, parks, cafes, restaurants, airplanes, libraries, pools, beaches, rooftops, nail salons — the list goes on and on,” says Maren Donovan in an interview with Business News Daily. “A portable Internet device is by far a nomadic [virtual worker’s] best friend, as the whole world becomes your office.”
However, it’s extremely important to remember flex time usually still involves “core time”. According to Wikipedia, “flextime typically involves a ‘core’ period of the day during which employees are required to be at work (e.g., between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.), and a ‘bandwidth’ period within which all required hours must be worked (e.g., between 5:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.).”
A lot of companies have this core time to maintain a semblance of unity in an organization’s work schedule. Keep this in mind, as well as the fact that your environment plays a role in your focus and success. It’s up to you recognize whether a coffee shop is too busy or distracting for you to work in — the fact is, some people can’tget work done in certain places they’d like to work.
3. Freelancing and working from home is less stressful
A lot of people feel like becoming their own boss, or at the very least putting distance between their bosses and themselves, will help them lead less stressful lives. Unfortunately, this simply isn’t the truth. Working from home, and especially taking on the responsibilities of freelancing, can bring about their own types of stress.
Jon Lee, CEO & Founder at Rabbut, mentions in a post on Kununu, why this is a common misconception:
“It makes sense given that there’s a lot more freedom than the traditional 9–5 workplace, but it’s precisely that freedom that makes working from home stressful. Distractions come easily and because there’s nobody to supervise, it’s becomes easy to get side-tracked — most of the time, you’ll find yourself working until wee hours struggling to meet deadlines.”
Lee also mentions that there’s an additional, psychological factor.
“You’ll start worrying about how others at work will perceive you. Do they think I’m lazy? Do they think that I’m working hard? You’ll find that yourself justifying to others the amount of time you’ve spent working on a particular task because you feel guilty for having that extra freedom in the first place.”
There truly is just as much stress in working from home as there is in working from the office. Remember, though, just because you may have failed before, or aren’t feeling like you’re succeeding working from home now, doesn’t mean you can’t tweak a few things and try again. That’s how you learnfrom and find the value of failure in business.
While there are some critics who will alwaysoppose it, as well as individuals who will spread misinformation, hope is not lost. If you have the work ethic and care enough to seek out the correct information, you should have no problem getting started working from home.