Thursday, March 11th, 2010
Editor’s note: This is a guest post from Evita of Evolving Beings
It seems that as technology expands forward, it is allowing more and more people the freedom to not be tied to a desk at their office any longer.
More and more people are either being approached by their company with an option to work remotely, such as from home, or are themselves suggesting the option to their company.
4 Hour Work Week
“It’s amazing how someone’s IQ seems to double as soon as you give them responsibility and indicate that you trust them.”
- Tim Ferriss author of 4 Hour Work Week
Working from home definitely takes a certain kind of discipline, but I always had this theory that it would make one more productive. Well, after having read “The 4-Hour WorkWeek (Expanded and Updated)” by Timothy Ferriss, and seeing my husband do it, I am even more convinced. In the book Timothy explains how, just because you are at work, does not mean you are actually working and how much more productive one can actually be through telecommuting.
It is actually too bad that more companies are not open to embracing this approach because it could prove very beneficial for both the employers and the employees.
For starters, it can greatly cut down on costs. Less employees in the office equals less desks, which equals less space needed. This in turn tremendously lowers rent costs.
Overall facility costs can also be significantly decreased. These take into account various bills for the company like electrical, heating, and air conditioning. Some companies also provide small treats or stationary items for their employees, and even those may be small expenses, in the end it all adds up.
As for benefiting from decreased costs, it is not just for the employers. Employees who work from home normally save on the transit they would be paying for, work attire and food on the go. These costs quickly accumulate for an employee, to the point that working from home can translate to an immediate pay raise, based on all the money the employee is saving. And of course a happier employee, results normally in a more productive employee.
On the topic of happiness, studies have also found that employees who work from home are actually happier, healthier and more productive.
A 2007 study by the American Psychological Association, found favorable effects on perceived autonomy, work–family conflict, job satisfaction, performance, turnover intent, and stress. Another study in 2008 by CompTIA Research found that 67% of companies polled said employees were more productive, just from cutting back on the commute to and from work.
Where health and happiness is concerned, not going into the office protects and benefits the employee in many ways. First off they most likely get to avoid a normally stressful morning routine, commute to and from work, and work environment. Secondly, working from home normally increases the amount of home cooked meals or just more balanced meals eaten. Most employees will be able to get more sleep as well. This all, as well as decreased exposure to others, decreases chances of infections and sick days, while increasing the general level of happiness. In the end, it results in a win-win situation for both employee and employer.
At a time where our awareness for being environmentally conscious is growing, our discussion would not be complete without also considering the environmental benefits from telecommuting. Less people traveling on the roads naturally decreases the greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation that would be used. On a national or global scale, this can quickly add up and make a huge difference where the state of our climate is concerned.
Why More Companies don’t Offer Tele-commuting
So by now you may be wondering – “if it is so good, why don’t more companies go that route?”
For starters, not all jobs can be done remotely. Some obviously require the employee to be physically present.
However for those who can work remotely, the biggest road block why more companies don’t take advantage of this type of work environment, seems to be the old stereotype that still hinders many companies. And that is, that their employees will slack off at home or need to be monitored. The truth is normally very different.
Most people who work from home actually feel more compelled to prove themselves in that they do not need to be monitored, and thus deliver better results, not to mention how much wasted time they avoid. This alongside the mentioned benefits above, can mean a very logical decision in the end for a company who wants to increase its own, and its employees happiness.
Evita’s next post will explain how to apply 5 important rules when telecommuting.
Do you work from home?
What are the advantages and disadvantages when telecommuting?
Evita Ochel, B.Sc., B.Ed., CHN – is the main author of EvolvingBeings.com where she writes about spiritual and personal development. She hopes to inspire people, to truly live out the life of their dreams and awaken the highest version of themselves. She is also the main author of EvolvingWellness.com where she writes about nutritional science and holistic health for optimal health and longevity. Learn more about Evita Ochel or Follow Evita Ochel on Twitter.
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Image courtesy of Scott Adams