Remote work can help companies save on the cost of office space, benefits and training. Despite these savings, large companies such as IBM, Aetna and Bank of America began to scale back remote employees in May 2017. Employers are not the only ones who deal with the challenges of telecommuting, since employees might begin to realize that they're not cut out for this type of arrangement. Find out if you're one of these people.
Remote work requires intense concentration. Even though you're working from home or in a trendy cafe sipping an espresso, you still must pay close attention to work details and respond quickly to any issues. If you're working from home, children, pets, family members or roommates may cause major distractions intentionally or unintentionally.
Having easy access to the internet might also distract you. When you receive personal messages on social media or in your inbox, you might be tempted to look and respond, which is a waste of time. Remote work might hinder your productivity, especially if you're used to having a full-time supervisor.
Video conferencing and conference calls offer a way to talk to your teammates when you have a remote work situation. However, this can lessen the camaraderie and community feeling you get when you're on a team. A desire to boost the social aspect and collaborative efforts of everyone on a dedicated team are two reasons why IBM eliminated telecommuters who work from home.
3. Feelings of Loneliness
Similar to disconnectedness, a feeling of loneliness is common when you work from home. Introverts may love the peace and quiet a home office provides. If you're an extrovert, this arrangement might not be the best idea. Extroverts typically thrive on being around other people. Although working from home offers great flexibility, you may miss the feelings of accomplishment, praise and positive feedback you get from being around your teammates. Your co-workers might also provide encouragement and solutions when you have a problem to solve.
4. Never Truly Leaving Work
Working from home could lead to spending less time with your family and loved ones, since work is always just a few steps away. While your productivity increases, you might actually increase stress and burnout because there's always a nagging feeling that you can always get more done. Working from an outside office lets you leave your work behind in the evenings and on weekends, and that leaves you more refreshed and ready to tackle 40 hours of work per week.
5. Lack of Promotions
Promotions happen when you are visibly present for work. Higher-ups need to see you at the office to gain a sense of trust in your work ethic. Remote work hinders your chances for earning promotions. If you want to climb the corporate ladder with an employer, telecommuting might not be for you.
Remote work can benefit you and your company. However, this arrangement may offer more disappointments than rewards if you're not cut out for it. What pros and cons do you consider when it comes to telecommuting?