The Blessing and Curse of Telecommuting

The Blessing and Curse of Telecommuting

Yesterday Kelsey Libert wrote an excellent article about maintaining your productivity while working from home. She had really good suggestions for minimizing distractions, handling unexpected visitors and deliveries, and maintaining good communication.

Here is another approach that many of our experts have used..

Let’s take a look at the distractions that can occur when you’re at home — pets and children. While it’s true that minimizing distractions is very important, it’s equally true that you can make them work for you. For example, one of our experts in the Midwest has a dog that sits with him while he works. Fido has learned to be quiet while Xander is working, but this pet knows when it’s noon! Fido nudges Xander’s knee every day at noon to remind him that it’s time for a break and a romp outside.

Children, on the other hand, require more creativity in terms of turning distractions into a positive event. One of our experts in Florida recently shared a great story about her four year old. The little guy wanted Mom to watch a movie with him. She suggested that he watch the movie with his older sister. Georgette went on to explain that she was working on Saturday because she wanted to finish some important work for a customer before leaving for the family’s vacation to Disney World. She took her little boy into the den, called her older girl, and started the movie. After 45 minutes, Georgette’s little boy came to Mom’s office asking, "Have you worked enough to pay for Disney World yet?” It’s funny, right? Georgette asked for more time to finish a particular task and promised to join everyone in the backyard for kickball. She made her son’s interruption a positive event.

Deliveries and visitors require planning. Another expert who lives in a major metropolis explained her solution to the dilemma of delivery people and visitors. For deliveries, and Charlotte orders nearly everything online, she includes instructions with every order regarding how deliveries to her house are to be handled. Charlotte isn’t bothered by delivery people ringing her doorbell. They follow her delivery instructions and she gets her work completed.

Keeping in touch with family, friends, and co-workers is essential when you telecommute. You don’t want to become a hermit. Sally, our virtual assistant, has a terrific solution for reducing unexpected visits.

Sally uses meal times to help her maintain her relationships and social connections. She invites her friends for lunch. Sally schedules lunch two to three times each week with a different friend. Dinner time at Sally’s home is a family affair. Phones, tablets, and other electronic devices are off. Her approach also ensures that she eats regularly and healthfully.

Communication tools are an essential component for telecommuting. While e-mail, text, and video calls can be a great way to stay connected with co-workers, there is always the challenge of remembering where the communication occurred. Did you chat about a particular issue in a text app or was it e-mail or Skype? After several hundred interactions, locating a specific collaboration can be a huge task. Xprtly! Enterprise alleviates all of those challenges because everything — text messages, e-mails, documents, phone calls, and video calls are in one repository!

Moreover Xprtly!, our workforce management and communications platform, not only provides organizations with an internal SMS and Video communications system, but also fully leverages the cloud to manitain your organization's remote management policies. From Xprtly!’s web-portal, management has complete visibility into project activities, employee engagements, and corporate productivity metrics.

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