Freelancing for a Living

Five Telecommuting Misconceptions Revealed

Written by Charles Mburugu for Gaebler Ventures

Avoid the stress of early mornings and commuting! Work at home in your shorts! Set your hours! Keep the children close to you! All these sound great. It is true that working at home has its advantages. For many individuals, telecommuting helps them avoid commuting, set flexible hours and spend more time with their children. But these are not guaranteed. Before venturing into the unknown waters of telecommuting, it is important that one is aware of the many misconceptions about the whole idea of working from home.

Telecommuting has its own problems and it is important to understand the truth about working at home.

For aspiring freelancers, the best way to succeed in telecommuting is to get into the situation with a comprehensive understanding about its advantages and disadvantages. The better you are prepared to face these disadvantages, the more successful and less discouraged you will be. Below are some of the major misconceptions about telecommuting.

The telecommuting life is hassle-free

It is true that telecommuting solves hassles such as rushed mornings getting ready for work or commuting. However, it may create new hassles such as nosey neighbors who don't know you are working, crashing computers, blurred boundaries between work life and private life, and employers who think you can work any time because you live at your office. It is crucial to take a look at the consequences of working from home before jumping into it.

When telecommuting you don't have to deal with office politics or colleagues

This may be true, but if you cut links with the office, you will likely cut links with your job as well. Constant contact with the office is mandatory not only to ensure that you are working on the required projects, but also to update your employer and others of the progress made. Occasionally, it may be necessary to stop by the office and attend events and meetings.

Telecommuting removes the need for childcare

Though some telecommuters can work with the children present, parenting and working are difficult to handle simultaneously. In addition, some employers will inquire about your childcare plans before allowing you to work at home.

You can work for however long you want, whenever you want

Telecommuting may enable one to have a flexible schedule, but this is not always the case. Many companies will require you to work beyond the normal business hours. Some telecommuting jobs such as telemarketing or customer service may demand that you work weekends and evenings.

Telecommuting enables one to work without distraction

Only highly focused people have the ability of working anywhere without distraction, including at home. Working at home cuts off office gossip and other things that waste time. However, it opens the door to new sources of distraction such as the refrigerator, the children and the television. In addition, household chores like doing laundry, running to the bank and paying bills take up much more time than people would expect.

Charles Mburugu writes for us from his home in Nairobi. He has a graduate degree in Business Management from Kenya Institute of Management. He is interested in writing about branding, CSR and intellectual property.

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