Office or home working, which is best?
Updated: Jan 18, 2019
Does having the best of both worlds lead to a harmonious and stress free life? There are lots of factors to consider for both sides.
Working in an office encourages conversation, inclusion, participation and motivation and as many other 'ions' you can think of.
In times of stress there's nothing better than a great team to share the workload, offer support and help you to look at the bigger picture. Sharing success or challenges at weekly team meetings keeps motivation and engagement high. Sharing your problem with your team and finding a solution, as someone has usually been there before, takes the pressure off. Celebrating a great piece of work because they know the hard work you put in is sometimes the only thanks you need.
However, with office working comes distraction, people chatting behind you, loud meetings, people talking a bit too loudly on the phone (my personal bug bear is people clicking their pens incessantly, what's that all about).
Finding the balance between being involved and getting work done is a fine line. How can you be friendly and approachable when you're stress free, and on the verge of telling everyone to foxtrot oscar when you have a deadline looming?
Working from home has its own advantages, no commute, no make up, no distractions. Flexible working hours, working in lovely spaces (I'm currently in Tetley Brewery's old building in Leeds enjoying an Americano), freedom to get the job done.
However, working from home can also have it's disadvantages, isolation, procrastination, distractions of just having the TV on in the background for a bit of 'company'. You can actually download cafe sounds if you're really lonely! Plus if you don't establish a routine you can easily work from morning till night without taking a break, eating lunch or even standing up for a bit.
In this digitally connected age there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to do both. Any employers worth their salt should realise the benefits of their team working from home once in a while a) to maybe get a bit of time back b) really focus on the admin side of jobs that they don't have time to do it in office. The feeling of trust this engenders pays dividends in loyalty and hard work. If you don't trust your people to work from home then maybe you have the wrong people - or the wrong boss!