Pros and cons of working from home

Many people have been on holidays and traveling this month. Many blogs have not been updated so frequently these lazy summer days because their authors are busy doing holiday stuff and having fun. And me… I am writing a post about working because that’s what I’ve been doing all summer!!

I started working from home over 8 months ago and can now talk about the advantages and disadvantages of the “home office”. Let’s see them! Remember, though, that I am not a freelancer, I work full time for a company, so my experience might be different from that of freelancers.

From Nico's point of view.

My humble home office. This pic is from a few months ago, now it’s messier!

PROS

  • Freedom! When I am not busy I can do other things, like updating my blog or going to the grocery store downstairs.
  • I don’t have to waste time commuting. This is a big yay.
  • I don’t even have to get dressed if I don’t want to! I do, though. I wear old “at-home” clothes while my nice clothes are bored in the wardrobe.
  • I lost weight! Most days I cook at home and I do simple meals of vegetables or grilled meat or fish. I use very little oil and salt so I guess I’m way healthier now compared to last year, when I ate in restaurants and food courts all the time. Also, when I eat outside I feel compelled to finish everything because I hate wasting food. When I’m home I just put leftovers in the fridge and eat them next time.
  • My dog doesn’t have to spend all day alone at home any more. I can also walk her several times a day.
  • I am away from “office politics” and I don’t hear people complaining about bosses, rumours about who did what, gossips… I hate drama so this is also a big perk.
  • I can listen to music without headphones while I’m working and sing my lungs out.
  • I can still keep in touch with my colleagues in the Shenzhen office through QQ instant messaging (we have dozens of work groups and also off topic conversations).
  • I am saving a ton of money. I don’t need to buy new clothes or shoes, cooking at home is cheaper, zero transportation costs.
  • I feel important. I mean, the company has to trust me to let me work from home, right?
Apart from Nico, I have other companions: the flowers that I receive every Monday! It's a subscription thingie that C. got for me. These are last week's lilies.

Apart from Nico, I have other companions: the flowers that I receive every Monday! It’s a subscription thingie that C. got for me. These are last week’s lilies.

CONS

  • It can get lonely. I am basically alone all day, with the dog as my only companion. If I don’t go to the store, C. might the only person I talk to during the whole day (unless some neighbour or the building cleaning lady talks to me).
  • It can get boring. In an office, when you are not busy, you can go to the kitchen area and start a conversation with someone. You can also have lunch with other people every day.
  • It can get lazy. If I didn’t have the dog I wouldn’t leave the apartment much (and I guess I wouldn’t have lost as much weight if I spent all day sitting).
  • I cannot join any of the team activities, meetings, etc. Sometimes they can be very boring, but they are also a way of bonding with colleagues.
  • There is basically no chance for career advancement. The logical path for me would be to become a team lead or a project manager, but I cannot do that from home.
Dinner with my colleagues last month in Hong Kong. I miss having lunch with people sometimes.

Dinner with my colleagues last month in Hong Kong. I miss having lunch with people sometimes.

The last con is very important, but for the moment I am happy doing what I am doing, and I enjoy being at home. So, for now, pros win the battle!

Have you ever worked from home? What do you like and dislike about it?

 

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