Morra Aarons Mele recently talked all things work life with Christine Koh over at the Pulse Network. I wanted to jump up from my latop and cheer when Morra reminded us not to put the dreaded air quotes, either literally or with our tone of voice around working from home.
It is so easy to give off that subtle, virtual eye-roll when we speak with distrust about the working from home phenomenon. That’s not to say the privilege does not ever get abused. But it is a two way contract of deliverables and trust that is required for a successful telecommuting or working from home set up.
As Leanne Chase over at Career Life Connection reminds us, “balance is not black and white.” Nor are the tools and motivations for home based work. There are many, many possibilities for why telecommuting or it’s various cousins could be partial or even complete solutions for greater effectiveness and workplace productivity–providing the compact between workplace and employee has been clearly structured and accountabilities articulated. Cali Yost offers a great case study on this at Work+Life Fit today.
Meanwhile, every time we laughingly say, “Oh he’s “working from home” today (wink, wink),” we take another backward step for crucial pieces of the work life reform puzzle. If you’re messing around on those work from home days, you’re shooting not only yourself, but millions of the rest of us in the foot. And as employers, if you’re not setting realistic and empowering parameters, you are not going to get the best you can from your work from home teams.
How do you stay on task and committed on your work from home days? How do you navigate conversations that suggest people who work from home are all (to quote my beloved Brits) ‘skivvers’? How have you established clear arrangements to ensure your teams who are home based are delivering as they should?