Looking on the bright side: the challenges and benefits of working from home

Writer, editor, proofreader, owner/operator - On Time Typing

So, you usually work in a workplace, probably with a number of other people. You don’t only work there; you also socialise and make or continue friendships, you have a quick chat instead of an email, and you may brainstorm ideas over morning tea.

Now, with the social distancing imposed by COVID-19/Coronavirus, anyone who can, is moving their work into their home.

If you are in that situation, there are some challenges of working from a home-based office or workplace that you’ll have to address, such as work-life balance, social isolation from your work peers, and working in a quiet office (or noisy house, as your situation may be) rather than in your usual work environment. You might find it hard to work outside the regime of your usual workplace or without a boss looking over your shoulder. You may be better at face-to-face communications than talking over the phone or via emails or other platforms, so you’ll have to learn improve new skills.

But there are a few benefits to working in a home-based office or workplace, as long as you keep that workplace separate from the rest of your house (e.g. an office with a door, for computer or admin work; or a shed, for craft, manual or mechanical work).

The benefits of working at home, physically separated from your work colleagues, may be:

  • You can determine what sort of environment you work in (e.g. background music or not, neat or messy area)
  • As long as you can close your office door (and keep your family out), there are fewer distractions, you may find it easier to concentrate, and you may work more productively
  • You don’t have to deal with any talkative, time-wasting or even slightly annoying work colleagues, at all
  • If you’re having a ‘bad hair day’ it won’t affect anybody but yourself (or, outside of work, your family).

Can you think of any other benefits of working from home?

Sally-Anne Watson Kane

Writer, editor, proofreader, owner/operator - On Time Typing

Sally-Anne Watson Kane owns and operates On Time Typing (established 2002) and Peewee Press (self-publishing business). Sally-Anne is a professional editor and full member of Institute of Professional Editors (IPEd) Australia, based in Moe, Gippsland. On Time Typing provides: scribing, report writing, minute-taking, transcription, copy writing, editing, proofreading, graphic design, and self-publishing services across Gippsland and Australia.
Sally-Anne manages an Australian-based team of eight typists, scribes, transcriptionists, writers and editors (all subcontractors) including two typists in Gippsland as well as typists, editors and scribes in Melbourne, Central Victoria, Queensland and Northern Territory.

Sally-Anne has 20 years' experience in:
- editing and proofreading publications, websites, policies and reports.
- audio transcription (dictation, transcripts of interviews, focus groups, investigations, hearings).
- recording, transcribing, compiling and self-publishing oral histories and anthologies.
- writing articles, websites, reports and publications
- scribing and writing selection, procurement and referee reports
- providing self-publishing services to authors, businesses and organisations from handwritten manuscript through to printed book stage, including: project planning, budget, typing, editing, proofreading, graphic design, printer liaison.

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