According to government estimates, one out of every five people works from home at least one day a month. Don’t think you’ve got it made just because you don’t have a boss looking over your shoulder all day. The fact is, you can still get fired from your home office if you fall into these telecommuter traps we read about on AOL .com.
- Don’t let home distractions get in the way of your work. People make the mistake of thinking they can juggle their family life better if they work at home. If customers try to call while you’ve got kids screaming, dogs barking, and a loud TV in the background. you’re going to lose business! You’ll also lose clients – and possibly your job – if your kid accidentally picks up the phone while you’re in the middle of an important conference call!
- Don’t stop being professional just because you work in your slippers. That means you don’t argue with clients on the phone, or hang up on people when another call comes in. Also, don’t make business calls in the middle of eating your lunch. Don’t mail out important documents while you’ve got peanut butter smeared all over your fingers!
- Don’t let your home office lead a double life. In other words, don’t do business on the same computer the rest of your family uses because the last thing you want is to accidentally lose a customer’s personal data, while your teen downloads music or surfs the web! Also, some companies prohibit home offices from being set up in a kitchen or bedroom – where doing work may not be your top priority.
- Don’t forget your telecommuter job is still a job! If you’re expected to be “on duty” from 9 to 5, then keep that schedule at home. Don’t sleep in late every morning, and don’t log off early at night. Also, don’t be off doing laundry when an important phone call comes in and don’t kill time shopping online when you should be contacting clients. Otherwise the next website you click on might be a job hunting site!