Ever wondered what it was like to work from home (WFH)? Wish granted! In line with the social distancing measures posed by the Government, most of the Singaporeans are now working from home. It allows you to earn Singaporean dollars despite being in your pajamas. However, what most people do not know is that this perk come with a price.
Your ability to glide through the setbacks of the home office depends on your personality. For instance, people who are disciplined or conscientious can easily work through the domestic tides. While, people who are procrastinators or crammers may have a hard time fighting the distractions at home. On that note, here are the light and dark sides of WFH.
It goes without saying that WFH enables you to become your own boss. Without a manager in sight, your deeply rooted passion will motivate you to be creative and productive. You make your own schedule and rules. To illustrate this, a 2014 Stanford University study allowed call-center employees to WFH.
Graduate student James Liang and his Economics professor allowed Ctrip’s employees the opportunity to work from home in a period of 9 months. Ctrip is a travel website owned by Liang himself. The study found that the remote employees had higher productivity levels (13.5%) and lower chances of quitting (50%) compared to their counterparts. Moreover, these remote employees reported that they are happier with their job. Imagine the output that satisfied employees produce!
According to Liang and his professor, the positive results may be attributed to the quieter space that the employees created for themselves. You are free to paint the walls blue or to have classical music on the background as you freshen up your own working environment.
Apart from that, setting your own work hours enables you to do more of the things you want such as baking or teaching your children how to read. You may also initiate a video conference with your workmates whom you miss.
As with everything, there are two sides of a coin. A pervasive drawback of WFH is the vulnerability to distractions such as noisy family members, accessible electronic devices, and abundant chores. Chores do not seem to end for some reason!
There is a considerable lack of separation between work and home during the initial stages of having a home office. Based on personal experience, there were days when I worked beyond my designated hours. The absence of a management enforcing strict working time may add to the pressure of grinding endlessly. Case and point, I work on weekends too.
Higher utility costs is inevitable if you barely leave your house. Lastly, you may experience negative states as you were plucked from the “interpersonal office environment”. I am referring to feelings of isolation, depression, and loneliness. This can be prevented if you stay in touch with your co-workers.
The current situation opens our eyes to the wonders and the unpleasantness of working from home. Comparisons aside, accepting the reality and working with your at-home environment will enable you to embrace the work-from-home structure.