Would you love to be able to work at home? While teleworking and at-home businesses are more commonplace than ever, there are plenty of employers (and even employees) that haven’t jumped on the out-of-office bandwagon out of fear that it will negatively impact productivity. It turns out they have little to worry about. Studies show that employees are more productive when they’re working from their couch instead of their cubicles.
Nicholas Brown, an economics professor with Stanford University, spent last year studying the effects of teleworking versus office working at a Chinese company called Ctrip. After nine months of research and following workers closely, Brown found that at-home employees weren’t just matching the productivity levels of office workers – they were surpassing them.
About 10% of the workforce in the United States works regularly from home (this number includes both teleworkers and stay-at-home employees) and the numbers continue to rise each passing year. Yet many employers are fearful of letting teleworking become a regular part of the company. There is still a popular belief that employees will be doing anything but working if they are out of the office. However, Brown’s findings are just one step in moving toward a more accepting attitude toward teleworking.
Obviously, plenty of entrepreneurs and freelancers work from home and are plenty productive, giving tons of proof that this can work. However, there is some validity to the naysayers’ beliefs, so teleworking really becomes a matter of preference. Some people thrive in their own element while others simply cannot concentrate without an office to go to.
Forbes Magazine offers some suggestions in figuring out if working from home would work from you, and their advice is beneficial. But it’s important for both employers and employees to remember: if you want to do the work you will, no matter where you are doing it.