Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Day 6: Brrrrrr, Baby it’s Cold Outside

(c) 2016 P. Lynne Designs

o, I have not forgotten to post that leftover Blogmas 2015 blog post last month.  I just went out there to take pictures for this post.  For those of you in the warm 365 days of the year location of your choice, and you know who you are, it may come to a surprise to you, but 8° at 6 am in Columbus, Ohio, USA is brrrrrr cold to me.  It is now a warm 20° outside, and as Columbus Ohioans, we long for the nights when you turn up the air conditioner to max, and you are still hot.  This is around Mid-June to early September, and I still do not understand why it is now frigid cold outside.  Oh, I forgot, we are below Michigan, LOL.  Well, at least, it is not Alaska or the North Pole. 
I forget my driving rules for the winter months every year, but I will be reminded of them when I have my first slip of the back tires, and I am doing it this year blind, meaning I have a new car to test the icy conditions with.  I know how Hondas handle the road, but a Dodge Caliber.  This hatchback is built like the truck line, but how does it handle the icy roads and the crazies that these Columbus streets give?  This is the time where I really put my life in God’s hands. (Not that I do not do it for any other time of the year.)
One of the best things about working from home is I do not have to deal with the morning and afternoon commute to and from work.  In the winter, it is truly a blessing to be able to roll over as many times as needed, and then bounce down the stairs, eat, and start work.   That should be a norm in every workplace, unless you have to see clients.  Not every job is equipped with that kind of power.
So do you want that power to commute in your PJ’s (Pajamas)?  Well it is simple if you take these steps:
1.       First off, find out if it is possible to work from home with your current job.  Not all jobs allow it.  Sometimes it is the nature of the work you do for them, at other times, it is the matter of security and if you are dealing with sensitive material (such as Social security numbers, addresses, health issues).
2.       If you can work from home, give it a trial run.  It may not be for you.  Some companies require that you have a dedicated line to answer calls.  They will have to install this, or some companies ask that you provide that on your own.  Same with a computer.  For that, you cannot mix company files with your own.  No one wants to see a file containing your best Chicken and Rice recipe mixed in with Q2 stats and figures for the company website.  Please ask for another computer, an external drive, cloud or something to keep the head honchoes from seeing 500 pictures of your child’s 3rd birthday last month.
3.       Follow the rules they give you.  Act as if you are in your office.  These rules may include dressing as if you are at the office, no personal calls during working hours, and how long you can take lunch breaks.  Check back with your employer as often as they require, which may involve commuting into the office once or twice a week.
4.       Now is not the time to cancel the babysitter.  In fact, hiring a babysitter to work in your home is the best thing, because the child is in their environment, with their own toys and naptime stuff.  Pay your babysitter accordingly.  Even when the trial period is over with, and you decide to go back to the office, you will already have your babysitter in place.
5.       Before your trial period is over, evaluate the situation.  What did you like about it? What did you hate about it?  Is this better for your family?  Ask your boss for feedback, especially how your productivity was during this time, in comparison to your other evaluations in previous years.   Listen carefully, because this does determine how you get you pay raises as well.

So, how does this compare to what my job is?  Well you just have to wait till tomorrow for the conclusion.