When I left my corporate job, and entered the world of working virtually, there were several perks I knew came with the territory. Who doesn’t love perks?
Today I’m going to share the top 5 perks I expected to benefit from when I began to work virtually. I’ll save the ones that surprised me for another post.
Read on and see if you’d have the same expectations I did when I started this journey.
1. Not having to dress up every day.
I, like many other people (women, especially), tend to be self-conscious about my appearance. Sorting through my closet to find clothes to wear is super stressful for me.
I don’t have that anxiety getting dressed for work anymore. I can wear a blouse I love, dress it up with one of my favorite necklaces (I like big necklaces – who’s with me?), and wear yoga pants. And slippers. And no one cares.
I’m comfortable in my clothing, and not at all worried about my waistline, hemline, or panty line.
Important business meetings I attend aren’t in front of board rooms. They’re held sitting down in front of my computer screen. In my “head shot zone”, I look professional and ready to go. No one needs to know I’m wearing yoga pants from Target instead of slacks from The Limited.
2. Taking the kids to school (and picking them up) every day
Working my corporate job, I usually didn’t get home until after 6:00 p.m. Homework was usually already done, the girls were onto bigger and better things after dinner, and I was generally just on clean-up duty.
Now, I get to have that time every morning helping them prepare for their day, and we get to spend the whole ride home together unwinding from it.
The flexibility is priceless. Being there for my kids and knowing they can depend on me to pick them up and drop them off each day is invaluable.
I expected the benefit of having more flexibility with my family, but I didn’t anticipate how much fuller it would make me feel. It’s definitely the most important perk for me.
3. Working when I’m at my peak performance
Again, it boils down to flexibility. I expected flexibility when I began working virtually. The great thing about being flexible, is I can work when I do my best work.
Believe it or not, not everyone’s creativity or productivity peaks between the hours of 8 – 5. Sometimes I’m up working at 10…11…midnight, because later is when I roll out my best stuff. That would have never have flown in the corporate world.
Another bonus: I get to nap. Instead of trying to dredge my way through that afternoon hit-the-wall period, doping up on caffeine and false motivations, I can take a mid-day siesta and get back to work when I can do better work.
Naps are also perks. Naps are definitely perks.
4. Getting to use my own tools
Working virtually is all about finding what works. I get to choose – and then use – whatever tools help me to be the most efficient.
What works for me doesn’t necessarily work for everyone. And that’s what’s so awesome about the type of work I do: I get to do it in the exact way that works best for me. I can individualize my productivity arsenal and rapid-fire through my work on my own terms.
I don’t have someone training me on a product I’ll never need or a program that’s 15 years behind our industry. I hand-pick the app, tool, or program that will do the job in the way I’ll understand best.
I’m not wasting time submitting a ticket requesting an upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 2007, and waiting for it to be approved in eight different committees before it’s finally relayed to me the company doesn’t see the need for an upgrade right now. Besides, I HAVE A MAC!
I use what I love, what I know, and what works the best for the task I’m using it for.
5. Focusing on my personal growth
If I want to do mid-morning yoga (after all, I’m wearing the pants for it), I don’t have to take two-hours of sick time from my PTO to get a session in.
I don’t have to take an entire personal day to attend a seminar or event. I don’t have to cram my new book in over my lunch hour while I’m slurping my tomato soup.
If I want to take time for personal development, I can just do it, then get right back to work. I can watch that hour-long webinar on something I’ve been wanting to get a better handle on, and then get back to my project.
I can take a little longer in the morning to read my daily devotional and finish my coffee, because I’m not rushing off to a meeting no one wants to be in.
Whatever goals I have set for myself personally, I have the freedom to really focus on achieving them. I’m taking an active part in my own growth on a daily basis, and my work is flourishing as a result.
Those, in a nutshell, are the top 5 perks I expected from working virtually. What about you? Were you expecting any of the same?