Whenever I tell people that I work from home, they get extremely envious. Well, first they make sure I don’t simply make cheap trinkets which are never quite good enough, or mail out leaflets about amazing job opportunities mailing out leaflets. Then, once satisfied that I actually have a proper paying job, they get extremely envious. And quite right too. My husband, who works variously in Novosibirsk, Vladivostok and Krasnodar, greets me sarcastically each afternoon when I wander back into the house from my office in the garage with the words “Good commute?”
Yes, working from home is great. Not only does it save LawCare the cost of an office, but it means that I can go to work in my slippers. I’ve not been to work in my pyjamas yet, but give it time. I can eat lunch with my husband, when he’s home, and I don’t have to take days off to wait for deliveries.
This is supposed to be the part where I launch into the negative side of working from home, so that those of you who commute on an overcrowded train to a stuffy office each day, or spend three hours sat in traffic to reach your poky room above a Chinese takeaway, will banish your envy and purse your lips contentedly, happy that you don’t have to put up with the horrors of spending the entire day under your own roof. Unfortunately, I don’t find many of the supposed drawbacks to be a problem.
It can get lonely with no colleagues to talk to, I’m told, but if I feel the need to talk to a colleague I pick up the telephone, and in the meantime I can get on with my work undisturbed by office chatter about holidays and boyfriends.
Then, some people say, there can be the temptation to work when you shouldn’t – to answer the office phone when you're off duty because you can hear it ringing from the kitchen, for example. Personally, I find it more of a problem when I’m in the office and hear the washing machine in the kitchen beeping and find myself tempted to hang out the washing when I shouldn’t, so it cuts both ways. I once logged onto the LawCare server at half-past midnight to find that Trish was also logged on, but my washing never gets left out in the rain.
One small downside is that when the local schools were closed due to snow recently, and a quarter of the UK workforce were unable to get to work, I had no such excuse. But apart from that, I can’t think of any more downsides to working from home. Let me know if you come up with any. And if you come across any of the downsides of working generally, you know where the LawCare helpline is.
LawCare’s free and confidential helpline is available 9-7.30 Monday-Friday, 10-4 weekends, on:
0800 279 6888 (Solicitors, Law Students and Legal Executives in England and Wales)
0800 279 6869 (Solicitors, Advocates and Law Students in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man)
0800 018 4299 (Barristers, Clerks and Judges in England and Wales)
1800 991801 (Solicitors in the Republic of Ireland)