Things You Should Know About WFA (Work from Anywhere)
Working from anywhere (WFA) sounds like a dream to most people, but there are some considerations that are important to note if you want to make it a part of your routine. In this post, I’ll look at seven things you should know about WFA.
In this article:
You Shouldn’t Stay at Home In You Pajamas
One of my pet peeves is when people try to tell others one of the best parts of the WFA lifestyle: you get to work from your bed, and you don’t even need to put on proper work clothes. The reason it bugs me is that its terrible advice.
Did you ever think about the reason why offices require their workers to dress up in the first place? It’s because dressing like a professional and heading to a designated workspace puts you in the mood for work! And WFA workers need that mood boost more than anyone.
So even though you can technically work, however, and wherever you want, if you embrace WFA, I’d highly recommend creating your own workplace with a high degree of professionalism.
You Need Willpower
No one makes you do anything during WFA work hours. Even for some people who think of themselves as strong-willed, that can be quite the temptation to slack off.
To keep your workflow up and please clients, you’ll need a massive amount of willpower. It gets easier once you fall into a rhythm, but it’s something WFA newbies should definitely be aware of. If you have a weak willpower, you may actually prefer the stricter guidance an office provides.
Maintaining Clients is Hard
You’ll have to work hard to keep clients. Many people who don’t have experience with PR and client relations don’t realize how much time and effort the administration at an office has to spend on them. Are you ready to take on those responsibilities yourself.
As a WFA veteran, I’ve had many clients who were immense pains but whom I had to deal with anyway. In fact, I had to put aside my pride and treat them like my favorite customers by tending to all their business needs. And believe me, it took time that I was not able to bill.
It’s More Freeform
Most offices have strict style guidelines, and maybe even a checklist of specific tasks workers have to adhere to during their duties. WFA workers don’t have that.
Sure, clients often provide a few specifications, but they almost certainly won’t give you a long list of technical requirements. Instead, you’ll have to use your own best judgment to determine what is best for the project and hope you get it right.
This more creative approach might sound like a good thing to some people, but others prefer detailed instructions.
You Won’t Socialize as Much
If you’re working from home or a quiet coffee shop, you simply won’t have the opportunity to socialize as much. Not only will you miss out on the office gossip and water cooler hangouts, but you won’t be forced to get out into the community during your commute.
WFA pros usually counter the lack of workplace socialization by jumping into as many social activities as possible during their free time. That’s almost a job in itself, though, and you should ask yourself if you’re ready to take it on.
You’ll Handle Every Department
As an office worker, you get to focus on your department and let others take care of the rest of the job. With WFA, you have to tend to every department; invoicing, payroll, PR, IT, office events, and HR. In other words, you sort of need to be a jack of all trades.
The upside of the arrangement is that you get to make all the company decisions, and the workplace ends up fitting you like a tailored glove. The downside is that you have to wear that glove at all times, even if it’s making you uncomfortable.
It’s Not For Everyone
WFA is a significant lifestyle shift, and it’s not for everyone. It requires an entirely different set of skills than working for someone else, and that’s not even considering the specific skillset required for your profession.
Take this short quiz to see if WFA is for you.
People thinking about getting into WFA should consider it carefully because it is not like just taking an office job and adding more freedom.
If you feel you can handle the things I’ve outlined in this post, there’s a good chance you’ll love WFA. I know that I personally have never looked back since I untethered myself from the office many years ago, and I would love for you to join me.