Working from home Vs the office?

This morning I woke up to a beautiful white covering of snow – between two to three inches – see my back garden below.

When I took a quick look at the surrounding roads I found a van stuck fast and several cars backed up and sliding all over the place. I took the decision to work from home rather than spend two hours in the car getting frustrated.

Yesterday, I was also working from home, writing a new business proposal and I seriously believe I couldn’t have got it completed if I had been in the office. All of this chaos has got me thinking. Is a PRO or marketer more efficient working from home than at work?

Personally, I think I am more effective at home when I have a detailed project to write and plan out but I prefer being at work because of the social interaction and sharing of ideas. However, in my company we use social networking tools like Yammer and Skype while we work, so we tend to have regular teleconferences and send each other instant messages, so often it feels like you are in the office anyway.

So here’s my question: are PROs/marketers more efficient when working from home? Or does it depend on the project and the responsibility level they are working at?

I would be genuinely interested to hear what people think.

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Posted By Chris Norton

Chris is listed in the world's top 30 PR bloggers and a regular conference speaker on crisis management and social media marketing. He is also co-author of Share This Too and lectures on digital communications at Leeds Metropolitan University.


Sebastian Mysko

Nice post mate. Sorry if I’m stating the obvious, but I reckon it’s all down to the individual.
Since leaving Wolfstar I spend my weeks working between home and London, and of course the national express trains that get me from A to B. Our team is big on all levels of communication, but Skype and Aim are the definitely the most popular.
I find the working from home debate fairly ironic. When you’re in an office with a cool atmosphere, the ideas flow, banter levels are high and the team strengthens on daily basis. But take away that banter, at least face-to-face and you’ll probably get the job done in half the time.
First and foremost, in order to work from home you must love what you do – and discipline is massive too. If you find yourself bored, or know you could do better, I’d imagine you’re on a slippery slope back to student TV and you’ll probably find a P45 in the post.
Also, another obvious point is the communication. I’ve found that if I haven’t spoken to someone in a few days, I’ll just knock up a quick bullet-point email highlighting where we’re at, even if it’s not totally relevant to them. Keeping everybody in loop has played a major part in getting our team to where it is now.
I think I could go on about this all night… or maybe I should write a book… but no-one who buy it… so I’ll leave it there for now. All I’d like to say is, I hope Stuart doesn’t clock the fact you’re building Snowmen during the 9 to 5…;)

Ian Green

I try to spend one day a week working from home. It allows me to concentrate on the bigger projects – new business pitches, new product development and new business campaigns.
However, I cherish my time in the office working with colleagues and stewing up some great creative ideas.
But sometimes its just nice to work in your pyjamas at the kitchen table.

Chris Norton

Thanks Seb – I think I agree with you it is down to the individual and their motivation.
BTW -I didn’t build the snowman my wife and little boy did.
@Ian Green – thanks for your comments I have been following you on Twitter for a while and noticed you worked from home.
I agree with you I think 1-2 days a week is enough but anymore than that and I would lose the banter and not benefit from the creative ideas.

Sebastian Mysko

Ian… while we’re confessing… my lady came home from work at 7pm last week to find me still in my PJs sat at my desk. She said the only thing that’d changed since 8am was I was drinking water, not coffee….

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