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How to Persuade Your Boss to Let You Work Remotely

by Kylie Ora Lobell
freelancing, money & life

Photo Credit: Vadim Sherbakov

For many American workers, having to go into the office every day is a burden.

All too frequently, we’re frustrated with long commutes, distracted by employee chatter, sick of the long hours, or upset that our bosses are constantly looming over our shoulders. Most of us just want more freedom with our schedules, and to decide when we spend time working.

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There are a plethora of reasons why many people would rather work from a coffee shop or at home. If you’re one of the millions of workers out there who would prefer to do the same, the first step is convincing your boss that this would be a positive situation for everyone involved.

Need some help figuring out your best plan of action? Here are a few ways to persuade your boss to let you work remotely, from wherever you please.

Do a Test Run

Asking for a full-time work at home schedule is not going to be your best bet.

Instead, ask for one day a week to start and schedule it when little activity is occurring in the office. For example, if you have a weekly meeting on Wednesdays, it wouldn’t make sense to work at home then.

Gradually, you can increase it to two, three, four, and five days a week. You have to show your boss that you’re not going to be any less productive before he or she allows you to work remotely all the time.

Come Equipped With Solid Proof

Your boss might not be able to take your word for it that working from home is going to help his or her company.

Instead, look up case studies—like this report from Harvard Business Review—which showed that when employees worked remotely, they were 13.5 percent more productive than their coworkers in the office.

Plus, their company saved money by not giving them dedicated office space and furniture. Make sure you emphasize the benefits to your boss, and how working from home will improve the business in the short and long term. During your test run, remember to track your hours and compare your productivity levels at home to your time in the office.

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Suggest Technological Solutions For Your Absence

Nowadays, you don’t need to physically be in the office, because most work is done electronically anyway.

Work Remotely

Your boss may not be aware of platforms that will allow you to fully participate in meetings, track your hours, and edit, organize, and collaborate on documents with your coworkers. If you go to your boss with a few different ideas of platforms and software your company can utilize to promote working remotely, he or she may be more receptive to your remote working proposition.

Eliminate Any Doubt

Understandably, your boss might be worried that you’re not going to be able to get anything done at home.

To dispel this doubt, reassure your boss that you will not be taking care of your children during dedicated work hours, that you can access your company’s documents, that you will have high-speed internet at all times, and that if you’re unreachable by email, he or she can call your cell or home phone.

Come up with a set number of hours you’re prepared to work each day, or the amount of tasks you’ll complete on a daily basis. Tell your boss that if the arrangement isn’t working after a certain amount of time, you’ll be happy to re-evaluate and come up with a better solution for you both.

When you meet with your boss, emphasize the positives and praise your company. Tell him or her that you want to get more done, and believe that working from home is the best way to achieve higher levels of productivity. Put yourself in his or her position, and create a list of any questions that might come up.

If your goal is to roll out of bed and be at work, it is possible. Give it some time, and be patient.

By doing a little research, being flexible with your boss, working extra hard, and sticking to your convictions, you can end up with a full-time work at home schedule.

Want to swing your own remote working arrangement? Join Work Remotely: Thrive in a Job From Home with Darren Murph.

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Kylie Ora Lobell

Kylie Ora Lobell writes for brands, blogs, and print publications. She covers content marketing, digital marketing, and runs Kylie's Tips for Writers, a blog about writing.