During the pandemic, working from home has become the new norm. Though reluctant at first, employees have learned to appreciate flexible hours, lack of commute, and more time with their families. But today, an increasing number of employers are eager to drive their workers back to the office.
Some workers are welcoming the change. Many people reported feeling lonely and uncomfortable without meeting colleagues every week during the past two years. But others would prefer things to remain as they are and continue working from home.
If you and your boss are not on the same page about this sensitive question, it might make you think of changing jobs. But beware of jumping in at the deep end. Use an online career resource such as our online resume writing service to craft a winning resume first. Consulting a career advice expert to help you navigate the job market can also help.
When you’ve prepared your backup, make an attempt at convincing your boss to let you work remotely. Here are the seven strategies that might help.
1. Explain Your Motivation
First and foremost, be honest with yourself. Reflect on your motivation and decide why you want to continue working from home. Make a list of the pros and cons of remote work and rank them in order of importance.
Here’s what it might look like:
- No commute
- Flexible hours
- Quality time with family
- More distractions
- Lack of social interaction
- Fewer chances of promotion
After that, take your time to weigh in on the subject. If your primary motivation is more quality time for family or hobbies, consider finding a flexible online job instead of bargaining with your boss. With the help of the best job search apps, you can do it easily and quickly, provided you have the key skills required. Having a resume ready is a must, though.
2. Present Evidence
Every point seems more valid when supported with evidence. If your boss is one of those managers who think remote workers are less productive, hard data from recent research might be of great help.
During the last couple of years, several studies have indicated that working from home is more productive. Numbers vary from 4.8% to 47% in favor of remote workers, plus there are a lot of expert opinions in support of working from home.
Yet be careful not to rely exclusively on general findings: Presenting a positive example from your company, if possible, is the best option.
3. Prepare a Plan
Next, you need to devise a plan to present to your manager. Simply asking to “let you work from home” is too vague, experts say.
Are you planning to work remotely all the time, or can you visit the office on certain days? How available can you be for urgent meetings when you are not at the office? These and other questions need to be addressed in advance.
When you come to negotiate with a detailed plan, it’s much easier for your boss to understand what you’re asking for. However, there should always be room for flexibility or a change of plan.
4. Offer a Test Run
If you’ve already worked from home and the experience was positive, all of the above can be convincing enough. But what if you’ve only worked on-site for your current employer?
In the latter case, offering a test run can be the winning strategy. Suggest to work according to your schedule for about three to six months, and they come back to the subject. If your manager sees you have a clear plan, chances are this offer will be accepted.
Needless to add, the final decision after the test period will depend on your performance. Therefore, it’s essential that you prove your plan actually works by delivering impressive quantifiable results.
5. Have a Plan B
Finally, be ready to embrace failure. If things don’t turn out as you expected, accept it and move on. At this point, you can plan another attempt to convince your boss sometime later or immediately initiate a job search.
In most cases, the latter is preferable. Yet you have to be sure that you’re a strong applicant who can impress recruiters and land a job quickly.
These are the metrics that will help you assess your chances:
- Work experience
- Key skills
A competitive, bot-beating resume that can instantly engage a recruiter or a hiring manager is also necessary. If you feel you lack the skills to showcase your credentials to your advantage, get professional help and have your resume written for you.
Today, remote jobs are not a luxury anymore – they are simply an option. Moreover, time has shown that many jobs that can be done from home are done better this way.
Many studies indicate that remote workers are more motivated and productive when not in the office – yet some employers are still not ready to embrace the change. If your boss urges you to get back to the office when you don’t want to, try our strategies and see if they help.
If nothing does, all you can do is start looking for another job. But make sure you are armed and ready with a winning resume before you burn bridges. It would be a shame to leave without a backup, wouldn’t it?