Alternative worlds: Homeworkers snigger all day at herd in the office


home-worker-1469968The Daily Mash ‘reports’ that “homeworkers spend up to 85% of their working day laughing spitefully at anyone stupid enough to be in an office.”

These happy homeworkers start off “chuckling to themselves as they send a couple of 7am emails so it looks like they’ve started early.” And they continue in this fun-filled vein all  day long, enjoying a filter coffee and cooking gourmet lunches while the rest of the office-incarcerated herd chugs “machine-made shit” and eats “reheated cheese toasties in a filthy canteen”.

Okay, so The Daily Mash isn’t exactly a credible source – except for satire.

But this piece addresses an important, salient point. Isn’t the homeworker always better off than the office-bound? Sans the commute, the office attire and the irritation of being around other people.

Yes and no. Having worked as a foreign correspondent from my London home for seven years, then moving into an office and back home again, the only idea worth chortling at is that it’s easy to work from home.

Yes it is but only if you work (rather than slack) from home.

It calls for an astounding degree of self-control; an amazing level of discipline and commitment to one’s work. It requires enormous concentration – when the dogs are barking, the doorbell is ringing but the deadline is upon us.

In actual fact, it’s harder to work from home than in an office. You are your own supervisor and well aware of exactly how much or little you accomplished in that last hour (15 minutes writing the lede para, 20 minutes on Facebook, 10 minutes on email and 15 to check multiple web recipes on good ways to use up leftover meatloaf).

This is a sobering reality for the world’s estimated 300 million homeworkers. Not much chortling there, I imagine, though there might be the odd cup of filter coffee.