Author Topic: Who works from home? Career advice  (Read 9070 times)

haflander

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Who works from home? Career advice
« on: July 25, 2017, 01:05:19 PM »
Hi all! FIRST POST, woo! I discovered MMM a few months ago and haven't stopped reading since. I've made a few changes but still have a long way to go. I'm facing a big career decision that will obviously affect my financial future, so was hoping to get some thoughts...

A little background first. I'm a millennial who graduated a few years ago. I have an English degree (also a double major with History). During college I worked part time editing theses, dissertations, and journal article submissions; usually they were in the science and medical fields. This yielded my first salaried job after school as a medical editor. I worked for a mid-size firm that does research and contract/consulting work for the huge pharmaceutical companies like Genentech, Johnson & Johnson, Bayer, Takeda, etc. That company kinda sucked so I moved on to a very similar job with a huge global corporate outfit doing the same things for the same clients. I'm pretty pleased that I've been able to use an English degree in the health field. Often a degree in humanities is worthless on its own, but if you add experience in a hot field (tech, health, oil + gas) you can demand a pretty respectable salary.

Now on to my dilemma. A few months ago a recruiter contacted me about a work from home position and I agreed to go through the whole interview process even though I like my current job. My thinking here: I always like to find out more information and see what's out there. I like learning about how different companies and professionals do their thing and how my skills are valued in terms of $. Even if I don't like the opportunity, I still like making new contacts and the whole networking thing. I actually did the same thing last year when a company offered me a job for 10 k more, but I turned it down because the commute/cost of living in the middle of Dallas (Uptown) would be stupid expensive.

They offered me the job. It's in the medical education field, but a role change to a project manager type of position. There is some editing involved, so that's why they look for editors, I suppose. I figure that project management experience is huge for my career and resume right now. The money is a little more and obviously the work from home aspect is huge, but I'm more interested in the role and the change in responsibility. I'm leaning towards taking it, but I'd like to hear some thoughts from you, especially those who work from home. Keep in mind this is a regular salary position, just remote; it is NOT freelancing or temporary or independent contractor or any other weird thing.

I've listed all of the factors below and grouped them between financial and career/other stuff. I also talked with someone who has the title I would have, so that's another source of info for the below list. What am I missing, am I forgetting anything important?

$$$
Current: 51,250  |  New: 57,000 after negotiating
Commute: 2.5 bike/drive (weather) | 100% work from home (company pays for travel once a year to Montreal)
Insurance: 200/month (stupid expensive for single young healthy guy) |  0/month premiums
Bonus: 0           |  5% supposedly, though this is hearsay
Raise: 2.5%      |   ? guessing it's similar, idk
The new company pays for your internet! 40/month
TAXES: I guess I can deduct a home office? (10% of rent = $100) maybe a % of utilities also? electricity, water, gas, all that jazz

CAREER
I like my job now! Almost zero commute, reasonable work load, good people, and snacks/drinks, woo! Actually maybe I'd lose weight if I worked at home...
I'm not sure about how I'll be motivated to work from home. I'm good with deadlines, but maybe that changes when you're not wearing pants.
I'm scared of being viewed as a typical dumb millennial job hopper. Started first salary job 1/2015 and current/second 3/2016.
Growth opportunity looks good at both places but maybe better at the new one. Supposedly they've doubled in size in 3 years.

Any thoughts or advice/experience will be greatly appreciated! Thanks

meghan88

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2017, 01:34:45 PM »
Would you be able to mention to your current employer that you've been headhunted, and you're a lock for a job that's paying $6K more plus bonus?  Mention that you're happy where you are but the money and convenience are added temptations that make it difficult to ignore, as well as the exposure to project management.  If your manager is your mentor, you might bring it up by asking for their advice on a personal level.

Companies generally like to retain employees because the cost of recruiting and onboarding for a replacement will likely exceed the $6K.

If your manager is in a position to make a case for you, you might want to try that and you might be pleasantly surprised.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2017, 01:54:59 PM »
Would you be able to mention to your current employer that you've been headhunted, and you're a lock for a job that's paying $6K more plus bonus?  Mention that you're happy where you are but the money and convenience are added temptations that make it difficult to ignore, as well as the exposure to project management.  If your manager is your mentor, you might bring it up by asking for their advice on a personal level.

Companies generally like to retain employees because the cost of recruiting and onboarding for a replacement will likely exceed the $6K.

If your manager is in a position to make a case for you, you might want to try that and you might be pleasantly surprised.

I actually did this last year when I had a chance to take a new job; I thought having a higher offer to leave would get me more $ at the current place. Basically, they said you can leave if you want.

My company was hiring a looot of people when I started, but none this year. They also laid off a few people this spring, which gave everyone a scare. This is another reason I'm open to leaving. I don't think they would replace me if I left. The editorial team is now four, so I think they would just roll along and do the same work with three.

I don't care so much about the money, although it's nice. I'm more interested in the position...and I don't think my current place would just move me into a different role just because I asked. Here, we call our project managers "account executives."

meghan88

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2017, 02:16:40 PM »
Sounds like you're leaning towards the new position but you're wondering if you're better off with the devil you know.  If it's the position that interests you and all other things are equal or comparable, and the $ is better, then go for it.  You just might want to make sure that the new place is financially stable before you jump - but if your current place is in lay-off mode, you might be better off at the new place anyway.

FWIW, the work from home thing should save you even more $.  There's a lot to be said for it, but you do have to be fairly disciplined.

While it's nice to not care that much about the $, your age makes it the best of times to be accumulating and investing.  You'll be making the most of the magic of compounding.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2017, 02:37:13 PM »
Sounds like you're leaning towards the new position but you're wondering if you're better off with the devil you know...
While it's nice to not care that much about the $, your age makes it the best of times to be accumulating and investing.

Yeah, "the devil you know" is one of my considerations.
As for the other part, I was thinking we were the same age based on your user name until I read that line. I guess it doesn't matter, helpful words from youngins and wise old people should be taken equally.

tj

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2017, 02:58:52 PM »
If you are good at interviewing, why not? The worst that can happen is you don't like it and can look for something else. It sounds like you don't have a problem getting through the interview process multiple times now.
 

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2017, 03:07:21 PM »
TJ, I agree. It seems I am pretty good at interviewing, just like I was good at testing back in the day at school. I've been offered several jobs in the past few years and accepted maybe half. Looking at the worst case scenario is a good way to go...even if I hated the new thing, working at home would give me plenty of time to look for a different thing or start my side hustle game.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2017, 03:25:46 PM »
This was a good read and relevant; it's about job hoppers earning a lot more than those who stay at the same place forever...

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/forbes-employees-who-stay-at-company-gt2-years-earn-50-less-over-lifetime/

It seems like 20% raise EACH time would only be possible in STEM or other hot field.

Personally, I started at 35 at Company 1 in 1/2015. Raise to 40 (already in the original offer/contract letter) around 7/2015 and raise to 42 1/2016.
Started at 50 at Company 2 in 3/2016 and raise to 51 4/2017.
Opportunity to start at 57 at Company 3 in 8/2017.
I suck at math, but 35 to 57 is...63% more? I'd be doing great if I spent the same $ as I did with that first job. Sigh, lifestyle creep. I suck.

tj

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2017, 03:51:46 PM »
This was a good read and relevant; it's about job hoppers earning a lot more than those who stay at the same place forever...

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/forbes-employees-who-stay-at-company-gt2-years-earn-50-less-over-lifetime/

It seems like 20% raise EACH time would only be possible in STEM or other hot field.

Personally, I started at 35 at Company 1 in 1/2015. Raise to 40 (already in the original offer/contract letter) around 7/2015 and raise to 42 1/2016.
Started at 50 at Company 2 in 3/2016 and raise to 51 4/2017.
Opportunity to start at 57 at Company 3 in 8/2017.
I suck at math, but 35 to 57 is...63% more? I'd be doing great if I spent the same $ as I did with that first job. Sigh, lifestyle creep. I suck.


It just depends what promotions are available at your company. I can't interview my way out of a paper bag so I'll take what I can get.

lisa_mustache

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2017, 03:56:20 PM »
I "job hopped" every 3 years when I first started working, and now have been happy at my current job for the past 5 years (and plan to stay here until FIRE, assuming they keep me).  Part of my current job satisfaction is being able to work from home, even though the office is only 5 miles away.  I have three young children, and cutting out the commute, plus spending lunch times and coffee breaks with them is priceless to me.  I have been advancing here, and I find I get a lot of stuff done without pants! ;)  Plus it's nice to spend time at the place where we sink mortgage payments, and I don't have to pack a lunch or coffee because it's just all downstairs.  I wasn't sure I could cut it working from home, but now I never want to go back.

From what you've shared here, I say go for the new job.  The perks are all good, and you clearly have found a niche where you're employable elsewhere already, even without the additional PM experience.  I think it looks good on your resume to continue to acquire skills early on, even if you haven't had any long-tenured positions yet.  And if this new job is a good fit, the early jobs being short won't count against you because you can stay at the new place for a little longer. 

Good luck with your decision!  Sounds like you basically win either way, but I like the shade of green of the newer grass a little better. :)

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2017, 04:12:18 PM »
Thanks Lisa, it's good to hear your experience. My current thoughts over the past few years have been "if this place looks better and gives me more money, then do it." But eventually, there's no more money to be had. At some point, no one will want to pay you more than what you already make. Plus, factor in working from home. If you value that at around 20 a year, then you're not likely to get a 20 k jump anywhere. And you wouldn't even want the bump because of the added commute. That being said, I could definitely see myself settling down for several years, as you've done. I actually felt the same way about my current place before this opportunity came up, though.

Broadway2019

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2017, 04:59:01 PM »
I also am a millenial who has been working at home for 2-3 years now. It is really great, however, you really need to be a self-starter and motivated each day. When you go into an office, you don't have all the distractions of TV, personal phone calls, running errands, etc.. On the flip side, it can be very lonely. I sometimes do not leave my house for days. I joined crossfit so I have somewhere to go and chat with people everyday along with getting fit. Prior I was always begging my spouse to go to happy hour or out just to leave the house.

apricity22

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2017, 06:36:07 PM »
Hi Haflander,

I work from home too. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? I think this is an important question as I know the hardest thing for a lot of people is not being around other people all day. They find they miss the office gossip, water cooler talk etc. etc. For me as an introvert, not having those things was great! For me it was exhausting never knowing when somebody was gonna drop by my office because they needed something or they just wanted to chat. Working from home, I can concentrate without unexpected interruptions. When I do have to travel to the home offie or to see a client I am usually more engaged because I'm not burned out on being around people all of the time.

I will say that it can be lonely but it makes me much more eager to see my significant other when she gets home at night and I find I am much more likely to accept social invitations from friends both of which I see as positives. For me, working from home works because I don't miss the office social scene and my motivation to work isn't any different from the office setting. I don't really think that it is for everyone and if everything else is great at your current job I don't think working at home is a single big enough factor that I would give up a job for that perk alone especially since you said you have a very short commute. The grass isn't always greener on the other side and if you are truly happy at your job, I would probably not try to fix something that isn't broken.

Zero Degrees

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2017, 07:42:27 PM »
I have a couple of decades on you - but I have worked from home in the past and loved it. I would do it again. I am self-motivated and not easily distracted. I could swap laundry or start dinner and not get off track.  I actually found I worked more when I was at home.

I caution the same things others have said. I did miss the interaction at times (extrovert here), so the best times where when I did a combo of home and office. 

To anyone who might consider the tactic of telling your supervisor you have been headhunted or that you are leaving and where  you are going - a word of caution - I told an employer that I was leaving after being headhunted and they got my offer rescinded AFTER I had given notice.  So I had to go graveling back to keep my job I had just quit.  I left again a few months later without any word of where I was headed.   
« Last Edit: July 25, 2017, 07:45:19 PM by Zero Degrees »

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2017, 08:41:06 AM »
Kwarden and apricity, thanks. I'm definitely an introvert and generally speaking don't like people. But I actually viewed this as a point in favor of staying in the office to get me out of my shell and force me to talk to people. You're right, I'm already thinking of different ways to be social OTHER than working. I'm thinking volunteering, poker nights. I didn't consider accepting more social invitations as a result of working from home but I bet I would do that too. I did a running club in the past so maybe I'd pick that up again; maybe even look into crossfit?

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2017, 08:44:27 AM »
I have for four years, and it's fantastic.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #16 on: July 26, 2017, 08:49:38 AM »
I joined crossfit so I have somewhere to go and chat with people everyday along with getting fit.

How much does the membership cost? Are there different options, like paying just to get in and use the stuff vs being in an actual class with other humans? I'd like some insight on the $ aspects of this...I live in suburbia; there are three different crossfit gyms within five miles.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2017, 08:53:33 AM »
To anyone who might consider the tactic of telling your supervisor you have been headhunted or that you are leaving and where  you are going - a word of caution - I told an employer that I was leaving after being headhunted and they got my offer rescinded AFTER I had given notice.  So I had to go graveling back to keep my job I had just quit.  I left again a few months later without any word of where I was headed.

This sounds like a nightmare. I don't understand what happened though. Your employer somehow got your new offer voided? How, by claiming you did something illegal or against some kind of non-compete clause/agreement? This sounds bizarre so I must learn more!

Broadway2019

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2017, 09:02:55 AM »
I joined crossfit so I have somewhere to go and chat with people everyday along with getting fit.

How much does the membership cost? Are there different options, like paying just to get in and use the stuff vs being in an actual class with other humans? I'd like some insight on the $ aspects of this...I live in suburbia; there are three different crossfit gyms within five miles.

It is very un-mustachian. I pay $135 for 3 times a week or $155 for unlimited. It is more than just going to work out, especially because I work at home. This is my outing and is far healthier than going to happy hours or shopping. I consider it a win. Could I do the workout at home? To some degree but I would not push myself as hard and it would not be as enjoyable. I use this as my sociallizing event every day.

Also, crossfit is not just a class. It is with trainers who help you get better form and walk you through the exercises. I have tried groupon crossfit places and I would never do it again. The trainers are lacking at many. You really need to find a crossfit place that has good trainers so you do not injure yourself. In crossfit, I find you pay for what you get. You want to pay less, than you end up in a mediocre crossfit gym. I have done crossfit in Florida, Connecticut, and Maryland.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2017, 09:06:22 AM by kwarden13 »

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2017, 09:14:55 AM »
I joined crossfit so I have somewhere to go and chat with people everyday along with getting fit.

How much does the membership cost? Are there different options, like paying just to get in and use the stuff vs being in an actual class with other humans? I'd like some insight on the $ aspects of this...I live in suburbia; there are three different crossfit gyms within five miles.

It is very un-mustachian. I pay $135 for 3 times a week or $155 for unlimited. It is more than just going to work out, especially because I work at home. This is my outing and is far healthier than going to happy hours or shopping. I consider it a win. Could I do the workout at home? To some degree but I would not push myself as hard and it would not be as enjoyable. I use this as my sociallizing event every day.

Wow, that's a lot. I guess if you break it down into the cost per day it feels better. I have a good friend who does it so I'm familiar with how it works and all of the benefits. Maybe I'll ask him. But when comparing...a lot of running clubs are free unless you count breakfast afterwards on Saturdays and/or happy hour at night. And then just paying for a 5k or half marathon every once in a while to give yourself a nice goal and date and measure your progress. I also play soccer on the weekends to the tune of about...400 a year, not including expensive shoes and other gear every other year. This is my socializing/fitness expense.

digitalfusion

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2017, 09:48:21 AM »
I would take it.
Also, I would not be afraid of being considered a "Job Hopper".  The reason is you are moving up and taking on more responsibilities.  To me that shows a capability and resourcefulness.  No red flags there... a red flag would be job hopping and remaining in the same type of positions, which means you are not dependable.

bigalsmith101

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2017, 10:02:33 AM »
I've been working from home for the past 6 months. It can be a struggle for me to find motivation, and the onus is 100% on me to get my job done and take on more work. I'm an outside sales rep, 100% remote/work from home. I've landed a single BIG client in these first few months, and now I have to bust my ass to find more business. I love the job, but I am magnitudes more efficient when I have a task assigned to me with a deadline. Currently that only happens as I get closer to a current project due-date. Until that time, I'm just working on getting clients, with no deadlines, etc.

So, long story short, if you can stay focused, keep your productivity levels up, I'd tell you to go for it! Plus, it's another 11.7% raise. That's $500/mo pre-tax, straight into your 401k or IRA or investment account.

Frugal Lizard

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2017, 10:09:00 AM »
I really like working from home.  There are a lot of benefits. I like that I can do laundry, eat my food, have repair people, kids etc around.  I now find it really hard to work in an office with the phone ringing and other people around.  I think I work less time overall because all my interruptions are mostly planned by me or clients.  My work space is in the basement so once an hour I get up to warm up - with a trip to the kitchen or out into the back yard.  I find my expenses are less because I don't have to wear a different outfit every day.  I am eating healthy at home, no transportation expenses, better meal planning (pull something out of the freezer at lunch or prep at lunch for the slow cooker) just by being at home.  And this introvert craves the quiet.

A mentor once told me - don't negotiate a raise with another offer.  He felt very strongly that if an employee did that - they were gone the next time he could get rid of them.  Maybe my mentor was an asshole but his firm position has stuck with me. I have always compared the offer with the job I had at the moment.  I have had employers try to keep me with offers of raises or matching when I gave notice. But the way mentor said to look at it - if you were willing to pay me that now why have you been ripping me off all this time? 

I would say the opportunity to expand skill set is always worth pursuing.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2017, 10:10:36 AM by Frugal Lizard »

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2017, 10:56:54 AM »
Also, I would not be afraid of being considered a "Job Hopper".  The reason is you are moving up and taking on more responsibilities.  To me that shows a capability and resourcefulness.  No red flags there... a red flag would be job hopping and remaining in the same type of positions, which means you are not dependable.

Good point. Moving for more responsibility is a big difference.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2017, 11:00:42 AM »
I love the job, but I am magnitudes more efficient when I have a task assigned to me with a deadline.

Plus, it's another 11.7% raise. That's $500/mo pre-tax, straight into your 401k or IRA or investment account.

1. The new job is very task- and deadlines-based, so that will help keep me on point. I don't think I could do a job like sales where everything is up to you.
2. Well...I just discovered MMM and haven't really made any changes yet. I think the start date for the new job would be a good date to start implementing many of the things I'm learning here. I want to have a date to point to and say, I started here. That way it will be easier to measure changes. Maybe I'll start a journal on this forum, that would be fun...

Dave1442397

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2017, 11:03:23 AM »
I love working from home. Officially, I'm supposed to go to the office two days a week, but I haven't been there in over a month now.

I save $15 in gas and tolls by staying home, plus close to two hours in the car. It's a 60 mile round trip commute. If i leave the house at 5:15am I can get to work before 6am, but even leaving work at 2pm it can take over an hour to get home.

I get way more done at home. I get into a project some days and work from 6am until lunchtime without even noticing the time go by. I can also do laundry, get a haircut etc during the day if I need to.

Most of the people I work with are in remote locations, so even if I were in the office, I wouldn't see them.

Telecaster

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2017, 12:31:44 PM »
Would you be able to mention to your current employer that you've been headhunted, and you're a lock for a job that's paying $6K more plus bonus?  Mention that you're happy where you are but the money and convenience are added temptations that make it difficult to ignore, as well as the exposure to project management.  If your manager is your mentor, you might bring it up by asking for their advice on a personal level.

Companies generally like to retain employees because the cost of recruiting and onboarding for a replacement will likely exceed the $6K.

If your manager is in a position to make a case for you, you might want to try that and you might be pleasantly surprised.

You might be unpleasantly surprised too. 

Many companies do not make counter offers as a matter of policy.  The simple reason is that statistically most employees who accept counter offers will soon resume their their job search and leave anyway.   In other words, counters are ineffective as a retention tool so lots of companies don't bother.  And depending on the company and state labor laws, searching for a new job can be grounds for termination.   If you aren't a loyal member of the team with the best interests of the company in mind, they don't want you working there.   The day you discuss your job offer with boss might be your last day at work.

A much better approach is simply try to negotiate a higher salary based on your work performance, and don't mention the job offer.     

Re:  Working from home.  I do it, and I love.  Even if you have a short commute, it is still unproductive work-related time that you don't get paid for.   Having that time back is huge, at least for me. 

Some people have concerns about being productive at home.  Sure, there are distractions, but compare with a typical office.  At home you can easily have unblocks of uninterrupted time to work.   That almost never happens in an office environment. 

Zero Degrees

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2017, 04:33:58 PM »
To anyone who might consider the tactic of telling your supervisor you have been headhunted or that you are leaving and where  you are going - a word of caution - I told an employer that I was leaving after being headhunted and they got my offer rescinded AFTER I had given notice.  So I had to go graveling back to keep my job I had just quit.  I left again a few months later without any word of where I was headed.

This sounds like a nightmare. I don't understand what happened though. Your employer somehow got your new offer voided? How, by claiming you did something illegal or against some kind of non-compete clause/agreement? This sounds bizarre so I must learn more!


They contacted my new employer and claimed they committed a breach of contract on a non-compete clause. 

The options given were:

1) pay X amount $$$ to buy me out.

2) Continue to hire me and immediately be taken to court.

3) Rescind the offer.

I don't blame the new company for choosing #3.  They owed me nothing and didn't know me yet.  That is what you get after you give a company double digit years.

Goldielocks

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #28 on: July 27, 2017, 07:19:38 AM »
I haven't read the other responses, sorry if this has been said.

If you really love the medical editing, I would not quit and change to the new position.  PM is a LOT different, and once you start, it traps your mind and makes it hard to do editing and creative work in the same day or shift.   It does not seem like PM is a natural skill expansion for someone that wants to be a tier one editor / writer / communications specialist.   Your skill set is actually highly valuable, and I would hire you in a minute, but NOT for combining this role with PM work, in my opinion.  Of course, if you don't like your work now, and want to be a PM or planner instead, my answer would be different.

Other, better opportunities with editing and medical field will come along.  Dallas is booming.  Focus on becoming GREAT at what you love, especially as it is already paying a decent wage.

I say this as a current PM instructor, and former PM person who tried hard to get out of PM roles whenever I could.  For what it is worth, I think a bit of job hopping early in a career is OK, but you need to eventually stay somewhere for 5 years... and if  you have kids planned soon, better sooner than later, because job hopping track record + time off for babies = hard to explain how great you are.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2017, 07:25:02 AM by Goldielocks »

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #29 on: July 27, 2017, 07:54:12 AM »
If you really love the medical editing, I would not quit and change to the new position.  PM is a LOT different, and once you start, it traps your mind and makes it hard to do editing and creative work in the same day or shift.   It does not seem like PM is a natural skill expansion for someone that wants to be a tier one editor / writer / communications specialist.   Your skill set is actually highly valuable, and I would hire you in a minute, but NOT for combining this role with PM work, in my opinion.  Of course, if you don't like your work now, and want to be a PM or planner instead, my answer would be different.

Other, better opportunities with editing and medical field will come along.  Dallas is booming.  Focus on becoming GREAT at what you love, especially as it is already paying a decent wage.

I say this as a current PM instructor, and former PM person who tried hard to get out of PM roles whenever I could.  For what it is worth, I think a bit of job hopping early in a career is OK, but you need to eventually stay somewhere for 5 years... and if  you have kids planned soon, better sooner than later, because job hopping track record + time off for babies = hard to explain how great you are.

Thanks for the thoughts! But I feel like I should clarify or reiterate some things. The new job is STILL smack in the middle of the medical field and there is still some editing involved. I won't be leaving the Dallas area, but I would be free to move around within the greater metroplex/suburb area. Also, I've never felt like my job or any previous one was creative. Maybe compared to a traditional job like a teacher or accountant, sure. I DON'T create content and I'm not a medical writer (no MD or PhD), nor do I have the desire to go that route. The title of the new role is Content Manager, so not strictly PM work, but PM is the closest thing I could think of that most people would be able to recognize. I figure that my long-term choices (after seeing whether I like the new thing) are: staying at the job; going back to a more med editing role; or testing the market to find my value as a PM in the same or another field. However, I'm not sure whether I could jump to a completely different industry for a PM position just on the basis of PM experience, without industry experience.

You seem to know about the med comms field...is this right? I'm in med comms now and the new thing is a slight transition to med ed.

dreams_and_discoveries

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #30 on: July 27, 2017, 08:51:43 AM »
Take it, the job-hopper label is fast being cosigned to history.

My parents both only worked for the government, and consider me a job-hopper...... however I see this a a good thing, able to adapt to different environment, and meeting a much wider range of people that you would in one organisation.

Goldielocks

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #31 on: July 28, 2017, 12:35:11 PM »
If you really love the medical editing, I would not quit and change to the new position.  PM is a LOT different, and once you start, it traps your mind and makes it hard to do editing and creative work in the same day or shift.   It does not seem like PM is a natural skill expansion for someone that wants to be a tier one editor / writer / communications specialist.   Your skill set is actually highly valuable, and I would hire you in a minute, but NOT for combining this role with PM work, in my opinion.  Of course, if you don't like your work now, and want to be a PM or planner instead, my answer would be different.

Other, better opportunities with editing and medical field will come along.  Dallas is booming.  Focus on becoming GREAT at what you love, especially as it is already paying a decent wage.

I say this as a current PM instructor, and former PM person who tried hard to get out of PM roles whenever I could.  For what it is worth, I think a bit of job hopping early in a career is OK, but you need to eventually stay somewhere for 5 years... and if  you have kids planned soon, better sooner than later, because job hopping track record + time off for babies = hard to explain how great you are.

Thanks for the thoughts! But I feel like I should clarify or reiterate some things. The new job is STILL smack in the middle of the medical field and there is still some editing involved. I won't be leaving the Dallas area, but I would be free to move around within the greater metroplex/suburb area. Also, I've never felt like my job or any previous one was creative. Maybe compared to a traditional job like a teacher or accountant, sure. I DON'T create content and I'm not a medical writer (no MD or PhD), nor do I have the desire to go that route. The title of the new role is Content Manager, so not strictly PM work, but PM is the closest thing I could think of that most people would be able to recognize. I figure that my long-term choices (after seeing whether I like the new thing) are: staying at the job; going back to a more med editing role; or testing the market to find my value as a PM in the same or another field. However, I'm not sure whether I could jump to a completely different industry for a PM position just on the basis of PM experience, without industry experience.

You seem to know about the med comms field...is this right? I'm in med comms now and the new thing is a slight transition to med ed.

I am not strong in the medical aspect, but technical writing and technical communications pays a lot more than technical education.   Often because clear information is needed to sell or pursade and audience to an idea or concept.  Your niche is actually hard to find great people for.  I assume you are editing something that a smart person, who is a non-professional writer created.   I think you need a lot of creativity for that, plus just "getting things done" nature.  That nature helps with management and organization, but those skills are actually easier to come by, so keep building up the technical / creative / writing skills, IMO, and keep the managmeent and pm to less than 25% of your efforts.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #32 on: July 28, 2017, 02:35:10 PM »
I am not strong in the medical aspect, but technical writing and technical communications pays a lot more than technical education.   Often because clear information is needed to sell or pursade and audience to an idea or concept.  Your niche is actually hard to find great people for.  I assume you are editing something that a smart person, who is a non-professional writer created.   I think you need a lot of creativity for that, plus just "getting things done" nature.  That nature helps with management and organization, but those skills are actually easier to come by, so keep building up the technical / creative / writing skills, IMO, and keep the managmeent and pm to less than 25% of your efforts.

Ah, ok. You're right! I work on things that smart non-writers created. That's a good way to describe an editor, I suppose. I actually looked for technical writing jobs when I was interviewing after graduation despite zero background in anything tech-related (only English degree and editing experience). I didn't get any offers in my area, understandably. I basically had an offer that would have required me to uproot everything and move to Houston away from all family and friends. It was for a car dealership software tech giant. I got the medical editor offer just in time to turn down the other one, otherwise I was strongly considering it.

I'm happy with the way things went. I think I enjoy my work more that I would tech writing, which obviously pays more.

Goldielocks

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #33 on: July 28, 2017, 02:46:43 PM »
 A good side branch to look into is proposal writing.  This could be for medical field, or pharmaceuticals, or engineering, or other projects.

No, not the type to get grant funding (no money really, or it is a grind, one after another), I mean with a large company trying to sell products and services.  You do need an industry background (like your medical industry), and proving communications / writing skills, and you are all set.  I found it very creative outlet to try to design a message around technical concepts, for people to read who are not "quite" in the industry.  Like a Ted Talk?.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #34 on: July 28, 2017, 02:57:31 PM »
A good side branch to look into is proposal writing.  This could be for medical field, or pharmaceuticals, or engineering, or other projects.

No, not the type to get grant funding (no money really, or it is a grind, one after another), I mean with a large company trying to sell products and services.  You do need an industry background (like your medical industry), and proving communications / writing skills, and you are all set.  I found it very creative outlet to try to design a message around technical concepts, for people to read who are not "quite" in the industry.  Like a Ted Talk?.

I've seen jobs for this before, including a lot of part-time work and freelance/gig work. If I were to get into that, it would be as a side hustle. Is this something you've done before? What would be your advice on how to break in and how/where to look for this work as a rookie?

Goldielocks

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #35 on: July 29, 2017, 12:43:10 AM »
A good side branch to look into is proposal writing.  This could be for medical field, or pharmaceuticals, or engineering, or other projects.

No, not the type to get grant funding (no money really, or it is a grind, one after another), I mean with a large company trying to sell products and services.  You do need an industry background (like your medical industry), and proving communications / writing skills, and you are all set.  I found it very creative outlet to try to design a message around technical concepts, for people to read who are not "quite" in the industry.  Like a Ted Talk?.

I've seen jobs for this before, including a lot of part-time work and freelance/gig work. If I were to get into that, it would be as a side hustle. Is this something you've done before? What would be your advice on how to break in and how/where to look for this work as a rookie?

Ideally, you have some experience with technical writing, or even admin, in an industry you want to write in.  (Freelance may work to get you there).  Apply with the marketing folks, as well as looking at the admin jobs, in companies that sell services.  Pharma will post these properly as a proposal writer or marketing.   Often posted as an admin, but states all over it about writing proposals.  Because, you know, the person hiring is a crappy communicator and needs help being clear and admin isn't really what they want, but their vocab is limited.

The other way is to call up HR of the target companies as ask them how they post and hire for jobs that require a lot of technical writing or proposal writing support.

deborah

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #36 on: July 29, 2017, 02:55:32 AM »
I am retired, but while I was working, I did several stints of working from home. I also did stints as a PM. I really loved working from home, but it was always at jobs that I had done before. I'm not sure how I would have gone working from home in a job that was new to me. I also am not sure how I could possibly have been working from home while in a management style role - especially if management was new to me.

Unique User

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #37 on: July 31, 2017, 07:16:12 AM »
I work from home and love it.  I'm an introvert and dislike going into an office.  Right now, I'm both a PM and a people manager, but can say that the PM part for me is easy from home, but the people management part is hard. 

Tetsuya Hondo

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #38 on: July 31, 2017, 07:37:31 AM »
I've been working from home for over eight years now.

The good:
- It saves you money. No more work clothes, commuting expenses, gas, parking, lunches or coffees out, etc. You can deduct the hell out of your office expenses, although having an accountant helps to make you more audit-proof.
- No wasted commuting time.
- No one looking over your shoulder at work.
- Freedom from work distractions - people popping in to talk about nonsense when you're trying to get something done.

The bad:
- You have to work harder to stay in the know at work. People assume you know things that they picked up from the workplace ether. Unless your video-conferencing a lot, you'll miss all the non-verbals.
- Managing people and coordinating things that involve lots of moving pieces can be difficult. Not impossible, but it requires more communication. This is the biggest thing that I've struggled with, but only on some projects.
- People can envious or you'll get some snark if it's not the norm at your workplace.
- Unless you're a hermit, you'll need to build in ways to get human interactions during the week.

For me the positives far outweigh the negatives. I could never go back to the office now.

apricity22

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #39 on: July 31, 2017, 10:03:40 AM »
The good:
- It saves you money. No more work clothes, commuting expenses, gas, parking, lunches or coffees out, etc. You can deduct the hell out of your office expenses, although having an accountant helps to make you more audit-proof.
- No wasted commuting time.
- No one looking over your shoulder at work.
- Freedom from work distractions - people popping in to talk about nonsense when you're trying to get something done.

Totally agree with this list. Another one that has happened for me is that I haven't got sick since I started working from home. May just be a coincidence but I'm starting to be convinced that it's because I'm not exposed to as many germs anymore.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #40 on: July 31, 2017, 10:32:03 AM »
Good points TH and apricity. I definitely agree with your lists. And not getting sick, I wouldn't have thought of that. Something else I'll add: no more taking pto for dumb things like appointments or maintenance working on my apt (I need to be there because of the dog). The guy from the new company told me that if things are slow, you can do errands during the work day, no problem! Grocery shopping, dentist, doctor, oil change, whatever.

As for the bad list, those are good to consider. I didn't mention this in the original post, but everyone at the new company works from home. It's set up that way so I'd be walking into a system already in place. There's a lot of communication and IM and video conferencing, supposedly. So everyone is on the same playing field and there's no jealousy, office politics, or water cooler talk. The human interaction is what I'm most concerned about. I've come up with many different things I want to start doing during the week for human contact...running group, volunteering, hang out with friends more at night (because you actually want and you're not tired after commuting).

This is in addition to working at different locations other than the apt to mix things up! The library is one mile away and Starbucks is 2.5, and I'm thinking I could bike/drive to friends/family to be with them during the work day, especially if my work is slow. A few have flexible jobs (teachers with many holidays) and own their own small businesses, so would always welcome me to come over to hang out.

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #41 on: July 31, 2017, 02:20:42 PM »
The only real advantage of the old job appears to be "networking?"

So I guess I'd ask what your age is.  If you are under 30 and still relatively early in your career, "networking" may be important.

If you are 59 and winding down, it probably has little value.

I've been working from home for several years now (after a 4 year "early retirement).  I vastly prefer working from home to fighting traffic and trudging into work and pretending to be bright eyed and bushy tailed at my desk for 8-10 hours a day. 

But some people don't like it.  If you are a social butterfly- one of those folks who spends the whole work day chit chatting and, at the end of the day, accomplishes little or nothing, working from home would probably seem awful.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #42 on: August 02, 2017, 08:29:03 AM »
A couple things that no one has mentioned...

Does anyone find that their utilities skyrocket after they start working from home? Electricity, water, gas. If mine increased it wouldn't really influence my decision, but it would be nice to know ahead of time what to expect. My combined cost for all of these in normally low, under $80, as I'm the only person living in a one bedroom apt.

Can any of the above be deducted at tax time? I know the % of square foot for office deduction, but what about the utilities you use during working hours? If you calculate that half of your time in the house/apt is spent working, can you deduct 50% of the utilities stuff?

Goldielocks

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #43 on: August 02, 2017, 12:17:16 PM »
A couple things that no one has mentioned...

Does anyone find that their utilities skyrocket after they start working from home? Electricity, water, gas. If mine increased it wouldn't really influence my decision, but it would be nice to know ahead of time what to expect. My combined cost for all of these in normally low, under $80, as I'm the only person living in a one bedroom apt.

Can any of the above be deducted at tax time? I know the % of square foot for office deduction, but what about the utilities you use during working hours? If you calculate that half of your time in the house/apt is spent working, can you deduct 50% of the utilities stuff?

Yes, I noticed this,  for utilities, as I can't let the temp drop to 15 celcius and still work productively...  It was offset with a lower cost wardrobe / hair / shoes, and transportation.  I also pay a lot more for coffee now that I have to buy Folgers (lol).  At least $20 per month.

I am able to write off work from home expenses on taxes, in the ratio that my dedicated office is to my overall home size, or that is used entirely for work (internet added connection?).  (% by room count or sq.ft)  The key here is to get a T2200 form from your employer stating that they do not provide you with an office, and that work from home is a requirement.      (Canada form).   The US likely has some similar policy (with or without a form from the employer)

apricity22

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #44 on: August 02, 2017, 06:42:36 PM »
A couple things that no one has mentioned...

Does anyone find that their utilities skyrocket after they start working from home? Electricity, water, gas. If mine increased it wouldn't really influence my decision, but it would be nice to know ahead of time what to expect. My combined cost for all of these in normally low, under $80, as I'm the only person living in a one bedroom apt.

Can any of the above be deducted at tax time? I know the % of square foot for office deduction, but what about the utilities you use during working hours? If you calculate that half of your time in the house/apt is spent working, can you deduct 50% of the utilities stuff?

I have a ceiling fan in my home office which I use during the summer and I purchased a space heater which I use during the winter. The rest of the house stays at the energy conserving temperatures that we used before I started working from home therefore the impact to my utility bills have been negligible. I suppose I use slightly more water but not enough to make a noticeable difference in the bill.

I believe utilities are deductible but I think the amount that is deductible is the square footage percentage not the percentage of time working there. There are also some requirements that you should look into such as working from home must be for the convenience of your employer not for your convenience and the home office space can't double as a guest room or for some other personal use.

JLee

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #45 on: August 02, 2017, 07:13:29 PM »
I'm not sure how job-hopping gained a negative connotation, unless it's a term spread by corporations who don't want to treat their employees well enough to keep them.

Voluntarily leaving a job for something better is not the same as getting fired every few months, i.e. being unable to keep a job. Companies will lay you off in a heartbeat to serve the needs of the company.  Why should one put their needs above yours?

ohmylookatthat

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #46 on: August 02, 2017, 09:37:20 PM »
take the new job and keep the old one. work them simultaneously if you can handle it.

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #47 on: August 03, 2017, 06:14:53 AM »
I do use more power and heat.  But my savings of not needing before and after school care for my kids will always outweigh the spending on utilities.
My office is in the walkout basement so I don't need air conditioning.  But I need light and the winter I am always cold so I have these huge thick wool socks that I wear. I also turn on the gas fireplace behind me so that the rest of the house can be much colder.  For lunch in the summer, I eat on the front porch to warm up and say hello to the mail man.

One of my cons is that I often have trouble shutting down work.  For example, last night I ended up doing forty minutes of editing and email replies because I checked my email to make sure that work I did Tuesday was received.  Then I was back in 'work' mode for the evening. 

deborah

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #48 on: August 04, 2017, 06:11:15 AM »
That was a huge problem that I had. It really is difficult to have a habit of turning off from work and into "home" mode.

haflander

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Re: Who works from home? Career advice
« Reply #49 on: August 04, 2017, 07:39:46 AM »
That was a huge problem that I had. It really is difficult to have a habit of turning off from work and into "home" mode.

I've wondered about this. I talked to a guy who does the same job at the new place. He said they generally operate on a regular schedule, but there are some weirdos who work at night instead. I guess the goal here would just be to have a set amount of hours that you work (ideally eight + lunch or other breaks) and then you STOP working after you've hit your time? Probably depends on the company/job, so I'll just have to wait and see. Maybe check your email once at night to limit the amount of unpleasant surprises you get in the morning. Right now I walk the dog right when I come home and that helps me transition, so I'd probably keep doing that to help the shift in the brain from working to resting.