How to Convince Your Boss To Let You Telecommute
by Pamela Dimmick
Some jobs are ideal for telecommuting and working from home. All you need is a flexible boss and a computer loaded with communications software such as PC Anywhere that allows you dial into the company computer. Let's assume you have the equipment needed or will negotiate that later with the boss. How do you get the green light to work at home?
First, you must already be a valued and trusted team member. You must have already proven that you are a self starter who gets the job done with little supervision. If you have do not have these traits, you probably won't get the opportunity to work at home.
Show him/her the bottom line. Business owners need to be convinced that your telecommuting will benefit the company, not just you. Will you be more productive? Will you be working fewer hours (for less pay) and producing the same output? Will you work the same amount but produce more? Are there costs no longer incurred because you are off site (ie, if the company pays your parking fees, your office space will be freed up). Think of every possible benefit for the company and keep a list. Add to this list as the ideas flow.
Present a written proposal. Here's where your sales skills are going to come into play. Start with your list of benefits and write a proposal the boss can't refuse. Address all possible objections and be prepared to offer solutions. Allow the boss plenty of time to review your proposal and make sure to set an appointment to discuss it once (s)he's read it.
Offer to prove that telecommuting can and will work by trying it out for a few days or hours per week. If you are able to work at home on a trial basis, make sure to set a follow-up appointment to review your progress.
Pamela is in charge of Sales and Marketing for a large auto glass company in California. She works at home part time with her daughter Nicole at her side.
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