Remote work is becoming more and more attractive to many professionals due to the fact that they feel they would have less distractions and be able to be more focused working from home. A recent FlexJobs study showed that 66% of participants feel that they would be more productive working from home than in the office. However, with many managers still used to the traditional 9-5 office work day, it can be hard to know how to approach them or to get them to approve remote work. Here are a few tips to pitch the idea of working from home to your boss.
Answer the “why do I care” question. To pitch working from home to your boss, view it as a type of job interview. In order to sell them on the idea, make it about them and the bottom line, not you. While you may want to work from home in part for greater work/life balance, of course don’t make that the focus of your conversation.
Instead, determine how working from home would benefit your manager and the organization. This could include researching how much money the department would save if you worked remotely, how much more you could accomplish during the time you would normally commute to work, and a plan for checking in and working with your team.
Research what others are doing. It is also helpful to research how other professionals in your position handle remote work. Do other organizations in your industry have remote work options? What are their policies? Present your boss with your research and pitch the idea as a possible way to stay current with what other companies are doing.
Propose a trial run. Instead of asking your manager to commit without seeing the results first hand, suggest a remote work trial period. Propose a reasonable time frame for the trial period, along with the projects you feel confident you could complete successfully by working from home.
Create a plan for how you would communicate with your manager and how you would handle turning in projects. When your manager sees how much thought you have put in to making remote work a success, they will be more likely to accept the trial.
When working on a plan for your trial, keep in mind that if you have been working full time at an job, it may be difficult to ask to start working from home full time. Instead, ease your manager into the idea by asking for one or two remote days a week.