I’m lucky enough to work remotely every day of the year. Most of the time, that means I’m working from a desk in my living room. Sometimes, it means I’m joining in on a conference call from my car in between running errands. On warm and sunny days, it may mean I’m working from a table outside a local cafe.
My boss knows that it doesn’t matter where I am as long as I’m getting my work done. And that’s a big relief for me, because I live in an isolated small town. Unless I were to change careers, finding a job locally would be impossible, and commuting to the nearest major city (2 hours each way) to an office would be soul-destroying, not to mention expensive and environmentally destructive.
But it took me years to find a position where I was valued for my work product rather than for my ability to sit in a cube. To help spread the word about the fact that teleworking is not only a viable option but also comes with heaps of benefit to employers, employees, and the environment, Mobile Work Exchange, a supporter of 1 Million for Work Flexibility, has launched their fourth-annual “Telework Week”, a global effort to encourage agencies, organizations, and individuals to pledge to telework for the entire week of March 3-7, 2014.
Telecommuting for even just a single week can have a major impact. Last year, more than 136,000 pledged their participation in Telework Week. That saved a whopping $12.3 million in commuting costs and kept cars from driving 12.1 million miles. It also removed 7,892 tons of pollutants from the air. And participants gained back 665,936 hours in their lives (that’s 76 years!) to do more than just watch the road go by.
I’ll definitely be taking part in Telework Week 2014. Even if you’ve never worked from home before, now is the time to try it and join me! To pledge your participation (or even better, your entire organization’s participation), and to see what benefits that will have, please visit www.mobileworkexchange.com/teleworkweek. And then to help make work flexibility of all kinds a reality for more people, add your name to the 1 Million for Work Flexibility!