AOC and MMD’s Paul Butler describes and average day in the office and how a lot of discipline is needed when working from home…
Most people wake up, get ready and journey to work, arriving in an office with lots of people, joining the banter and feeling the office buzz. For me, my journey to the office is about ten steps to the right and a short trip down 20 stairs, before turning right and sticking out my finger – one push of the light switch and I am in the office.
I am one of those modern managers who works remotely from home – as do all of my team. We don’t have fixed overheads, but as I have learned from the past three years, working from home requires some exquisite discipline in order to structure the days and get the work done professionally and efficiently. Distractions are all too easy, from the very moment I open my eyes in the morning.
I am an early riser and always wake before my alarm: sometime around 6.30am. My morning ritual is pretty much routine: coffee, breakfast, TV, juice, shower, change and ready for work (unless it is one of my days on the road).
As the PC boots up and loads the numerous overnight emails, my second coffee is already on its way (although I do often dream of Starbucks). After checking and replying to the urgent stuff, I log into Salesforce to check and approve quotations, pricing, opportunities and the like.
This is all done by around 8am, just as our European HQ in Amsterdam is filling up – as I can see from Skype.
Next comes the overnight sales report: checking the status of shipments and invoices to ensure all is in order.
By 9am, Skype is open, meaning many chats and conference calls with colleagues. I call my team at around 9.15am and check up on activities and expectations, before the day continues.
It’s busier towards the end of the month, and my monthly trip to Amsterdam breaks it up, but I try to have at least two days in the ‘office’ each week, with the rest spent out on customer visits with the guys.
I love working from home now that I have the discipline in order. I get to take my coffee or lunch into the garden in summer and don’t hear a sound apart from the birds – and if I am really lucky, I’ll sneak off early for a quick blast on the motorbike in the summer months.