?It was a beautiful sunny Thursday morning last week that made me want ditch work
and go to the beach. And even though I'm allowed to do it once in a while (God bless
people who came up with flexible work arrangements!), I still had a tiny feeling of
guilt deep inside because I thought I was going to lose the day and not get much work
done. Not surprisingly, being a workaholic that I am, I ended up working from the
beach, and the entire day turned out to be a quite productive, yet very enjoyable
endeavor, complemented by a beautiful suntan by the end of the business hours.
The big surprise was to realize how easy it is to get things done from virtually
anywhere, including Coney Island beach, with the tools we have these days. So here's
my list of what you can do to trade a corner office for a home office, spa office, any
other kind of office you can think of.
Switch to email communication.
Your desk phone number is the first thing that stands between you and the free world
beyond the office walls. Avoiding the office seems impossible when you know people
will be calling you all day long. On the other hand if you use email you will know that
your clients can reach you anytime anywhere, and won't have you chained to that
uncomfortable chair in the office. Plus, you know you won't be interrupted during the
most precious moments, like when you are feeding your favorite gold fish or getting a
hot stone massage.
Get a wireless handset made for business.
Blackberry has by far the best email on-the-go solution, it makes it easy to switch
between email accounts, and with the push technology you get emails seamlessly
delivered to your fingertips. Many people choose iPhone, but I personally wouldn't
recommend it - touch screen may seem cool, but it makes typing unnecessarily
complicated. And, hey, the last thing you want to do on the beach is deal with
Voice it with Google voice.
It kills me when I see that so many people still don't know about Google Voice. Its
concept is brilliant - you get a phone number that can be redirected to any landline or
cell phone in the country, like your office number, or home phone, or your cell. So if
you accidentally forget to go to work one day, your clients can be calling you on the
phone within the arm's reach from the couch in your living room. And here's the best
part about it - they will have no idea that instead of sweating at work you are hanging
out with the mummies at the Metropolitan museum.
Let candidates look for you, not the other way around.
One fact that has been noted about the consequences of the recession is that it killed
many of the minor job websites, but brought new ones that learned to deliver great
value at an extremely low price. You don't have to work hard manually searching for
candidates when you've spent your entire budget on a job listing on Career Builder
and can't afford to place another ad anywhere else. Take DandyProject.com as an
example. It can give you the same quality of the applicants as any major job search
engine, but only for a fraction of the premium price. It's a win-win, you minimize
recruitment costs and maximize time spent tasting wine at the nearby winery.
Meet people around you.
You will meet people anywhere you decide to go instead of going to work (well,
unless you are heading to the Moon or that Hot Tub Time Machine movie), so make
sure you make the most out of it. We all know how it works - the most perfect
candidate always pops up from the most unexpected source. Just make sure they don't
tell your boss they've met you at the annual swingers' convention.
No matter how much you like your work, there will always be times when you'd want
to escape and do something unconventional during business hours. Luckily, modern
day technology and people's mindset can easily make it happen. So why not reach
productivity goals while rowing a boat in the Hamptons instead of dragging the day
with trips to the office water cooler.