I didn’t mean to become a work-at-home mom.  When my company laid me off after the merger, I almost gave up hope of finding something flexible enough to fit in with the demands of my family.  But at the invitation of her career counselor, I found a data entry job that promised to make full use of my typing skills and provide me the flexibility I was looking for.

So what’s the confession?  That I love it?  I do, but let me dig a little deeper for those who are thinking of heading down this road. 

Confession #1: It’s Not for Everyone

I ended up working with a small consulting firm.  I help them with presentations and do a lot of the billing and administrative work to support the firm.  I sit at a computer for 7 hours a day and process reimbursements, edit presentations, make travel arrangements for the partners, and do some light document maintenance in a SharePoint where the firm’s consultants store their documents.

You might envy my commute, but if you are a highly social person with big needs for affirmation and human contact, this isn’t for you.  Sure, I’m at a place in my life where flexibility is more important than other job perks.  But if you don’t have the temperament for long hours without adult conversation and for self motivation, steer clear of all work at home opportunities.

My career counselor pointed me in this direction because I actually enjoy time alone.  It energizes me.  Too much socializing seems to drain me.  I don’t know why.  I might be flawed at some deep level.  I just know that’s me.  And knowing me helps me find opportunities that are right for me. 

Confession #2: I Actively Manage Office Relationships

Working in an office, I can’t help but trip over my colleagues and boss many times a day.  But working at home means that I have to intentionally manage relationships that otherwise would wither on the vine. 

I do this in two ways; formally and informally.

I set up meetings with the people I serve to hear more about their needs and get feedback on the work I’m doing.  And I do this informally in that I intentionally reach out to people in the firm on birthdays, after important client milestones, or simply to connect.  I try not to bug them, just spend a few minutes over skype to let them know I’m here and want to help.

It works.  I’ve found the health of office relationships growing as I intentionally manage them.  And I’m finding my job expand as I grow. 

Confession #3: They Trained Me To Do This

My former job, that large corporation that decided to merge and fire me, well they trained me for the job I’m in now.  Thank you.  Anybody who can type well, can navigate most of the Microsoft Office applications or other applications you find in most office settings are perfect candidates for a data entry work at home opportunity.  I know I was.

Yes I was bitter after the layoff, but I’m back on my feet now and loving where I’m at now.  I don’t know if I’ll ever go back to a traditional job.  So in the end, I won and they lost talent.  In the end, I confess that it all worked out well for me although I noticed their stock price never recovered.  At least one of us is doing well.

Janet Stein is a writer and contributor to the website Job Finding Secrets.Com.  To learn more about data entry work at home opportunities, visit Work From Home For Free

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