How to Communicate Effectively While Working From Home
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How to Communicate Effectively While Working From Home

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Freelancing and working remotely is more common now than ever before. In fact, freelancing in the United States is the fastest-growing market in the world, bringing in nearly one trillion dollars in 2019. And even though working remote has been around for a while, it’s more popular now than ever.

I always wondered how people managed to work from home until I was forced into it. Quite frankly, I have learned a lot of things about myself and my productivity by working from home, and I’m sure by this point you have too.

But if you’re just starting to balance the freelance life with other obligations it could be a bit daunting. So, I’m here to remind you to take a breath and remember one important freelancing and working from home comes down to one important aspect: communication.

It’s no secret that everyone has “excellent communicator” on their resume, but let’s face it: not everyone is the best at it.  And if you’re not the best communicator, that’s okay! But I encourage you to use your time on as a way to improve that skill. And yes, you can still keep it on your resume even if you’re working on it.

The honest truth is that employers – whether you’re full-time or freelance – want to know what you’re up to. Sure, they want to give you the freedom to do your work, but I find that they appreciate updates without having to prompt someone.

The best way to fix that for someone who freelances? Get into a routine.

I always email my bosses after I finish a day’s work. I don’t necessarily give them a play-by-play but I do give them a run down.  Whether you have a good memory or need to set a reminder for the end of your work day, this kind of communication can go a long way.

Even if you’re a great communicator, sometimes projects can go awry because of miscommunication.  Regardless of who may be at fault, I suggest a couple of things.

First of all, if you think it’s your fault: own up to it.

From personal experience, people respect you more if you can be straight up. There’s no point in passing around the blame, especially if you work with a team. That just creates unnecessary tension, and who wants that when you’re not actually in an office space working with these people? No one.

My second suggestion is: Call your team.

Yes, I mean pick up your phone and make an actual call. I think younger generations (and I’m part of it) typically hide behind emails and text messages, but we should strive to link up with someone when we need to clear something up.  It just makes things easier for everyone to move on from the blunder and learn from it.

Unfortunately, that’s where I think miscommunications happen the most. If we chat through email, sometimes things get lost in translation. And that’s not our fault – that’s just how the world works. But making a simple phone call can clear up a lot of confusion.

Of course, my suggestions are not one-size-fits-all. But if you find yourself working from home these days and need a quick fix when it comes to communication, just try them out and see if it works.