I am based in the UK and have been working from home since I started with LifeSize in 2008. Yes, at first there were adjustments to be made and it was a bit weird to be in an office of just “me, myself and I”. But now, I wouldn’t change it for the world. My commute time is approximately 5 seconds (from the kitchen upstairs to my office), my wardrobe now has a variety of slippers (work shoes!) sitting next to my weekend heels, and any chit-chat with coworkers simply happens over video rather than around the water cooler.
Even though I am not physically based in the Austin headquarters (or even in the United States for that matter), I am productive, motivated and an integral member of the team, all thanks to video conferencing. But most importantly, I have the flexibility to spend more time with my 14-month-old daughter. As a busy mum, the mornings are still a bit of a rush but I can meet with my EMEA and APAC colleagues in the morning, pick my little girl up from nursery in the afternoon, play with her for an hour or so until my husband gets home to ‘take over’ baby duties, and then I’m back at work for when my team in Austin comes online. I have my US meetings over video and still have time to bathe my daughter and put her to bed. Perfect.
I know my entire family is benefiting from the fact that I am able to work flexibly, and I can only imagine how many other working mothers would appreciate the same arrangement. It’s amazing how easily the typical office scenario can be replicated at home with video conferencing. Video technology allows me to maintain connected relationships with my colleagues, while still being able to live in the UK and take care of my growing family. To me, the real benefit of telecommuting is achieving the perfect work/life balance. It really is the future of business, and I am living proof that it really can work.