5 Professional Gaffes to Avoid When Working from Home

The following post is from Prerna of The Mom Writes:

source: free digital photos

Working from home gives you many conveniences – flexibility, autonomy, comfort. However, it also means that you have a greater responsibility towards your business. How you conduct yourself determines the reputation your business will enjoy.

Here are 5 things to avoid when you’re a work-at-home professional:

1. Taking People for Granted

First things first, never take others for granted.

Don’t disrespect their time, their knowledge or their efforts. Examples of taking people for granted:

  •  Not showing up for meetings on time
  • Not acknowledging a job well done
  • Always asking to ‘pick their brain’ without any compensation
  • Not giving credit where credit is due

No one wants to work with someone who takes you for granted, right?

 2. Not Delivering as Promised

Ever had the experience where you are promised something but you get something totally different, and not in a nice way? Yes, make sure that when you make a promise to a client or colleague, you deliver on it. If you drop the ball, have the grace to apologize and make up for it in some way.

 3. Idle Gossip and Ill Talking

It is very sad but true that sometimes people get carried away and talk ill of other businesses or peers. The online work world isn’t very different from the offline work world and gossip and badmouthing others usually comes back to bite us in the wrong place. If you feel you’ve had a bad experience, share it without taking names or take it up with the person concerned and try to resolve it. If you have to take names, make sure you have the facts to back it up.

 4. Not Answering to Emails

Ahhh, I’ve been guilty of this and so I know for a fact that not replying to emails in a timely manner is a big no-no in business. You see, I try to check my email twice a day and sometimes, I read an email and think I will reply to it when I log in next but then, it just slips my mind and before I know it, three days have passed! Yikes!

The solution to this isn’t checking your email every hour. It is batching your emails into slots of an hour or more and knocking them off in one good go.

5. Delaying Payments or Deliveries for No Reason

I’ve been on the receiving end of these more than once, and trust me, it isn’t a nice place to be in.

I’ve followed up with a client for payment for blog content for over a month, and the payment reaches me over 2 months late with not a word of apology. Now,  I don’t write a word for the client until the money is in my account. She may still have me on her team, but she doesn’t have my respect as a professional.

Similarly, I followed up with a designer for a design job for over a month, after having paid her in advance for her time, and I still haven’t received what I paid for. Repeated emails and Facebook messages have led to nothing. I’ve given up hope and the designer’s just given up a potential long-term client.

Unless you have a critical emergency, try to deliver on or before your deadlines and if you’ve hired someone for a job, respect their time and efforts, and pay them on time. In any case, if there is ever a delay, let the other person know. They will respect you all the more for it.

What do YOU think are no-nos for work-at-home professionals to help keep their online reputations stellar and spotless?

Prerna Malik is a mom, a wife, a writer and woman who believes in being postively productive, parenting with love and creating a home that invites you to put your feet up and relax. Find her sharing her journey and experiences with productivity and parenting at The Mom Writes.