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Working from home sounds like a dream come true to many, especially moms who work outside the home. Many people ask how I landed a job that allows me to work from home. I want to share with you the story of how I ended up working from home and tips for landing your own work from home job.
Before I began working from home with my current job I drove to an office every day. I’m in business to business sales. The company I previously worked for is a large corporation that provides HR services to small businesses. My job included finding small business owners who could benefit from outsourcing their HR, Payroll, Benefits, etc. Besides meeting with potential prospects or going over deals with other reps or managers, most of the work is possible to do from home. But they want to see you in the office. I enjoyed the challenge of the work and my manager was great but things seemed to change once I had my son.
While I was out on maternity leave my manager was transferred to another state. When I came back to work I was assigned a new manager. Unfortunately, he was the type of manager who wanted to break you down to build you back up himself. With all my post pregnancy hormones this did not go over very well with me. I was starting to become very unhappy at work.
Then, I was assigned a new manager and things got even worse. Let’s just say she was eventually fired due to an HR issue. They say people usually quit, not because they hate the job but because they hate their manager. Yep, I was struggling to find motivation to drive into the office and get through work every day. There may have even been a few tears shed. It’s a horrible state of mind to be in but there are ways out.
Change is Good
Looking back these bad situations actually led me to where I am today. Because I was so miserable I began looking for a way out, another job I could look forward to going to. Being in sales and keeping close relationships with my clients I began to talk with them and see what sort of opportunities they may have available.
One of my clients, who I rather enjoyed visiting and talking with, started asking me what I wanted out of my next job. Being able to work from home was on the top of my list. We kept in touch and a few months later we met for lunch and he told me he had a sales position open and I could work from home. It was a scary step to take. I’d be working for a small business, in a field I knew very little about and initially I would take a pay cut, but the increase in quality of life was worth it. I’m so thankful for that opportunity because I feel like it has truly changed my life.
Tips For Getting A Work From Home Job
While I was able to use my client base to find a work from home job there are other ways. Here a few ideas you might want to try.
- Negotiate Where You Are– If you love your current job but just hate the drive or could use the flexibility of being able to work from home talk with your boss. If you’ve been there long enough and have a proven track record for getting things done you should have some leverage. Suggest maybe spending two days a week working from home and the other days in the office. Employers that value you should be willing to work with you. I love the scene in Bad Moms (if you haven’t seen it, do so immediately, it’s hilarious) at the end when her boss says he needs her back. Instead of just saying yes she lays out what she wants, including two days a week to work from home.
- Get Nosy– Ask people you know who work from home what they do and how they got that job. Ask friends & family who have businesses if they could use your help or know someone who could. It really is all about relationships and who you know. Don’t be afraid to ask people questions. People love to talk about themselves. If you don’t ask the answer is always no.
- Use your Connections/Relationships– In my case I used my relationships with clients to seek out a work from home opportunity. Think about the relationships you currently have with either clients or vendors. Close relationships will help you have open conversations with those you work with outside your company. You can get their honest opinion about the company culture and what opportunities may be available.
Go For It
If working from home is something you’d really like to pursue there’s nothing to stop you from going for it. If it’s important enough, you’ll find a way to make it happen. Remember it never hurts to ask. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no.