Career Corner: How to Be Productive Working from Home | AIChE

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Career Corner: How to Be Productive Working from Home


You might think working from home is easy. You could avoid the stress of commuting and even work in your pajamas if you want. While such a work arrangement may seem ideal, it is not always easy to stay focused if you are not in a typical office environment. I have been running my consulting practice from my home office since 1996, and I know firsthand how easily I get distracted. As I prepared to write this column, I became curious about how other home-based professionals stay focused and productive.

When he’s not traveling to client sites, Jack Pankoff, founder and principal of Production Excellence, Inc. (Centennial, CO), works from home full-time. He believes following a daily work management plan is the key to home-based efficiency. Pankoff gets up early, works on his book manuscript for a few hours, then hits the gym. The rest of his morning is dedicated to client projects or business planning and development. After lunch, he edits his morning drafts. “Being disciplined and having daily goals is what helps me stay productive and find work-life balance,” he says.

Phil Kornbluth, president of Kornbluth Helium Consulting (Bridgewater, NJ), agrees that it is important to be disciplined and set boundaries when working from home. He has run his global helium business development practice from home for about a year and has discovered “there can be more distractions when working from home. Boundaries...

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