Working from Home?

Joe D

A Typical ‘Day in the Life’

Some online businesses have offices – others have offices in the home.

However you work – wherever you work - whatever equipment you use to accomplish your work – there is no typical online entrepreneur. For the webmaster entrepreneur, the average “day in the life” is something that most people who work in the traditional outside business world would never envision.

Webmasters come in all shapes and sizes - men and women - single, married, divorced or widowed - Some with children – some without… Some are just beginning their families, others are experiencing life as a grandparent. Some are religious – others are not. Some live in big cities – others live in way-out rural areas [as long as they have access!]. These webmasters live all over the world, cloned in every country… Some like to party – some prefer a quiet night at home. Some are uber technical geeks and some are marketing gurus. Some got started in the early days at the inception of the World-Wide-Web – and some have only just begun to make their mark on the e-commerce world… Webmasters come in all shapes and sizes…

I know many successful women who use initials online to remain gender anonymous in pulling in lucrative consulting contracts where personal contact has never been required beyond email and instant messaging – talk about eliminating the glass ceiling – think about that one.

With that foundation and the old YMMV (your mileage may vary) firmly in mind, don’t assume anything when interacting with remote colleagues, contacts and business entrepreneurs online – diversity has been the key to online industry drive, innovation, and success. Working online is the perfect antidote to working in a real world filled with cubicles, punch clocks and deadlines. You can work at your own pace, create your own schedule – put in a 14 hour day, or just pop in for a few minutes to check email. It all depends upon your personal business model, goals, your focus and what is required of you on a daily basis as far as maintenance, development and supervision for the advancement of your proprietary enterprise.

Let’s throw out an in-general idea of what it’s like to be a work-from-home e-commerce entrepreneur or webmaster. Let’s say this person is an affiliate webmaster. Here might be a look through the virtual window into an average day:

8:00 AM – Wake up, check stats, make coffee and begin reading e-mail and instant messages that came in over the night.

10:00 AM – Check server stats, affiliate program sites and see what sales/traffic came in overnight.

11:00 AM – Check stats, work on site building targeting niches and sponsors for affiliate program sales. Eat lunch at desk while working.

Noon – Check stats.

1:00 PM – Check stats.

2:00 PM – Check stats.

3:00 PM – Check stats.

4:00 PM – Check stats, begin submitting sites to link lists, TGPs or favorite traffic generation tool of choice.

7:00 PM – Take a little AFK (away from keyboard) break to spend time with the family before the spouse has a fit and declares you legally dead.

9:00 PM – Back to work building sites, checking stats, looking for listings and responding to e-mails and instant messaging.

12:00 AM – “Free time” now available to check stats, check webmaster forums, read up on industry news and catch up on what’s happening in the biz world.

3:00-4:00 AM – Get up after passing out on keyboard, wipe the imprint of the letters GHJKL from your forehead, check stats and toddle off to bed…

Well, you get the picture. There’s a lot more involved in working online – even as an average webmaster.

Of course the “typical” schedule above does not include emergencies that come up – analyzing stats, your host crashing, database issues, problems with sponsors, signing up for new programs, piss fights on the boards and locating and purchasing new content… Then there are events including meeting with your accountant at tax time, speaking with your attorney about issues and how they affect you, oh, and networking with the big traffic gurus to get your sites listed. The queue of daily duties, responsibilities and options that webmasters have to consider each day goes on and on – and of course, will vary with each individual and business – and for those traditional owners and bosses that think remote workers work less than office workers? Banish that weary timeworn misconception; remote workers spend more time at the computer on focused tasks, become more skilled at multi-tasking and are generally happier and more productive than their equivalent office workers...but everyone is unique, which continues to drive the evolution of the WWW…

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