What Telecommuters Really Do at Home

Many watch TV—but they're still productive: studies

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Jun 30, 2012 3:42 PM CDT

(Newser) – If you work at home, you may have just been caught red-handed: Business Week reports on a new survey finding that, while on the clock:

  • 43% of telecommuters watch TV or a movie
  • 35% do chores around the house
  • 28% make dinner
  • 26% take naps
  • 24% have a drink
  • 20% play video games

But another recent survey found that people who work from home are actually more productive than those who work in an office. OK, so that study was focused on a Chinese travel agency, but it makes sense that telecommuters would be more productive—despite the distractions, writes Paul Waldman on Prospect.org. Why? Because there are just as many distractions for office workers, who frequently surf the web, take long lunches, and chat with co-workers. "The fact that you do it in an office while wearing a tie doesn't mean it more closely resembles real work than watching last night's Colbert at noon," he points out.

A telecommuter and her cat pause to do some work at home.   (Shutterstock)
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