Business Interruption! How does the weather affect your work?

Where I live in Aberdeen, THIS is the kind of weather that we have been dealing with this week.

In fact I was lucky enough to be getting a tour at the STV news Studio on Tuesday night when pictures like the above of ‘Sea Foam in Fittie’ was breaking news. The general consensus of the staff and news presenters at STV was that the Brits LOVE an extreme weather report.

As a Nation, we are obsessed with weather. Usually because it impacts our day to day life significantly. A tree falling on a bus, a car crash caused by icy roads, or an entire community covered in smelly sea foam – is attention grabbing – and mixes things up!

Weather will be continuously on our screens and at the forefront of our minds as we get our wooly jumpers and winter tyres on in the next few months….

So besides it affecting our evening news, our facebook and twitter feeds, and our walking, cycling and driving conditions – and our chat in the office or with friends, how does the weather cause business interruptions – and how does this affect Contractors and Freelancers?

Flexibility of Work

If you are a Contractor providing a continuous service to your End Client, you will have a contract in place to ensure that you will deliver the requirements. You will also have in place a degree of flexibility and control in how you work to deliver the end product. If you live out of town, and you look out of the window to a white snowy scene, you can often decide to work at home for a day.

Offshore contractors unfortunately don’t have this luxury when stuck on a rig!

Freelancers, who decide their own working hours, can work when they please, perfect if you are a night owl, but remember to take any meetings or deliveries to be made to your clients into consideration. Freelancers, who create products which may need to be shipped to clients, will need to take into consideration weather conditions and how these will impact the delivery service.

Increased Productivity?

A new Harvard Business School study, ‘Rainmakers: Why Bad Weather Means Good Productivity’ shows that a decrease in sunny weather is directly linked to an increase in worker efficiency. Which I guess kind of makes sense as I know I am certainly more likely to take a nice full lunch break on a sunny day and have a walk along the river, than I am on a day when the weather’s bad and I’ll come back with a wiry mop of rain soaked hair on my head!

It’s unlikely that we will see much more of the sun this year, but the upside is we can look forward to producing much more work because of it. Even better, as a contractor or freelancer, chances are you are going to be able to keep producing this work from home when the sun is replaced by winter storms, any business interruption should be minimised, and the money keeps rolling in!

What do you think? How does the weather impact your working life? Comments are welcomed.

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