It’s 8:00 AM and your alarm clock is blaring the angriest sound it knows. You’ve got a busy day ahead of you. A long commute awaits, as do deadlines and meetings all morning into the afternoon. By 10:30 AM, just as you finally get settled into your desk, it’ll be time for lunch before returning to your desk to plow through more work until it’s home time at 5:30 PM sharp. This is an average weekday for many people in a traditional office setting.
So what if I told you there was another way? What if we said that with a few adjustments to how you currently work, everything could change? It sounds like a fairy tale, but what if I told you that a new work model has been emerging for a while now, one that promises more free time and less stress?
What is remote work
Remote work is defined as “the ability to have a flexible work schedule with part-time or occasional teleworking, including the ability to work from home.” It also refers to an alternative workplace with the reduced physical presence of employees at any given time during normal business hours. Working for an employer or company that allows you to complete tasks within your own house. Unlike the traditional office space, remote workers do not have to commute to their place of employment. They can work in their home, coffee shops, libraries, etc. Remote work is good for employees because it provides more time flexibility and control over their schedule. Employees also benefit from doing their work within a comfortable environment which often leads them to be more productive. It has only recently become popular around the lockdowns but many benefits show why it will continue to grow in popularity. Since most companies are already starting to join this trend, it will most likely become normal and expected in the future.
This concept allows employers and employees greater flexibility by allowing them to accomplish tasks outside of their regular office space. To put it simply; working remotely means doing all of your work from your home or any place with a good internet connection you find comfortable.
Remote workplaces allow companies to hire the best workers regardless of where they are in the world. This helps entrepreneurs around the world hire the best talent without having to pay for an expensive local office. This becomes even stronger when you consider that more than half of millennials say they would take a pay cut if it meant they could work remotely. Of course, there are some drawbacks as well such as employees working from home can become unproductive if they don’t turn off the distractions around them such as social media and television. They can also become distracted by their family or other household activities that occur throughout their day. We will look closely at the benefits and drawbacks of working remotely in the next sections.
The concept of remote work was first brought up in the 1970s although it wasn’t until recently that employees started to see this trend grow. The reason why remote work didn’t become popular until now is that technology was not advanced enough to make it sustainable for both employees and employers. It wasn’t until social media, video conferences, and remote work websites came on the rise and allowed employees to easily communicate with their employers, clients, and other workers that the trend of remote work became popular. Now, especially after the coronavirus, employers and employees both realize the benefits of working remotely and it is only going to grow in popularity.
When the lockdowns were first starting, businesses were worried that they would lose their workers and their business. Corona caused many businesses throughout cities across the world to lose money every minute an employee couldn’t make it to work, so companies decided they needed a solution. This is when both employers and employees realized that remote work was possibly the best solution for these problems. Remote working was already a growing trend when the lockdowns started but not many employers were actually able to hire and keep remote talent.
An entirely remote setup for an organization begins with hiring individuals who are passionate about working online. Each person will have the capabilities of doing their work independently without having to meet up regularly in an office space. This allows employees to be more productive and creative since they are not limited by time or location. This can also save money like, for example, hiring freelancers instead of renting out office spaces around the world. This helps to compete with other companies much easier. A suitable tech stack also needs to be provided to every member of the team to allow them to stay connected with others and the organization as a whole.
Each team member should be provided with communication tools that not only allow them to communicate during work hours but outside of work as well. This helps strengthen their bond with the company, which is essential for success. Furthermore, knowing how to use communication tools such as Trello for task management, Slack for communication between team members, Google Drive & Dropbox for file sharing, and Zoom or GoToMeeting (please not Skype) for video conferencing will create an efficient workflow in any business. These tools are key components when working remotely since they can help increase productivity by creating a more efficient environment.
Overall, companies who hire individuals or teams for remote work benefit greatly from it. They can hire the best talent regardless of location which allows them to compete in different areas around the world without much trouble. These benefits don’t stop at hiring either; you can save a lot by reducing their office costs, decrease operational expenses, and reduce time wasted due to traffic, commuting, finding the right conference room, etc. This is because lots of people usually find themselves more productive when they work independently especially if they are passionate about what they do. Another benefit is that remote workers are not bound by physical locations, therefore, allowing them to travel as much as they please without necessarily needing to take a lot of days off.
An interesting fact is that the concept of modern time working from home was first implemented by IBM in 1979 when they moved five employees fully remote. This idea was pushed forward by the oil embargo as a possible solution to reduce gasoline consumption. When people are working from home, they are commuting less. In 1983 the number of people working from home for IBM grew to 2000. By 1987 approximately 1.5 million Americans were working from home and some of the biggest companies were experimenting with telecommuting. The company that brought telecommuting into the mainstream was AT&T with its famous program called “Working from Home” in 1993.
Remote work allows workers to focus on their home lives instead of traveling long distances to make it to the office. The idea of telecommuting has been around for over 30 years but was too expensive until recently when high-speed Internet became more widespread throughout the world. This is why remote working became a trend in recent years since it allows companies and employees to save money while increasing productivity by not having to commute or waste time between tasks. Furthermore, this concept also helps combat poverty rates in countries with low Gross National Income (GNI) by promoting entrepreneurship because many people won’t have to move to big cities where they can’t afford living expenses.
The era of information technology provided the workforce with an opportunity for flexibility which changed how people work. Instead of having to fit in with the 9 to 5 style of work, people can make their own schedules while working either full-time or part-time (with contract/freelance).
Why is remote work beneficial?
I have been part of distributed teams for most of my career. These teams were spread across different cities in my country or other countries abroad. I have also worked with international teams that had people from all over the world which allowed me to learn how they interact in a virtual environment.
One of the biggest positives about remote work is flexibility. Desk jobs take up much time that could be spent on other things-like hobbies or self-care. Remote workers have an increased ability to customize their schedules while maintaining a healthy work-life balance. No more early morning commutes or rushing to finish a certain number of tasks. You can actually spend your time doing the things you want when you want. Another great thing about remote work is that it produces better results. Companies have seen higher worker productivity from their employees who work from home as opposed to those who commute every day. On top of that, people tend to take fewer breaks and shorter lunch breaks when they’re not limited by an office.
People are more motivated when they don’t have to commute or deal with office politics since it is easier for them to focus on the tasks at hand. They tend to be more organized because they have fewer distractions which leads them to complete their responsibilities faster compared to people working in big cities where distractions are everywhere.
A remote work environment is a godsend for the modern, tech-savvy individual.
Remote working has been great for people that need flexibility on when they can go home due to caring responsibilities, such as kids or pets. This makes the remote working lifestyle perfect for people who want to be parents and still maintain a career. The freedom of working from home helps children integrate better into modern life too. For example, if you have a family with kids then being able to spend more time with them is great for everybody involved. If people who prefer working from home are happier on average, then this means they are less likely to leave their jobs which will keep employers happy as well.
Another group that benefits from remote working options is people living in rural areas. Not all of us have the luxury of a city or town close by that offers a job market with opportunities tailored to our skillset. For people that live in far-flung places, their nearest town can be hours away by public transport. A lot of these areas are also economically deprived, further limiting options to get into the job market. So for workers in rural areas, remote working can be the only feasible option to get into the job market.
Remote working options give employees freedom of choice, whether that is picking a workspace according to what they need at the time, such as a quiet corner to concentrate on, or a collaborative environment where creativity and ideas can flourish. Remote working is also perfect for when you want to take a break in between or to do some outside work in the sun.
Travelers also benefit from remote working options. A lot of people choose to work remotely when they go on vacation or endless trips around the world. Many places offer good connectivity where you can work. As mentioned previously, remote work allows employees/contractors freedom so they can travel as much as possible. If you enjoy traveling, then this is great for you! There are many countries out there that offer lower costs of living so you can visit often without spending too much money or taking extra days off. This will also reduce any stress related to traveling since you don’t have to worry about the logistics of getting from point A to point B. We’ll look closely into what being a digital nomad means later.
Businesses start allowing people to work at home. Some possible reasons are: saving money, attracting good talent, being more productive, growing your business by not being limited geographically…
Let’s have a look at what benefits it can have for the employee first. Working remotely offers independence, flexibility but also responsibility since you are not monitored all day long anymore. This can be great for parents, people with disabilities, or anyone that needs to work around their personal schedule. It’s also good to know that working remotely is not only reserved for certain types of jobs but has become more common in various fields. For example, software developers are still the majority when it comes to remote workers, however, there are also other types of jobs where this method of working became very common, like translators, marketers, or consultants.
The fact that you are not limited by your physical space anymore allows you to experience a different kind of arrangement which might inspire you and broaden your view on things. Also, you can create a home office at your desire, which doesn’t have to be just an office chair and desk anymore since you can take your laptop everywhere.
It is also argued that remote workers are often more productive since they set themselves a deadline instead of being told when to do something by a supervisor. Generally, employees have their own daily schedule in which they work best, so if you have complete freedom in this matter it will give you the optimal balance between your personal and professional life.
Another great benefit might be better work-life balance since people report having less stress due to working from home. You can watch your child play soccer or help them with their homework without quitting for the day and nobody will judge you for it. Many people (including myself) find that not having to commute makes you happier and keeps you active outside working hours as well.
Being able to work from home has made the world a much smaller place since you no longer have to travel too far away to meet clients or business partners for meetings. You can discuss things online and make decisions with your team which saves both time and money.
Remote work can help focus and avoid distractions. Also, it makes it harder for people to slack off since they don’t have the option of sleeping in or wasting time by arriving late for example. This type of work enforces discipline which is beneficial to employees who need structure to help them stay on track with their responsibilities.
Remote workers are less likely than traditional office workers (those working full-time at an office) to lose control over important distractions such as chit-chat or socializing with colleagues. They can also avoid office politics since they won’t have to deal with their boss or colleagues in person which allows them to focus more on the task at hand.
On the other hand, businesses can benefit by choosing remote workers. The main reason for this is probably the cost-saving aspect of this type of working arrangement. It’s easier to hire employees in lower-paying jobs because there are fewer requirements needed which makes it less competitive when trying to find candidates. Also, you don’t need to pay for rent, cleaning, building maintenance, etc. for a full-time office anymore.
In the end, it’s all about what each individual wants out of their career and life which makes it hard to argue that working remotely is better or worse than having a regular 9-5. However, if you have the freedom to choose between these two options I’d say go for it and see what works best for you.
It’s one of the growing trends in our modern world when more and more people are starting to work remotely thanks to technological advancements. Also, smartphones allow us to be constantly connected which means you can work anywhere at any time if you choose so. There is also an increasing number of freelancers who prefer to work remotely instead of going to a shared office for example.
Besides saving money and attracting talent, it is also argued that working remotely can increase productivity and creativity. This might be due to the fact that people aren’t disturbed by colleagues or any other distractions during work hours. As we said before employees could also become more efficient since they don’t have a set of rules like ‘from 9:00 AM till 5:00 PM’ which often seem arbitrary to some workers (like myself). It’s definitely not easy for everyone though; some people prefer working in an office environment surrounded by their peers rather than alone at home. For those who struggle with this, there are always companies like WeWork which offer co-working spaces where you can rent a desk, office, etc.
Many managers worry about how employees who work remotely will be able to collaborate effectively. However, in most cases, you can still have video conference calls, share documents, and use apps like the ones mentioned here. There are also tools out there for remote teams which can help create accountability, plan projects better, etc. This is especially common in companies that want to get rid of their office and still build a strong culture among their employees.
Cons of remote work
I love working remotely. But keep in mind I’ve done this my whole life and I had a lot of experience with distributed teams before the pandemic hit. Let’s talk about the cons. Working from home has its downsides too.
Working from home: fun, but requires discipline and motivation
The main benefit of working remotely is that allows the worker to set the schedule they like: early in the morning, late in the evening, or even at night when everyone else is asleep. You can watch your favorite TV shows while you work; cook food; go for a walk; drink coffee; wear pajamas… A regular routine is not needed.
This level of freedom feels great but requires discipline and motivation if you want to do your best work. If you’ve never worked like that before, I’d recommend at first sitting down one hour every morning working. Being up at 7 am is not too bad.
The remote workers’ life is different from what it appears. It is not as easy as it seems because if you are your own boss you need to make all decisions by yourself without getting help from other people around you. Here are some things that will convince you why remote work could be hard for some people:
1. Freedom has a price
You can work from where you want, at what time you want, and with whom you want but it comes with a price. This means that if you have no fixed schedule you have to find motivation within yourself. When you are not under the supervision of your boss, it is easy for people to postpone their work until late in the night when they are tired. This often leads to having less sleep, then stress, anxiety, and a bad mood. Of course, there are ways around this but it still happens to a large number of people.
2. Working remotely takes discipline
If you haven’t worked remotely before, you’ll need a lot of discipline to do your work on time. In a traditional office some subtle things keep you motivated and productive: seeing or talking to co-workers; feeling or being under the supervision of your boss; going out for lunch with your colleagues… These factors don’t exist in remote work so you’ll need to motivate yourself. And motivation is not just telling yourself “I’m going to do it” but also knowing how. For example, setting goals; having a list of tasks; rewarding yourself, knowing when you need to push and when you need to rest.
3. You need to learn how to organize your time
Freedom without structure can be dangerous for you and your work. During the first days of working remotely, I surreptitiously checked my smartphone, received messages on Slack (our team chat), sent emails while doing something else… After a few weeks of this, I realized that all those distractions were making me less productive.
When starting to work remotely you need to think about your daily routine and find out what you should do first thing in the morning; what tasks must be completed during the day; and what things could be postponed until tomorrow. Not having a well-structured routine can make you feel overwhelmed and not productive at all.
4. It is difficult to get the information you need
As a remote worker, it is easy for you to fall into the trap of doing nothing because you are waiting for others to tell you what’s next. I’ve seen many people who start working without having an idea of what they need to do. A good tip for a new remote worker is setting a timer every 15 minutes and doing something, anything… If you don’t know where to start you can just check emails or go through your list of tasks. You may even find some really easy ones that you can do right away.
5. Communication with the team becomes more complicated
The common mistake while working remotely is that people think they can do everything alone. This behavior may cause difficulties in communication with the rest of the team if some members start feeling alienated or ignored because of their lack of participation in certain projects. Even though technology promotes greater efficiency and enables collaboration across different locations, working together on a project face-to-face contact remains important due to all the subtle nonverbal communications taking place between people. This contact can be difficult to achieve if team members are not co-located but are still somewhat achievable through video conferencing or phone calls.
6. Distractions take entirely too much time
There is always something that needs your attention urgently and that will interrupt your work right away: a colleague calling you, a client sending an email, dog whining, magical self-refilling fridge, etc. There will always be distractions and the challenge of working remotely is to minimize their impact on your productivity and focus as much as possible on the main task at hand. Do not let those little things derail you from getting things done!
7. You can become lonely
The remote workers’ life offers many advantages such as flexibility and freedom but this type of lifestyle does come with one caveat: loneliness. If you do not have colleagues around you or spend all day alone in your room then investing time in networking becomes even more important. You need to meet people, make friends who share the same interests, exchange ideas, and become part of a community. Visit conventions related to your hobbies attend lectures, or just go out with friends every now and then.
8. You are not present when you are home
Being around family or friends when working remotely often means that you will only be physical with them but mentally somewhere else. What they say to you goes through one ear and out the other because you are thinking about something else all the time. This way of living is very difficult for people who want to communicate closely with their close ones while being too busy at work all day long. Oftentimes your family won’t understand that being at home doesn’t mean that you’re not at work.
9. No motivation = no results
Motivation plays an essential role when it comes to being productive. And when you work remotely, it can be a challenge to find motivation from within or from your environment. You have to be very self-aware and learn to keep yourself motivated without depending too much on other people’s opinions about what you do. In order for this type of lifestyle to be sustainable in the long term, self-motivation is an absolute must.
10. You may end up isolated socially
If working takes all of your time then this could cause problems in maintaining social connections with other people on a personal level, at least during weekdays or business hours. You may develop communication issues with peers who are outside of your organization because they would not understand what it means to work 24/7 on different projects involving different stakeholders whose needs to be met immediately.
Work-life balance and productivity are among the most common reasons cited by employers to encourage or even require telecommuting. Having a remote workforce can also be beneficial for companies that need to expand into new areas, but don’t want to add overhead costs of opening another office. In spite of these benefits, there are some downsides for employers when it comes to hiring remote workers.
Remote workers may not have many professional relationships If a company requires a certain level of familiarity between its employees, having a geographically diverse workforce does present a challenge. Even if co-workers are connected virtually, it can be harder to build rapport without regular in-person meetings.
Remote workers may lack motivation If they aren’t getting the right kind of support. They might not find sufficient reason to give their all at work. This is especially true when teams are spread across locations that require a significant time investment for communication and collaboration. To prevent this from happening, make sure remote team leaders outline clear objectives with measurable goals. Also consider implementing online tools, like Slack, to encourage open dialogue among remote employees.
Remote employees won’t be able to help with simple errands or tasks. It’s easy for remote team members to miss out on the kind of interactions that simply happen naturally when you’re in an office environment. This can lead to frustration and misunderstandings between coworkers if team leaders aren’t careful about how these interactions play out. To avoid potential issues, make sure team leaders clearly outline which tasks can and cannot be performed remotely by employees.
Online opportunities/distractions may tempt remote workers and reduce productivity. When telecommuters work from home, they’re usually given a greater level of autonomy than someone who works in an office environment. While this autonomy brings with it the benefits such as work-life balance, it also means that workers might not have someone watching over them to help prevent distractions or time-wasting. Make sure you clearly establish guidelines about how and when employees should handle non-work-related activities so it doesn’t get all hazy and chaotic.
Remote workers may feel isolated. During the interview process, remote positions require applicants to show they’re capable of working autonomously. Some people may be more suited to remote work than others, so hiring everyone who applies for a remote job may not always be the best approach. Remote workers are responsible for their own time management, so it can be difficult to get them up to speed if they have limited experience working on their own.
When you hire new employees, it’s important to consider whether or not they will work well in a telecommuting environment. While some people flourish when given the opportunity to work remotely, others might thrive in an office setting instead.
No matter what business you’re in, it’s always a good idea to invest in the success of your team members. The more motivated and productive they are, the better their final output will be as well as their level of job satisfaction.
Every remote worker needs guidance, structure, and support to work comfortably. If you want your team members to perform at their best no matter where they are physically located, make sure you take the time to create a flexible work environment that allows them to focus on what matters most. Finding skilled managers who can balance taking a hands-on approach with empowering their subordinates to work independently will be key to maximizing your remote workers’ potential.
Providing everyone with the tech and equipment they require is also important. It’s frustrating for anyone to not have the tools they need to be successful. Your team members must feel confident that you’ll provide them with everything they need to get their job done right, no matter where in the world they’re physically located. This sometimes means larger bills for businesses, but it’s always better to invest early into the future of your company rather than wait until problems arise.
Remote work is not for everyone. While many people love the sense of freedom that comes with being able to do their job from home, some people thrive on having constant human interaction throughout the day. If you hire someone who prefers an office environment over telecommuting, they might feel isolated without others around them or miss out on opportunities to network with their peers. Not only does this impact overall productivity, but it also reduces the chances your remote employees will stay loyal to your company over time.
Employees need structure and support when they’re working remotely just as much as those in traditional office environments.
If you’re still on the fence about hiring remote team members, think carefully about what role they will play in your company’s existing structure and processes. Not everyone is cut out for working remotely, so make sure you hire the right people, to begin with by properly assessing their strengths and weaknesses.
The term digital nomad was first used as far back as 1996, but it is only recently that the rise of technology has allowed for a substantial impact. Many people around the world have jobs that do not require them to be at an office every day: online retail workers, graphic designers who work remotely for clients across many time zones, even some freelancers can fit their schedules to accommodate travel.
At first glance, this seems like a very privileged lifestyle; having such flexibility with your job opens up all kinds of possibilities in terms of location (provided that you have the proper connections and resources to be effective). Digital nomads are defined as individuals with location-independent occupations that utilize many forms of technology in daily life. Many choose to take on this lifestyle because they can be location independent through freelancing or entrepreneurship, while others are able to work remotely for an employer. Digital nomadism has become popular in recent years due to globalization increasing job opportunities around the world, cheap travel accommodations making it easier to go between locations, and technology enabling them to collaborate with others regardless of geographic location.
However, this lifestyle also has its drawbacks. Not having consistent access to an office can make it harder for employees at remote companies to build rapport with their supervisors and co-workers (although tools are making this easier). Additionally, many digital nomads report difficulties in mastering work/life balance; constant travel combined with irregular working hours takes a toll on personal relationships.
Digital nomads can be location-independent workers who use services like Upwork or Fiverr to find jobs that they can do online, and location-independent entrepreneurs who use their own skillsets (and often their own products) to generate income. Location-independent workers may work part-time or full-time for clients across the world, mitigating the pain of irregular hours by giving them greater control over when and where they take on jobs.
Location independent entrepreneurs are able to travel while continuing to earn revenue. If you have an idea for a business that doesn’t require a specific geographical place to launch successfully, you could be on your way towards independence before you even leave your home country; many successful entrepreneur’s first few tests were run in places like Thailand or Bali, locations known for relatively low operating costs and high quality of life.
The rise of remote work has made it possible for more people than ever to become entrepreneurs without needing to relocate.
You can start a business anywhere, and if you’re successful it may not matter where your office location is. This is what draws many nomads to move to countries with lower costs of living; the market demand means that employers are willing to pay high salaries for talent, so having a lower cost of living has become very appealing.
This lifestyle isn’t just about earning more money – it’s also about gaining more freedom. Regardless of their personal reasons, digital nomads have managed to achieve something unique: they have managed to take the concept of personal branding (a trait associated mostly with career-oriented individuals or those trying to find a job) and it toward their entire life. Nomads aren’t just creating a personal brand for themselves that they can leverage into any job or industry; they are leveraging their entire life to create an experience.
In some cases, people choose this kind of lifestyle because they love to travel and can do so easily while continuing to work remotely. In other cases, especially when starting a business, it’s more about cutting costs and living more affordably.
While it’s possible to maintain a digital nomad lifestyle while continuing to work for one particular company, the benefits of location independence are why this movement is growing rapidly. Nomads can choose where they go and when; there’s no need to relocate or change jobs because you’re unable to afford rent anymore.
Plus, there is absolutely no limit to how many new skills you can learn while on the go. As a self-employed nomad, you will have to wear many different hats in order to get by. Many nomads have started businesses that would have been impossible if they hadn’t been willing and able to adapt to new environments.
The digital nomad lifestyle is becoming more appealing every day, especially as the world becomes smaller through advances in technology. As the price of tech continues to drop and technology becomes easier to use, more people will find it possible to start this kind of lifestyle.
In the future, it may be much more common to see a person who spends a few months in one place and a few months in another instead of someone who lives permanently in one location. It could eventually be just as normal for someone to travel the world and earn a steady income while enjoying an exotic lifestyle.
The idea of location independence is becoming more appealing because there’s no longer any real need to relocate in order to achieve it. We’re not just talking about spending three months traveling through Europe or Southeast Asia: we’re talking about doing what you want when you want, wherever you want.
Of course, if the idea of spending months at a time in foreign countries sounds intimidating or difficult, that may not be what you’re looking for; it’s important to understand the pros and cons of this type of lifestyle before making any major decisions about your future.
How to get used to remote work
What is it about remote work that makes us crave human contact? Why does being alone in an office feel so much more productive than being alone from home? What do we lose when we work from remote locations all day long?
In my opinion, what we gain far exceeds what we lose if we learn how to be productive no matter where we are. Working from a coworking space or a coffee shop can solve some of those issues – but not all of them. There will always be times when you must sit at home with your MacBook and work from there – and those times can be as productive as if in an office, it all depends on you.
The first thing you need to do is make yourself feel comfortable in those situations. Here are some tips on how to get used to remote work:
Work from home for a week or two, not longer if it doesn’t feel right. Make sure you have everything you need at home before you start working from there regularly. If working at home feels too isolated, try working outside the house every now and then. Change your workspace occasionally – go back to your office, coworking space, or coffee shop every couple of weeks, even if it’s just for one day. Alternatively, go somewhere else – try working in different places all the time. Bring work with you when you travel – if you’re going on a business trip, do some work there and pretend that’s your regular office for the duration of the trip; encourage yourself to treat it as such by bringing all your documents and equipment with you (and maybe working hours too). Don’t forget: working remotely doesn’t mean working at home. Working from home only saves money in those situations where it makes sense to save money. When lack of human contact is an issue, stay away from home until you feel comfortable again.
That’s one way of doing it – but does it make sense? What will people think about what I’m doing? Is this really professional behavior?
I’m going to answer all those questions with a single phrase: it depends.
If you have a strong need for human contact, working from home may not be the best option for you. Try working outside the house – by that, I don’t mean only in coworking spaces or coffee shops; try staying away from home until your work is done. Only come back when the pressure eases, and maybe stay later than necessary if nobody’s waiting for you at home (or maybe go straight there afterwards).
On the other hand, if you’re comfortable with remote work and wouldn’t mind lack of human contact then by all means – do what suits you best (provided it doesn’t interfere with your work, of course). It’s not necessary to work where other people are if that doesn’t help you concentrate.
What about the issue with others and what do they think? Well… who cares? Who knows how you work best? How do your coworkers know better than you do what kind of working environment suits you best? As long as both parties (you and your employer) agree on a certain way of working – go for it! Don’t ask for permission when experimenting, but don’t be afraid to share your findings either. If something doesn’t seem right after trying it out – don’t hesitate to make changes. Try different things until everything seems perfect – no need to settle for “okay”.
You choose. And remember – if it doesn’t work out, there’s always another solution. You don’t have to give up on remote work entirely! Make informed decisions and speak up when necessary – that’s what will help everyone involved get more done.
And one last thing… never forget to identify the reasons behind your desire to change how you work. Only by knowing why you do things can you achieve lasting changes that will benefit both yourself and your employer (or customers). And only then, after going through all the trials and tribulations, will you finally be able to say that you’re a truly self-sufficient worker.
Getting used to working remotely doesn’t have to be a big deal – it’s going to take time, but once you get used to not having colleagues around all the time, you’ll see that there are some significant advantages of working from different locations instead. Try mixing things up and giving yourself a break every now and then until you feel comfortable again. And if you don’t feel comfortable at any point? Well, maybe remote work isn’t for you after all 🙂
My experience with remote work
I started working completely remotely around 2015 after I left my job in Sales and was looking for opportunities to work outside of the office. I had little experience with remote working before but I was confident that it would be something good for me.
I experienced very different roles both in terms of organizational structure (startup, agency, Product Company) and positions (SDR, marketing coordinator, manager, product owner, operations manager).
Now I can say that I’m a very successful remote working manager as I’ve built several distributed teams and hired a number of remote workers as well as coached a lot of managers that have never worked with remote employees before. And now after almost 6 years I still think working remotely is a much better experience than being in the office. But here are my first struggles with remote work.
My first experiences in the beginning were:
– Completely flexible time (totally responsible for myself)
– Working from home or just working outside of the office (it can change at any point when you’ll feel it’s better for your personal life) [on condition that there is no meeting between teams]
– Having an option to choose if you’re going to be working inside or outside (like afternoons off, or even weekends – less productive but not all time)
– Communication – everything was happening in chatrooms (it’s really easy to stay up-to-date on your team activities, tasks, and progress). We were using Slack. At the same time, it takes 1 minute to send a message but you’re not obligated to do that all the time if you have other priorities or tasks at the moment.
There were some disadvantages as well:
I experienced some struggles which are typical for teams that are working remotely:
– Meetings without a clear agenda or structure (in terms of conversation or presentation) can make things worse instead of better because of the lack of context and time to think it over
– Lack of physical presence – people may not be as responsible like they might be in a normal office because no one can see them (and vice versa)
– Slow and inconsistent feedback – one person should take responsibility for the lack of timely feedback. And we shouldn’t forget that we should provide the reason why we didn’t do something or why we did what we did (I’m guilty as well sometimes). It’s easier to understand everything if you hear it in person
– Since there is complete flexibility, some employees tend to work at times when they feel most productive; these hours don’t necessarily align with those times when other team members are working. Leaders should try to find the best possible time for their team or they can choose from a group of people with different timezones to cover all times in a day
– Sometimes it’s hard to stay focused on the topic when everyone is working from home with no one around them.
I’m not saying that remote working is perfect but I truly believe it can be done differently in positive ways. I myself am trying to follow the best practices every day and want to share my learnings with you. I believe my team is happy and excited and judging by the massive amounts of work we get done, I believe I have a ton of useful strategies I can share with you.
That’s all for now! Good luck with your endeavors. Happy working!