Being a remote employee sounds great in theory, but it does involve its own unique set of issues and challenges.
If you work from home, there’s the sense of isolation and lack of people to bounce ideas off of. If you work from a café, you have to deal with any number of distractions, from screaming kids to employees barking out coffee orders. If you work in a co-working space, we’ll there’s the cost.
In addition to the issue of surroundings, there are also issues related to productivity and communication. Simply put, being a good remote worker requires some planning, thought and discipline. Below are a few quick tips on how you can be an effective remote worker.
Establish a Dedicated Work Space
Whether you work from home, a cafe or a co-working space, ensure you have dedicated area to work in comfortably. Establishing your own little kingdom can help you set your mind to working. If you feel a location may not be working out, experiment with different work environments.
Establish a Routine
Be sure to establish “official” working hours with your client or supervisor. Once you have established those hours and they are working out well, stick to them. Then, break down your hours into smaller chunks based on how you think you will be most productive. For instance, if you tend to be more driven in the morning, you should handle your most brain-busting work then and handle your administrative or creative tasks in the afternoon.
Establish a Strategy for Managing Deadlines
Many businesses let their remote workers operate at their own pace, provided they deliver optimal work and hit deadlines. If you have significant latitude over your schedule, it means you are responsible for planning and scheduling, which requires a good system and personal discipline.
Communicate Regularly and Professionally
Regularly check in with your client, supervisor and co-workers. If you are an employee, not a contractor, and the company’s office is nearby, make a point to stop in regularly. Regular face-to-face interactions can make electronic communication so much easier.
When communicating over email or text, be sure to avoid any miscommunications by spelling out everything. Avoid joking around unless you’ve built up a solid rapport with someone. And never send an email or text when you’re upset or angry. Always maintain a light and upbeat tone.
Maintain a Professional Mindset
People often joke about “working in their pajamas” when talking about remote work, and while you could do that – a better approach is to get cleaned up and put on some decent clothes, even if you’re working from a home office. When you feel “put together” and look good, you’re more likely to do good work.
Also, if you’re working from a café or co-working space, maintain a clean, organized work area.
Let Us Help You Find a Remote Work Arrangement
If you would like your next job to include the freedom and flexibility of a remote work arrangement, please contact Thompson Technologies today. Our clients often have such positions and we would be happy to connect you to these opportunities.