Would you make a good remote worker?
Remote working is fast becoming a staple of the modern workplace, particularly in startups and small tech companies.
When fishing in the same pool of talent as larger corporates, remote working can be a nice alternative to big budget perks.
Flexible working practices like remote working allow employees greater autonomy and employers wider access to talent. However, not everyone is cut out for this style of work. It takes discipline, transparency and excellent wifi.
Here’s what you need to be an effective remote worker.
Be an excellent communicator
As you won’t physically be around your colleagues and managers, it’s important that you can communicate well via phone, text, video call and email. That means staying on top of your correspondence and replying promptly. Just because you’re not in the office doesn’t mean you can make less effort to collaborate.
You also need to be conscious of your tone so that you’re being courteous and respectful. A lot can be misinterpreted without the context of body language and facial expression.
You need to be a self-starter who can work independently without frequent support from a manager. You need to show initiative and be confident in your own decision making. You also need the discipline and drive to work when you’re not being monitored by your superiors.
Get your priorities straight
To be an effective remote worker you need to be highly organised and have an excellent grasp on how to prioritise your tasks. The ability to limit distractions and focus your concentration is a big asset. It’s crucial that you understand what takes precedence in your schedule and that you’re able to differentiate the important from the urgent.
Be accountable for your own performance. Be sure you’re getting through your workload by setting yourself deadlines and adhering to them. If you have issues address them quickly and honestly. Don’t wait until you’ve missed a deadline or event to point out there were problems with it. This is important to gain trust with your manager even when you’re not working in the same place.
You need to have a good handle on communication technology to keep in contact with your colleagues and update them on your progress. Make the most of screen sharing, video conferencing, messaging apps and project collaboration software. This helps you to keep your team informed of progress without requiring frequent phone calls.