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Worried About Going Completely Remote? Here’s How to Handle It 

By Arooj Shakeel
October 5, 2023

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We’ve seen how working styles change across generations over the years. However, the pandemic has accelerated this process. COVID left us with many changes, but one, in particular, stands out, and it has to do with how businesses do business and operate, regardless of industry. Undoubtedly, remote work has existed for a long time, but many businesses have only recently started to use it extensively. 

Certain benefits have been discovered for both employers and employees. Lower absenteeism, higher productivity, and lower costs associated with offices and their upkeep benefit businesses. Additionally, employees’ autonomy grows as they are given more freedom to manage their workload on a more flexible schedule, better balance their personal and professional lives, and reduce commute costs. These benefits have an impact by increasing employee satisfaction and, as a result, productivity. But how does the transition from a completely on-site to a remote position look?

Getting used to a new work culture

What are your thoughts on it? Anxious? Frustrated? Bored? Perhaps it is difficult to isolate a single emotion because there is never just one. Working remotely eliminates the benefits of seeing deliverables immediately, reading the team’s body language, and visually identifying who is “present.” There are also no cafeteria chats, brief conversations, or spontaneous jokes among coworkers that could lead to bonding.

We can develop emotional skills due to this change, allowing us to stay connected despite the distance. Empathy has helped me connect with others and understand their positions and points of view.

Be aware of your surroundings. 

Pay attention to what’s going on around you when you’re working outside the office. When you get up to order a coffee or use the loo in a coffee shop, don’t leave your laptop open and unattended on a table. Passers-by could see your screen and photograph it, or worse, steal your laptop! Remember the significance of confidentiality. If you don’t want someone hacking into your computer to steal your data, avoid video chatting about sensitive topics in restaurants and using public wireless networks that aren’t password-protected.

Tools that are still useful when working remotely 

  1. A minimum of 20 Mbps internet connection. 
  2. To host virtual meetings and facilitate communication, use messaging tools such as Slack, Teams, or Zoom. 
  3. Google Drive and Google Docs, or another method for transferring documents between computers. 
  4. VPN access is required to connect to company/client servers. A laptop containing all of the company/client’s applications. Call and video conferencing headset.

Consider the number of connected devices, the size of your home, the distance between the router, and any obstacles to enjoy the best internet connection possible at home. Work in an area where nothing will interfere with the wireless signal. 

Structure and adaptability 

The routine is established in the traditional work model, and we all know what to do, from clocking in early in the morning to clocking out in the afternoon and returning home. However, the transition to remote work necessitates additional effort on our part.

You must be very conscious of the structure of your schedules now that you have more flexibility, especially in the beginning. Distractions abound as you prepare to establish new habits and routines. I recommend that you create your schedule. Get a digital or physical calendar, and begin defining the most important activities to be completed monthly, weekly, and daily, as well as the amount of time you will devote to them. Routines and habits will likely shift as you experiment with what feels most convenient for work and personal plans.

Relationship Building 

As you transition to working remotely, you must say goodbye to the small but valuable social interactions occurring naturally at the office and the daily face-to-face contact with colleagues. It may be not easy, especially if you are now the only person working at a specific location or region. In this case, the company may arrange face-to-face reunions to endorse integration at least once a year. You might even miss out on going out with coworkers after work or clearing your mind for a few minutes while chatting during break time. 

To Summarize 

Remote work means different things to people depending on how it is approached. Being able to manage my time so that all of my personal, family, and professional responsibilities can coexist in one location is what remote work means to me. It also means having the freedom to choose where I work, to take care of the important people, to be with them in significant moments, and to choose how I want to spend my day. Some people are more productive in the morning, others in the afternoon or evening, some prefer synchronous communication, others asynchronous communication, and so on. 

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