08 Jan Remote Working: Is it right for you?
Remote working is fast becoming a trend as technology companies continue to innovate and the price of office space increases. In this article, we offer advice on how to know if remote work is right for you. The internet has changed how we work and long gone are the days where you have to work in an office environment as an employee, contractor or freelancer.
You are going to need to be highly productive, and self-motivated. You will have no one looking over you to evaluate if you are performing at your best.
Trust is a huge part of remote work and you will want to perform to a high standard to prove to your employer or freelance clients that you can be trusted to complete work to deadlines and to a good standard.
Think about what motivates you – do you need people around you to motivate you to work? Do you do your best work when you are collaborating with people in the same room? If the answer is yes to either of these questions then remote working might not be for you.
Routine is Essential
Creating a morning and evening routine is essential to have the perfect work-life balance. Have a dedicated time of the where your focus is on work, but build in exercise, sleep, and activities that you enjoy outside of work.
When working remotely you can often find yourself forgetting to take breaks and this results in burn-out and this can lead to performance issues. Think about when you are the most productive during the day and if you can, base your work schedule around this period.
Building a routine into our lives does not come easy especially if you are disorganised or badly manage your time.
Remote work suits introverts
Remote work can be a lonely existence sometimes, so it is important that you like your own company and are happy to spend time alone. That said, it’s important that you take time out to engage with family and friends, or, go to a coffee shop and strike up a conversation with other people working in there.
If you an extrovert and are the type of person that likes to be around people, then remote working in co-working spaces might suit you better since you will be able to engage with people who are working close to you, or, at networking events.
If you are the type of person that gets easily distracted while working then remote working might not be for you, but, if you can remove the distractions and focus on being productive then you stand a chance.
While working from home you will have many distractions, from your TV, a gaming console, the internet, and especially websites like Netflix, Reddit and social networks, which can suck up a lot of time without you even realising.
Look at creating a working routine that will keep you focused. One that is particularly popular is the Pomodoro Technique. Identify a piece of work, set a timer for 25 minutes and when the time is up, take a one minute break. Then repeat. Once you’ve done this 4 times, take a 25-minute break. There are different versions of the technique but the above works for me.
Having good communication skills is even more important as a remote worker, and you have to become comfortable with tools like Slack, and communicating through video and audio, which come with their own challenges. It’s important that you communicate with your clients or employer and keep them informed of milestones while working on projects or specific tasks.
Willing to learn new skills
To make yourself employable it’s a good idea to be multi-skilled. You have a higher chance of securing remote jobs if you have skills that the company can call upon when needed. As a freelancer, you have options – if work for your main skill dries up, then you have other skills that you can sell to potential clients.
Take time out of your work schedule, each week and learn a new skill. Sign up to an online course on sites like Skillshare or Udemy. Watch tutorials on YouTube, read articles and keep informed of changes within your niche.
You can change and improve
If while reading this article you are thinking, remote working is not for me because of the traits required; don’t let that be an excuse for you to not become a remote worker. You can change. Prior to quitting my job to work remotely, my routine was non-existent, but with time, that has changed. Start to make changes in your everyday life by creating a daily routine, spend some time working in coffee shops, and attending networking events.