Getting the most from remote working means finding your ideal position, and coming up with a unique strategy to enhance your productivity, wellness, and work/life balance. Rebekah Carter from OfficeGenie.co.uk discusses the various ways in which you can make the most of remote working:
First of all, if you want to make remote working work for you, then you need to find the right spot to make your efforts more effective. This means focusing on everything from having the right equipment and software, to establishing the right environment. As a remote worker, you can find you miss the buzz of an office and the 9-5 set up. If for you this is the case, there are plenty of environments you can access which may be able to help, including:
Co-working hubs and shared offices in which you can bounce ideas off other professionals in your industry
Libraries and cafés have their benefits (peace and quiet and lots of coffee,respectively
These options can help you to feel less isolated in your remote working position. What's more, some will include many of the essential equipment options that you're going to need, including:
Fast broadband: Any remote worker needs a great computer if they're going to be successful. If you're working in coworking hub, check first whether they have a BYOD (bring your own device) policy
Printers, fax machines, and telephones: Though many activities are done digitally today, that doesn't mean that we don't need traditional equipment from time to time, from printing invoices, to making client calls, make sure you're prepared for these aspects when working remotely
Software: Depending on your job, you may need a range of software, from word-processing applications to graphic design options. Make sure you research what you need in advance and purchase the subscriptions necessary to keep churning out exceptional work
How to avoid "out of sight, out of mind"
Remote working may appear an attractive option for freelancers. However, most people who opt for the remote working lifestyle find they struggle to get by without regular interaction with other professionals. A profession away from the traditional company office routine can be very isolating, and you might find that you begin to lose some of your motivation and inspiration when you fail to interact with others.
To avoid this problem, make sure you:
Conduct plenty of virtual meetings with members of your team: Just because you're a remote worker doesn't mean you're alone. Bounce ideas off your team, or simply schedule a weekly skype-call to catch up with them
Establish clear communication channels: Let people know how they can get in contact with you. Some people prefer email, whereas others prefer to talk through their concerns over the phone or on Google Hangouts
Manage your projects: There are plenty of project management applications across the web today that can make it easier to work with a team from a remote location. Tools like Slack and Github ensure you can all work together on the same task - from different parts of the world!
How to remove distractions
Distractions are a serious problem for a lot of remote workers. After all, there's no executive looming over your shoulder to remind you of an impending deadline. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can limit distractions and make the most of your productivity. For instance:
Audit how you spend your workday with apps like Toggl or Track time. This should help you to get an insight into where you're wasting the most professional time
Implement a program for rewards. For instance, according to research, taking a 17-minute break every 52 minutes provides the best productivity results. This break could be a worthwhile reward for almost an hour of hard work.
Use to-do- list apps like Todolist or Wunderlist to ensure you have a consistent and concise schedule
Tips and techniques for making the most of your schedule
A good way to make the most of your schedule as a remote worker is to include rituals that boost your energy levels, for instance:
Focus on one task at a time instead of trying to split your concentration
Know when you need to say "no" to certain tasks, and remember to ask for help
Make time for meditation (or just relaxation!) in between work hours: this can drastically improve your sense of wellbeing and you can utilize your new-found sense of calm
Take pride in your accomplishments. Studies prove that acknowledgement drives performance so, in other words, being pleased with yourself isn't about being vain, it's about investing in your future productivity!
Stay social: networking solutions
Whether you're running a business, or working from a remote location, networking goes a long way towards expanding your future, and ensuring you have the right connections to build success by opening your business up to new opportunities. You can find networking opportunities in a range of locations, such as:
Co-working spaces: Connecting with people in co-working spaces can improve social circle. If you speak to someone, they may mention an upcoming event or course you can get involved with
Social media: LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are all fantastic places to communicate and interact with other people in your industry - you'd be surprised just how many events are announced through these channels
Professional forums: Sign up for forums and websites that are focused on your specific industry, you’ll be sure to get emails about meetups in your area
Remember, while you're at a networking event:
Ask plenty of questions to show your interest, and make notes that you can use in follow-up emails
Arrive on time - no-one likes someone who can't manage their own schedule
Share your passions - show what you can accomplish and convince professionals that you're worth their interest
Be patient and don't hi-jack conversations. Look people in the eye while you talk to them, and listen carefully to their advice
Follow up with calls and emails
Most of all, enjoy your remote working experience
Remote working is a global phenomenon, and its popularity isn't going anywhere any time soon. Around 61% of workers in a global survey by PGI said they'd leave their job for a remote position if they could.
Working remotely can be an amazing experience - but it can also be very intimidating. However, when you understand the factors that go into successfully managing yourself, remote working can be a brilliant way to propel your work and your career.