Remote work has been gaining popularity for quite some time now, but in many ways this new approach to working is just beginning. For starters, companies are still figuring out how to implement remote work practices. The demand for remote work is high; 82 percent of Americans surveyed by LinkedIn admitted that they would prefer some sort of remote work arrangement.
That being said, explorations of telecommuting and a mobile workforce are often reserved for businesses looking to understand such policies. It’s equally important that employees understand what remote work means for them, too. While the benefits of working at home are crystal clear, working remotely also requires you to have a solid grasp of your time and open communication lines in order to be beneficial to you, the worker.
What people don’t tell you about remote work
One of the biggest issues when it comes to remote work is that you may find it harder to unplug at the end of the day. The typical 9-5 office setup also means that you can leave your work as soon as you clock out — remote workers don’t have that luxury. This is why it’s a lot easier for remote workers to get burnt out, as the constant need to be online and updated makes it easy to take on more work than necessary.
Business Insider also reports that remote workers unfortunately experience a harder time getting promoted. This is especially true for those working alongside in-house teams, as it’s harder to get face-time with your superiors. One downside to this (and in connection to the point made above) is that remote workers often feel like they need to take on extra work in order to gain the same amount of recognition.
Making remote working work for you
Thankfully, employers are now more aware of the potential drawbacks to remote working: from time-tracking apps to mandatory video calls, technology can help bridge these gaps and ensure all employees are seen and heard. Some companies have even decided to go ahead with full remote teams, thus leveling the playing field when it comes to face-time and the like.
Speaking of resources, alternative workspaces are also a great way for remote workers to foster connections. Remote work grants you the flexibility to work from anywhere (obviously), but working from your bed might not be your best bet. US co-working space provider Industrious is now in most major cities in the country, and highlights the rise of community memberships as one aspect that is really moving remote work forward. These alternative workspaces provide freelancers with the amenities they need while immersing them in a community of like-minded individuals. Indeed, building a community is crucial for any remote worker: one big disadvantage of remote work is that it can easily get lonely, and you should never underestimate the benefits of simply working with other people next to you.
All in all, remote workers need to focus on cultivating a healthy sense of work-life balance in order to be truly successful. This may sound a bit odd at first, but burying yourself in work and staying at your home office can actually make it even harder for you to get a workout in or remember to run your errands. Set strict working hours for yourself every day and remember to go out and do other non-work related things.
Given the importance that work plays in our daily lives, we firmly believe in the importance of having a career that meshes well with the other areas of your life. Remote work is a great way to accomplish this. Being aware of remote work’s drawbacks and actively working to still make some time for yourself ensures that you truly take advantage of this new work trend.
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