Working as a remote employee comes with its fair share of benefits and challenges. The ability to work from anywhere is incredibly enticing, but the lack of direct oversight and facetime with managers and co-workers can create a perceived disconnect. Similarly, the level of flexibility may leave a manager uncertain about how a remote employee is spending their time.
Becoming a great remote employee requires you to set up processes and mechanisms that address any concerns that may plague your manager. Additionally, being effective in the role may necessitate adjusting your usual approach to work. If you want to be a highly productive remote employee, here’s what you need to know.
Create a Routine and Embrace Set Hours
Before you start your remote job, make sure to discuss any time-related expectations with your manager. Find out when you need to be available and what platforms you need to utilize to ensure you are reachable during those times.
Additionally, since your colleagues may assume you are essentially “on call” since you don’t work from a formal office, it is wise to set boundaries that define when you are on and off the clock. This ensures everyone has proper expectations about your availability and won’t become frustrated if a late evening email goes unanswered until morning.
Once your hours are established, stick to them. This allows you to maintain a routine while also ensuring you are available when you said you would be.
Schedule Regular Check-Ins
Since you aren’t in the same office as your manager and co-workers, schedule regular check-ins to discuss your progress and to gather information that may have been shared in the workplace but not immediately passed on to you. If you live in the same city, consider having these meetings in person. If not, then embrace video calls so you can get some facetime and establish a strong connection to the team.
When in Doubt, Overcommunicate
Communication is critical when you work remotely. Not only does it ensure everyone who needs to be apprised of your progress is fully informed, it also keeps you at the forefront of everyone’s mind, even if they don’t see you regularly.
Make sure to communicate with your manager and co-workers on a frequent basis, particularly if you are working on a project together. You can also ask your manager about how often they would like an update, and then follow the schedule they provide, ensuring you meet their expectations without overdoing it.
Planning and Organization are a Must
Often, remote employees have some flexibility when it comes to when they work, provided they can still meet any set deadlines. While this lack of oversight can give you latitude over your schedule, it also means you need to plan and organize your tasks on your own to ensure you meet expectations.
Make sure to structure how you spend your time in advance whenever possible. You can also use a shared calendar to let your manager and co-workers know what is on your plate and when you are handling specific activities. This approach gives them insight into your schedule and provides additional details about your availability for calls and meetings.
Ultimately, by following the tips above, you can become a great remote employee. If you’d like to know more, the team at The Squires Group can help. Contact us to speak with one of our staff members today and see how our remote-work expertise can benefit you.