In 2019, remote working was a luxury bestowed on some lucky individuals, with most employers dragging their heels and insisting a physical workplace was a more productive environment, despite the data.
In 2020, working from home is well and truly the new norm which has been a steep learning curve for those who swore they would never bring their business online and test the many tools that have allowed agile businesses to thrive. Whether you are for or against the remote format, the control has been taken out of your hands, so let’s embrace what’s out there and be inspired by how everyone is adapting in 2020.
Video conferencing bridges the gap
Remote working feels less remote when you can see your clients, colleagues and managers. Video conferencing is an incredible tool that you can deploy to build a connection in these circumstances, especially when there are some who aren’t necessarily thriving remotely. Previously this was a complicated tool to master, but now you can achieve video conferencing through Microsoft Teams and a number of other platforms.
There are some teams who are bringing some playfulness to video conferencing, deciding to theme meetings so employees are uniform in their appearance and enjoy a laugh at work. If you haven’t yet embraced video and prefer to call, challenge yourself to a week of video conferences and calls and then reflect on your mindset after that human connection.
More rest, more productivity
With the absence of a commute, remote working allows for quality rest without impeding on working hours. Does anyone else feel incredibly well-rested? We don’t need to spruik the benefits of adequate rest, but remote working also allows for workers to not rush the morning rituals and many are finding joy from the new time spent with their partner.
You should also feel encouraged to exercise during lunch or spend your commute time doing other activities that will enrich your day. If you are now part of a remote team, encourage your colleagues by asking them about how they are spending their additional time, and what some of the unexpected silver linings have been.
Strengthening the autonomy and resilience muscle
Humans get a number of opportunities to flex their resilience muscle, and you could argue that COVID-19 has forced even more growth in this area with individuals having to get comfortable with autonomy very quickly. Autonomy is as important as being a team player because people want to rely on that fact that you can take on a project and excel on your own, rather than having to check-in or depend on a wider network
Use this time to enhance this skillset, no matter how much of a stretch it is, so that you can showcase your success in this area to your existing and future management. There might be some that are floundering in this remote format, so be sure to check in with your team and let them know what tactics have been working for you.
Lower cost on employee and employer
Another benefit to remote working is the potential savings you can see, without buying coffees and lunch, spending on public transport and even the money you save on dry cleaning and workwear. Maybe even that short walk to your train is littered with stores you can’t always resist walking into. Given the circumstances in which remote working has been rolled out, cost savings can only be a saving grace and something you should consider tracking and putting forward those earnings to something else.
Rather than deciding whether remote working is a good or bad change, test the limits and see how you can perform under different working circumstances. Adversity like this has exponential benefits to your mindset, experience and even your wallet. You want to look back on this period and see how well you thrived under the saving grace of remote working.
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