9 Mistakes to Avoid When Working Remotely
Remote work is becoming increasingly popular. Companies are increasingly turning to remote working for a variety of reasons, including cost savings, keeping employees happy and increasing productivity. However, not everything can be done remotely. Things like being in the same room or communicating face to face are typically not an option, but there are also some things that should be avoided when working remotely. Remote workers still have to follow all the rules and that includes following proper etiquette.
Working remotely can be great. You get the flexibility to work whenever you want, wherever you want, and with who you want. For some, working from home is a dream job. However, as remote work is becoming more common, it’s important to know you’re not the only one doing it. And, as with any new job, there will be mistakes you make along the way.
Not training employees on how to work remotely
While you may be able to have someone work remotely, it’s not always easy. Remote employees require a clear set of instructions, and sometimes a hands-on approach. Training employees on how to work remotely is important. Otherwise, they could end up spending a lot of time trying to figure out their remote environment.
Not having clear expectations about remote work
Remote work makes it possible for employees to work from any location. While this is great, having clear expectations about remote work is very important. Just because your employees can work remotely doesn’t mean they should. In fact, many studies have shown that remote workers get more done, on average, than employees who work in a traditional office. But it is also important that employees set clear expectations about their work and responsibilities. Otherwise, employees could end up cluing their employers in on how productive they are.
Not having a standard way to monitor remote employees
For companies to succeed, there must be a high level of trust between employees, departments, and business partners. Remote employees are an important part of any team. Remote employees can be anywhere, but they need to be supervised to make sure their work is completed on time and correctly. Keeping track of remote employees can be challenging, but it can be done. Employees should use software, communication platforms like Skype, and other tools to keep each other informed.
Not having clear communication
Executives must be able to clearly communicate with employees who work remotely, and this is especially important when an employee is in another country. Clear communication can be increased if the executives speak the same language as the remote worker. Additionally, regular check-ins are important. During those check-ins, the executives can ensure that expectations are being met and that employees are on track. Clear communication increases productivity and allows remote employees to rely on one another.
Not taking regular breaks.
It’s important to take regular breaks while working remotely. Work-life balance is important. The human brain needs time to rest, recharge, and refocus in order to perform its best. And that’s particularly true when you’re constantly interacting with other people.
Issues With Differences in Time Zones
When working with a remote team, time zone differences can be a massive issue for productivity. Even if team members work in the same country, they often have to work at different times, so communication and collaboration can be sparse. Furthermore, you are likely to deal with people who all have their very different schedules. For example, you may work 9 to 5, and you have a remote team that is only able to work at night or at weekends. This can cause major issues for when you are able to work together. If two or more members of a remote team are in different time zones, they can also face difficulties when it comes to communicating.
Not Enough Communication
Communication is not just essential when you work in an office, but when you’re working remotely as well. Communication is the lifeblood of remote work. The biggest mistake you can make in the remote work movement is assuming that you can communicate as effectively in a remote setting as you can in an office. Sure, email is still king, but these days, it’s hardly the best thing for communicating. What you need is a robust instant messaging platform that performs well across devices and facilitates collaboration.
Don’t Micromanaging Your Remote Team
The power of having a great team with remote members should not be underestimated. But that does not mean micromanaging them is the right thing to do. Your remote team members are the ones who are responsible for building the team and maintaining relationships.
Many CEOs are guilty of micromanaging their team. Do not fall into this trap. When you micromanage, you are spending less time on what really matters, and your team is losing precious time pursuing their own tasks. You, as the leader of the team, should not be too involved in the daily work of your team. The solution to this is delegation.
Have Clear Boundaries
It’s important to have clear boundaries in remote work. If you work from home, or from some other remote location, it’s important to establish proper boundaries. This is both to prevent others who work for you from “raiding” your remote workspace, and to prevent you from becoming distracted.