27. August 2019
What is remote work? And what you should know about it in 2019
You may know of remote work in a few different ways, let’s cover them.
- Telecommute or telecommuting
- In the 1990s, this was the term used and brought to the media by way of pop culture. During this time mottos around telecommuting started to emerge as well, for example, “Work is something you do, not something you travel to.”
- Digital nomad
- Someone who works from their computer and re-locates every so often to travel, explore and run their business from literally anywhere in the world.
- Work from home (WFH)
- Still popularly used today as an alternative describing that you’re taking a WFH day or that you have a WFH job.
- Remote work
- The all-encompassing and latest trending term to describe not working from a physical office.
Let’s say all you’ve ever seen are people working from traditional office environments, warehouses, taxi cabs, etc. and this is all you’ve ever experienced as an active member of the workforce. Going from that to then learning about working from home can be extremely jarring. There’s a big misconception that to do great work you have to be physically close to your boss, your co-workers and, even your customers. But as we become more and more distributed through social media and the access of the online resources and tools the more it starts to make sense why and how working remotely is the new norm.
Working remote, working from home is pretty much the same as working from an office. All that changes is now there is a laptop in front of you, you’re working from your home desk, and you talk and meet with your co-workers via virtual tools. As long as you have a decent WiFi connection, headphones and a comfy chair you are set. Oh! And you probably want to make sure you’re a stellar communicator.
63% of US companies now have remote workers, according to a 2018 Upwork Study
Taking up a remote job means that there’s no commute to your companies office, instead it’s a commute from your bed to your desk. Which is 10x better. It also offers freedom for professionals to work at their most productive hours and from any setting they please that allows them to execute their work successfully.
I don’t want anyone to think that remote work is slacking off, that it’s for introverts or people that can’t be socially present, that it’s easy or that anyone can do it. All of these are false. Working remote in my opinion is sometimes harder than working in an office. In an office you’re privileged with water cooler talks, company happy hours, walking to grab coffee with your co-worker, small talk riding the elevator to your office, the in person communication is a given. With remote work, we’re isolated. We have to put in the extra effort and be proactive when it comes to communication and building relationships. Remote work isn’t for everyone.
At the end of the day working from an office or working from home, we’re still getting work done and we’re still delivering outcomes while also keeping our mental health, engagement and, productivity in a healthy state.
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