If you are a woman who is looking for a career change, you may want to consider telecommuting as a way to start a new job. It’s an attractive option because of the freedom and flexibility it offers. But, there are some challenges you should be aware of when considering a career in remote work.
Telecommuting is the perfect arrangement for remote work
Telecommuting has become a common solution for workers who are trying to find better balance between their work and life. A study by American Community Services showed that five million full-time employees work from home at least a couple days a week.
Many telecommuting workers are in knowledge-based fields. These include programmers, accountants, and graphic designers. They might also have a home-based business.
One of the major advantages of telecommuting is that it reduces travel time. This can be a great perk for those who don’t like the morning commute. However, it is important to remember that there are some disadvantages to working from home. For example, it can be easy to get distracted by household chores. You might have roommates who may distract you.
Having a proper workspace is vital for telecommuters. Working on a computer can also lead to distractions. It’s recommended that a telecommuter works in an office environment at least a few hours a day.
In some professions, such as healthcare, retail & food services, and construction, it’s important that an employee be present in the office. But, this is not always the case.
Another problem is that remote workers may be expected to complete certain tasks each day. In order to achieve this, it’s crucial for employers to train their employees how to be efficient when working away from the office.
One of the disadvantages of telecommuting is that it can expose sensitive data on personal devices. Employees should avoid checking work email, messages, and apps when they are at home.
High-performing virtual teams have healthy cultures of trust and teamwork
Virtual teams are teams of employees that work independently, without having the same physical proximity as other employees. This type of team is important for a variety of reasons, including the ability to bring in people from various cultural backgrounds.
The key to a successful virtual team is the use of good communication. Communication is especially vital in a virtual environment where digital channels can easily be lost. Lack of communication can lead to misunderstandings and confusion.
A healthy virtual team has members who share a common set of values and objectives. They understand each other and work well with minimal supervision.
Successful virtual teams are able to leverage the tools and technology available to them. A server-based project management tool with data capture and reporting capabilities is ideal. It also should allow for streamlined reporting.
In a recent study, BCG and WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management found that high-performing virtual teams were more efficient than their in-office counterparts. In addition, they had higher levels of trust and self-discipline.
Leaders can boost productivity by encouraging a healthy culture. To develop a culture of cooperation and trust, leaders must apply a variety of organizational and communication skills. These include establishing clear goals, building trust, and using practical processes to address communication needs.
Healthy teams promote teamwork and conflict management. These teams also have strong communication and emotional intelligence. Identifying these attributes requires time and focus.
Remote work comes with challenges
A remote work environment can present a number of challenges. This is especially true if the team members are not located in the same location. It’s important to have policies in place to cover everything from communication to work schedules.
One of the biggest challenges for remote teams is lack of accountability. This disrupts the daily work routines of team members.
Other challenges include a lack of social contact and a feeling of isolation. These may lead to a lower level of productivity.
Despite these pitfalls, the majority of workers prefer working from home. Those who opt for a remote work environment can be just as productive as those who work in an office.
The ability to work from home can also lead to better work/life balance. But if you’re a remote worker, make sure you have a support system. That can include your partner, family, or even friends.
For new remote workers, it’s not uncommon for them to encounter unexpected barriers to doing their jobs. Such as not being able to easily ask questions or get clients into the office.
A company’s culture is also important. Employees want to feel like they are a part of the company’s family. To build that sense of community, organize regular meetings.
As a manager, you should be aware of the many ways to motivate your team. From team games to virtual competition, there are numerous ways to do so.
It’s a skill that can be learned like any other
If you are considering a remote job, there are many skills you will need to learn to be successful. Some are obvious, while others are more complicated. Here are a few:
Time management. The ability to schedule and manage your work schedule is essential to being a successful remote worker. Fortunately, it is a skill that can be taught.
Communication. When working with someone on a remote team, effective communication is vital. In addition to face-to-face interaction, communication can take the form of email or chat. To succeed in this role, you’ll need to learn how to create effective online meetings.
Deep Work. This is a fancy term for the ability to complete a cognitively challenging task without distraction. It’s an essential skill for any career. However, most people have lost the ability to do it.
Cross-cultural literacy. Successful remote workers must understand and communicate effectively with people from different cultural and linguistic backgrounds. As a result, it’s crucial to learn how to communicate in the virtual world.
Digital literacy. A basic understanding of computers and platforms will help you pick up new technologies more quickly. For example, you will need to know how to create spreadsheets, format documents, and insert images.
Motivation. Self-motivation is a major requirement for successful remote workers. While this is a tough one to master, it’s a key skill for a successful job. Adaptability is also an important factor.
It’s a choice for women
Whether working for a company or a nonprofit, women are increasingly choosing remote work. This can be a good thing, but it also presents some challenges. Among other things, women may not get promotions or salary increases if they don’t work in a traditional office. They may be treated as second-class workers by their managers, which could also impact their earning power.
There are also issues of visibility for women who work from home. Some people worry that they will fall out of sight, while others fear that they’ll be seen as less engaged. Regardless of the situation, many believe that the benefits outweigh the disadvantages of being a remote worker.
Although there are advantages, a lot of women still feel pressure to work in a conventional office. Women also have a hard time juggling child care, housekeeping, and other domestic responsibilities.
In addition, the workplace can be intimidating for women in the LGBT community. Even women of color have to deal with gender biases in the workplace.
However, it’s worth noting that most organizations have a commitment to promoting diversity, and employees often have the option to work remotely. Remote work has been found to increase job satisfaction and motivation. It’s also a great way to avoid microaggressions, especially for women of color.
If women are unable to continue working remotely, they’ll probably look for a new job. That’s not the case for men, however. According to a FlexJobs survey, a whopping 67% of men said that they preferred remote work.