Do you have a strong remote working mindset?
Even before COVID 19, remote working has been increasing in popularity. More companies than ever before are allowing employees to work remotely. We’ve seen an 159% increase in remote work between 2005 and 2017 according to a recent report.
Before the pandemic, it is thought that in the U.S alone over 4.3 million people worked remotely. This makes up around 3.2% of the entire workforce. These figures have now escalated, with many companies putting in place more permanent measures for workers to continue remote working.
It’s important to remember that going remote is considered a very different work environment compared to the traditional office setting. Whilst some people thrive, others will struggle if they haven’t adopted a proactive mindset.
Think of it this way: you won’t have a manager sitting nearby or those regular in-person meetings. Remaining self-disciplined and motivated to stay on track and meet deadlines is therefore essential.
It is more important than ever to have a strong remote working mindset.
The good news? Whether you’re new to remote working or finding yourself disconnected, developing a successful mindset is something you can work towards. Most people possess the skills needed, they may just need to adapt them to work productively.
We take a look at the top remote working mindset traits you should adopt to be successful:
Setup a dedicated work space that enables you to focus.
First things first – let’s focus on your environment.
Get dressed! It sounds simple, but staying in your pyjamas blurs the line between work and home life and means your mind will stay in ‘home’ mode.
To switch to ‘work’ mode, you need to differentiate between what you would usually wear in leisure time, or where you would usually be. Surround yourself in an environment specifically geared towards remote work. COVID aside, many remote workers consider coworking spaces for this purpose, as they are both fully equipped and designed to promote productivity and build professional communities.
If you would prefer, or need too, stay at home, try to pick a spot that will complement productivity. This means plenty of space, a desk setup, comfortable chair and natural light. It is also important to have a door! This helps eliminate unwanted noise or disruptions, and supports any remote communication with colleagues or team members.
Are you equipped with the right remote working tools?
We could dedicate a whole blog to the best remote working tools out there (and probably will!) But utilising certain tools definitely promotes productivity and enables you to achieve the right mindset.
Take Trello for example. A project management system which features deadline reminders, to-do prompting and cards which you can organise into lists. These cards can be tasks, notes, projects, shared files etc., but allow remote workers to keep on track, focus on the task at hand and organise projects in a structured, cohesive way.
Organisation and time management are essential skills needed to be a successful remote worker, so the sooner you get into the remote working mindset of managing your workload effectively, the better!
Communication is key
Another remote working mindset that the most effective remote workers adopt?
Always communicating. Again remote working tools can help with this. Whether you use video messaging platforms like Jitsi Meet for weekly catch ups or adopt one of the several team platforms, staying up-to-date is key.
Being proactive and speaking regularly to colleagues or team members benefits all. Regular contact also builds that professional relationship you would have otherwise had in an office environment, fosters loyalty and makes both you and your team more committed.
Humans are, after all, social beings. Unsurprisingly one of the biggest complaints about remote working is feeling isolated or lonely. Yet, if you make communication an integral part of your remote working mindset, you are able to combat these feelings.
All too often remote workers struggle to ask for help when they need it. This is something that also shouldn’t be overlooked. Expressing you are unclear on a project or asking a team member to clarify helps control feelings of stress or anxiety, and has positive repercussions on your overall mindset.
Find that ‘work and personal life’ sweet spot
To truly cultivate a healthy remote working mindset, it’s essential to strike a balance between your work and personal life.
This requires self-discipline. Practice stepping away and switching off, the same way you would when leaving a physical office. This includes having a routine which focuses on your own mental wellbeing.
So make sure you find time to prioritise your health- eat healthy, exercise regularly and get enough sleep, just as you would strive to do in a more traditional working environment.
If you aren’t planning to take a fixed one hour lunch break, take 20-30 minutes out of the day to walk, run or hit the gym. Exercise is great for body and mind, but also releases endorphins that trigger positive feelings. These help control stress, manage pain and in turn will keep you focused on your work.
One of the positives of remote working is flexibility, yet those who are most successful have an adaptable daily schedule they stick too. This is especially key if you have a family, as factoring in commitments can be extra tricky.
By scheduling in meals, exercise, regular breaks and family time you are in better control of your day. Plus, signing off at the end of the day will help with self-discipline!
Set yourself realistic goals
A positive mindset is more achievable when you set yourself realistic goals. This involves establishing what work has to be done each day/week, and prioritising tasks accordingly.
Likewise, without a shared work vision and clear objectives remote teams can easily crumble. If you do work alongside a number of other remote workers, ensure you are aware of your collective goals. Likewise as the owner of a remote company it is your responsibility to ensure you communicate your goals and visions regularly and openly to the rest of the team.
Master these tips and you are well on your way to understanding how the most successful remote workers work. Not only in how they structure their day, but also how they modify their skills to shine when working remotely
Do you work remotely? What are your tips for cultivating a healthy mindset? We would love to hear from you!