Thursday, July 2

Thoughts on working remotely


DID you know that while many of us have jobs that require commuting to our workplace, there are those who start their workday from the comfort of their homes?

Technological advancements have enabled professionals to work remotely, and with the changing perception of what defines a ‘workplace’, the remote work movement is growing fast around the world as more employers are opting to hire remote workers.

Whether they work for companies that allow remote work or are freelancing, the essence of being remote workers is that as long as they have the necessary apps, a laptop, and a reliable Internet connection, they can work outside a traditional office environment, be it their home, a café, or a co-working space.

Remote work benefits in several ways. Mainly, remote workers have greater control over their work and life because they are able to establish their own working time and schedule activities for family, friends, the community, and themselves.

They also can achieve high productivity as they tend to be more focused on the job when there are no office distractions and they understand the privilege of working outside a permanent workspace.

If they are working with professionals from different parts of the world, remote workers have the opportunity to experience different cultures and perspectives as they collaborate with their international colleagues.

And for those who work best in a co-working space, they can boost their creativity and networking by meeting and socialising with other remote workers from different fields.

However, becoming a remote worker isn’t as easy as it seems and is therefore not for everyone, for it takes immense self-discipline and organisational capabilities to thrive in such a working style.

For one, remote workers need to learn not to procrastinate or get easily distracted, since they are not working within a traditional office structure.

If they don’t allocate breaks for themselves, remote workers could also risk experiencing burnout, which can be detrimental for their health and well-being.

They must also set boundaries between their work and life by notifying their employers as well as their social circle of their work schedule.

These boundaries can inform not only those who are unaware of the remote work concept, but also those who assume that remote workers are available at all times on the basis that they don’t work in a typical office setting.

And when there isn’t a lot of videoconferencing with their colleagues, remote workers must possess effective communication skills, especially via emails, text messages, and phone calls, to avoid misunderstandings.

This is a weekly column by SarawakYES! – an initiative driven by Faradale Media-M Sdn Bhd and supported by Angkatan Zaman Mansang (Azam) Sarawak – to provide advice and stories on the topics of education and careers to support Sarawakians seeking to achieve their dreams. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.