So there you are, with your manager on a 5 hour time difference, unaccustomed to your new team, with more questions than you know what to do with. Most remote companies recognize the importance of beefy internal documentation to help their new employees learn the ropes. Check your intranet, internal wiki, or internal support docs, or ask your manager where you can access this documentation. Then get busy reading! Read beyond the basics HR policies, for example and browse for documentation that gives you insight into the company's inner workings—customer research, for example, or the marketing team's goals for the year.
Search your team chat app, even, for topics of interest to see how they were handled in the past. If nothing else, this knowledge will help you feel more connected to the company. And if you can't find the answers in your documentation…. So ask them to reminisce—while you take copious notes.
But before you decide to just give up and adopt a bunch of furry coworkers from your local shelter, try these tactics for building relationships with your remote team:. One of the hardest parts of remote work is the disconnect from your manager or your team, if you are the manager. Save yourself a lot of trouble by establishing communication expectations early on.
Find out what hours can you expect your manager and teammates to be available. Know what kind of turnaround time to expect, if you regularly need review or approval for your work. Set up regular weekly or bi-weekly meetings to touch base. At these meetings, take a little extra time to catch up with your team, since you may not get to interact with them regularly. Maybe swap stories about your weekends before getting down to business.
Flexible Survival - Night Zero
Adding a personal touch to your meetings will help you form a better connection with your manager and team mates, even over long distances. One thing we do at Zapier to keep coworkers in touch and make everyone feel more connected is to run randomly-assigned "pair buddy calls. In addition to being a great way to get to know coworkers you otherwise might not interact with, these calls help us to share knowledge and gain awareness across teams.
Pair buddies help with this. Having the system allows us to have those casual chats and learn more about our coworkers. Set yourself a reminder to reach out to a new coworker every week. Whether you strike up a chat conversation or set up a meeting, you and your coworker will both appreciate the effort to build a connection.
You push yourself just a little longer, a little later… just this once…. In fact, remote workers tend to overwork, not underwork.
To avoid overworking and burning yourself out, adopt the mentality that Popforms founder Kate Stull gained through painful trial and error :. There is always more to do, and when you work remotely, there is no one to tell you to go home or that the office is closing, so it has to be YOU who decides when to stop. You have to decide that the rest of your life is worth making space for, and not let work take over that time.
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On Monday mornings , define the most important priorities for your week. Every morning, define the priorities for your day. So set boundaries.
If your team is global, there will be people working all the time. They'll send you messages when you're "out of office" for the night. Resist the temptation to be available to them—set up a Do Not Disturb or nighttime mode on your phone and in apps like Slack. I can wait. When are you the most productive?
When are you the least productive? You might not know the answers, but you should find out. Experiment with your days.
Making the right choices - RPLOG - Flexible Survival
Test different routines and a few different sets of working hours. Take notes on productivity, efficiency, and happiness so that you can "test" which schedules work best for you. Maybe you do your best work in the early morning after a brisk exercise regiment.
Maybe some days you'll have to take a late night or early morning to meet with a teammate across the world. It's okay to set different schedules for different days of the week! Just make sure to keep your team up to date on your availability. To get you started, read up on the experiences of one remote worker and her productivity experiments: Experiments with Time: How to Take Back Your Day from the Grip of Procrastination.
But even while you're experimenting, you need to strictly enforce the schedule you set—even if you change it tomorrow.
Flexible Survival - eBook
Work the hours you set for yourself, then make a clean break between work and home. Try setting up a consistent appointment at the end of your day—even something as basic as making dinner or going for a run—to help you make a clean break between work life and home life. I confirm from personal experience: this will really help you close out your work day. And when your day ends, make sure it ends. Sign out of Slack and email. Close down your computer. I love wearing my PJs as much as the next person okay, possibly more—PJs are my default state of dress unless I'm working at Starbucks or on a conference call.
But there comes a point at which comfy goes too far. Taking care of your appearance is a sign of respect to yourself. It will make you feel more respected and more professional. Shower regularly. Pretend you have somewhere to be, and put in the effort to look good for it—even if that somewhere is only your local coffee shop. So find clothes that make you comfortable by all means, but also find clothes that signal to you that you're on the job and that you're doing something worth getting dressed for and not just counting the hours until you're asleep again.
If you've ever eaten bacon, popcorn, peanut butter, and a bowl of Froot Loops over the course of an hour and called it "lunch," you might be a remote worker. If walking to the mailbox constitutes exercise, you might be a remote worker. If you've ever gone the better part of the week without setting foot outside, you might be a remote worker.
The good news is that, since you work from home, you have more control over your environment. But you choose what you buy at the grocery store. With exercise as well, you no longer have the excuse of "having no time to exercise before work" and "being too tired when I get home. Or hey—why not get a gym membership and exercise your social skills while you exercise your muscles? A poor diet and a lack of exercise can severely impact your productivity, making you more tired throughout the day, more irritable, and more subject to brain fog and stress.
Do yourself and your career a favor: take care of your body. Faced with your own impending hermit-hood, you have a choice. Either you order from Amazon Prime every couple days just to chat up your local delivery guy, or you can try this:. Wait a second, you might be thinking. ScaleValue of Blue Speaker is 3. Cock Length of Blue Speaker is 8. Ball Size of Blue Speaker is 2. Ball Count of Blue Speaker is 2.
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