During my whole ”career” as a remote worker, I’ve come across many situations in which somebody was thinking how a lucky dog I am to work from home. Indeed, I can’t really imagine working in big open spaces with a lot of people around me, nevertheless working from home or remotely is not that fabolous as many people think. First of all – working remotely doesn’t always mean you sit comfortably in your home, as this type of work can be actually performed wherever you have the Internet access. That’s one thing. Another popular myths I would like to debunk are… Here I could actually form an endless list of stereotypes revolving around remote work, so let me just focus on the most common ones.
Remote workers are less productive
At first glance it might seem true, because remote employees don’t have a boss controlling their job and telling them what to do. However, while it may seem to be the other way round, people working remotely have less distractions to fight against. For example, they do not have to contend with the so called ”breakroom effect”. This effect is all the interruptions like coffee break, attending colleague’s birthday at the premises, chit-chats with teammates and so on. Remote workers also don’t need time to refocus after those interruptions.
People working remotely are out of contact
Because someone is not working in the office doesn’t mean they are somewhere on vacation having great time doing nothing. Just like any other onsite employee, the remote worker has set deadlines, needs to report the results of the work to the direct superior and usually is in contact with his boss at least once a day. And just like any other emoployee, the offsite worker also has 8 hours working day.
Remote workers are lonely
Personally I have finacee and we are living quite a happy life I think. But I know there are remote workers being alone. But this is not caused by sitting at home and working there. Not at all. Instead of working at home, you may as well take your laptop and find some other place – just like I mentioned above, the only thing you need is Internet access. So you may work in coffee shop, library, hotel, co-working office or even find a bench in the city centre, sit down there and do your job.
No work-life balance
It’s true that for offsite employee it is harder to keep the work-life balance than for somebody who after 8 hours can just shut down the computer and leave the office. Nevertheless it is still possible and even required to do. Remote workers keep similar schedules to their office colleagues and the same expectations of work-life balance should be placed upon them. It’s quite hard to draw the line between private and business life when your home becomes your main place of existence, but it is critical to keep a daily routine that involves eating, relating, relaxing, etc.
Remote work gives no opportunities to be promoted
It might be mistakenly comprehended that if your boss can’t see you, they don’t know how hard you work. On the contrary, many companies keep track of projects internally and have a close look at what has been accomplished and who did that. That way, you don’t have to worry your good job won’t be noticed. What is more, being free to work from wherever and with whomever around the world, you are increasing your knowledge and advancing your experience. The lessons to be learned and the skills to be gained from working remotely can propel your career to new places that a traditional office setting job simply can’t provide.
Those are the myths I regard as most common and which I was coming across most often when asked what I do in my life. Although the remote working is a fast growing sector, people still haven’t the foggiest idea what it is about, thus the stereotypes. What do you think about most common myths about remote work and what did you come across your ”remote career”?