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Overcoming the challenges of working completely remotely

Before joining the Invotra team as a remote worker, I used to do usual office worker stuff… waking up 1.5 hours before the work starts.

I would be running around like a headless chicken, trying to wash my hair and put some sort of make-up on, hectically packing lunches, “enjoying” commuting, waiting for public transport. Sound familiar?

Then 4 years ago I started working remotely. This coincided with me moving to the United Kingdom. From the very beginning, I felt very happy and inspired about the ability to work from the comfort of my home and in any point of the globe. However, I started facing some challenges.

I’d like to share with you my biggest challenges surrounding working remotely and the ways of dealing with them:

1.  The biggest problem was an extreme lack of live communication with people. Let’s face it, working completely remotely isn’t the best option for the person who has just moved to a new country and hasn’t yet made any friends, at times I felt very lonely.

Therefore I used every opportunity to travel to the Invotra Woking head office and eagerly joined any jolly gatherings (sadly I do not do this as often now as I would wish due to my daughter being very little, but I’m hoping the tide will change soon!) I found new friends and hobbies and now the loneliness and lack of human communication doesn’t feel as acute. Our Invotra intranet means I feel in the loop, being able to easily keep up to date with what is going on around the business.

2. Lack of physical activity. This one is also relevant for people who don’t work remotely. But at least there’s often a few hundred steps involved on the way to work and back, and those occasional journeys for cups of tea to the kitchen!

Going out for a walk during the lunchtime helped me to deal with it. Jogging in the morning before the beginning of the workday or swimming in the evenings helped me to stay fit. Nowadays my main fitness instructor is my daughter: our walks are regular now.

3. Missing some company’ and employees’ news – thankfully Invotra has the Message Wall feature, where employees can share short communications such as ‘happy birthday’, ‘congratulations’ and ‘well done’. We also use the Groups feature often to communicate surrounding projects and hobbies. And, of course, company/team meetings over video are essential.

These things help me to feel much more involved in company life. I recommend staying involved in what’s going on within your intranet as much as possible!

Conclusion

No doubt working remotely has a lot of good sides which I really appreciate. Invotra has provided me with fantastic flexibility and it’s great being able to have a wonderful career remotely.

According to statistics, remote working is increasing and by 2020 half of the workforce will work remotely. Any one of them could face the problems described above and I hope my tips will be useful.