Remote Summary


#1

Originally published at: https://blog.12min.com/remote-summary/

Office Not Required


Many companies have already adopted the notion of remote work. Why is remote work the future of the business world? If you decide to embrace it, what steps can you take to maintain a productive distributed staff? Lastly, if you are a remote worker yourself, what can you do to avoid the most common traps, and thrive in your career?

Read our summary of “Remote” and find the answers to all of these questions.

Who Should Read “Remote”? and Why?

Authors Jason Fried and David H. Hansson believe that to get the most out of your staff, you should avoid making them work in offices.

In “Remote” they argue that “remote work” is the future, and that the world will start adopting the notion of home-based employees.

They spell out many advantages of remote work but also present the challenges that remote workers will most probably face when they interrupt their usual “9-to-5” work routine.

We recommend this manual to entrepreneurs, managers, and startups who are curious about the perks of remote work, and to all readers who would like to take on a home-based job.

About Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson

Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson are the founders of the software company 37Signals and are co-authors of The New York Times bestseller “Rework.”

"Remote Summary"

The future of work is here, and it is called “remote work.”

Many companies started adopting this way of work, because of its many advantages.

Remote work appeared mostly as a reaction to the drawbacks people face when working in offices. The contemporary office is the biggest enemy to productivity.

How come?

Well, just think about it. When you work in an office, your workday is fragmented and interrupted by calls, meetings, and questions that you need to answer to your coworkers.

In fact, the uninterrupted time you have for getting into your “productivity zone” is almost nonexistent.

As a remote worker, on the other hand, you can give yourself all the uninterrupted time you need. Also, you can work whenever you think that suits your rhythm. You can choose the environment you feel the most comfortable in as well – be it your home, a coffee shop or a library.

You always wanted to move somewhere, but maintain a job?

No problem.

Are you a night owl and function better at night?

That is fine!

Remote work can help you improve the quality of your life. Just think of all the time you will be able to save when you stop making the daily commute, which you will then be able to spend with your loved ones.

Better yet, workers are not the only ones who benefit.

When you employ remote workers, you save on facilities and rent. You also can tap the global pool of talent, and hence have a wider choice of extraordinarily skilled people. Fewer people will quit because of reasons unrelated to their actual job.

Looking at it from each side, remote work sure seems like a win-win.

Not convinced yet?

Read on!

Key Lessons from “Remote”

1. Conventional Objections 2. Hiring Remote Workers 3. Living as a Remote Worker

Conventional Objections

You may be surprised why, if there are so many advantages to remote work, the practice has not spread globally.

The response lies in the resistance that managers show, which they base on the conventional notions about work. However, these concepts no longer apply.

Below we list some of the most common myths linked with work.

  • Stimulating creativity demands face-to-face
  • Being together enhances
  • People will slack off if managers are not watching them
  • It is not fair to let only some employees work remotely
  • It will be less secure

Hiring Remote Workers

When you decide to hire remote workers, there are no limits to the amount of talent you can access. The world is yours.

Another advantage is that you can gain insight into foreign markets, since foreign workers may give you information about their local environments, which you might not have another way of accessing.

You can even use your international staff as a selling point.

Next, we give you a simple set of guidelines that you should follow to make sure that you choose the best remote workers for your business:

  • Don’t ignore “personality.”
The fact that your staff will not be working in the same physical space does not mean that the human element is no longer relevant.

So, create a team of upbeat and motivated people.

  • Avoid gimmicks
Instead of making your candidates solve logic problems or puzzles to evaluate their skills, look at examples of their past work.
  • Find good writers
When you work remotely, most communication takes place via chat, email and other forms of writing. So, make sure that the people you hire possess excellent writing skills.
  • Meet candidates face-to-face
You can best assess your candidates if you meet them in person. Seeing your future worker in person will allow you to evaluate his or her character better and understand how they feet in your corporate culture.

Living as a Remote Worker

Not following the standard, traditional 9-to-5 work routine can undermine your both your work habits and your life.

Make sure you create a proper structure, to avoid mixing your personal and professional life. The dividing line between the two is very thin, and it can be easily blurred if you do not find a way to keep it there.

Sometimes, you will have a project that is going well or ideas that will pop into your head in the wee hours. You will feel tempted. If you are working with people who live in different time zones, the temptation will be even bigger.

Avoid giving in such temptations, since you may find bur soon out.

Many remote workers not only face burning out but also suffer from a feeling of isolation.

If you feel isolated, go among people – find a coffee shop or a public library. The sense of isolation is psychological, so just adding some human noise in your daily routine will help immensely.

Apart from that, use the following recommendations to create a structured workday:

  • Have special work clothes
  • Have an office
  • Divide your workday into sections
  • Use two computers
  • Assess your progress each day
Like this summary? We'd Like to invite you to download our free 12 min app, for more amazing summaries and audiobooks.

“Remote” Quotes

[bctt tweet="In 30 years’ time, as technology moves forward even further, people are going to look back and wonder why offices ever existed." username="get12min"]

[bctt tweet="Millions of workers and thousands of companies have already discovered the joys and benefits of working remotely. " username=“get12min”]

[bctt tweet=“If people want to play video games or surf the web they’re perfectly capable of doing so from their desks at the office.” username=“get12min”]

[bctt tweet=“Meetings and managers are actually the greatest causes of work not getting done at the office.” username=“get12min”]

[bctt tweet=“The office during the day has become the last place people want to be when they want to get work done.” username=“get12min”]

Our Critical Review

“Remote” is an amusing, quick read filled with fun cartoon illustrations and breezy sentences. You will also find entertaining and most importantly – practical advice that you can use to maintain a distributed workforce.