Do you have the skills to work remotely?
After the forced transition to telecommuting that 2020 has left us with, many organizations have seen in this work modality an opportunity to build more qualified teams thanks to the opening to the digital talent market in which there are no borders to find the right candidate. However, not everyone is ready to work remotely. If you are looking for a job in a company with distributed teams, read on, here are the soft skills you need to enhance to adapt to the remote work environment.
1. Proactivity and empathy When the office is no longer a common physical space, we don’t see our colleagues. We suffer from virtual blindness. We lack very valuable sensory information to establish the emotional thermometer of the team and, usually, what we have, is in the form of slack status (🗓 ️ in a meeting, 🤒 absent due to illness, 🏡 working from home… ). Faced with this lack of information, we have to learn to communicate proactively with our peers and managers and ask for help if we need it. Remember, if you don’t tell, no one knows. And, as a team, we need to actively create shared moments with our peers to build trust, share common achievements and enhance group unity.
2. Autonomy and decision making You know how to work independently, you need little or no supervision to move forward with your objectives, you are decisive and you are not afraid to make decisions. If you work like this, you’re halfway to joining a distributed team. When you are part of a remote team, your colleagues will be spread across different countries and time zones, making it difficult to reach them at a moment’s notice. Don’t let the lack of speedy response become a bottleneck. Go ahead as far as you can and notify your colleagues so that the next morning you have the information you were missing, and complete your tasks.
3. Teamwork Remote work is synonymous with collaborative work. It is essential that you know what you bring to the team in order to work smoothly with others. You are all responsible for the success or failure of an initiative. You are all working towards a common goal. That is why it is important that there is transparency in deadlines, processes, dependencies and information associated with the projects of the same team. You are all responsible for the success or failure of an initiative and, on many occasions, your role within the team will be to help your colleagues or facilitate their work to achieve success. Are you able to give up competitiveness and personal recognition at work?
4. Communication Communication is vital when working with a remote team. Communicating clearly and concisely is key to avoid misunderstandings, duplicate efforts and keep the team motivated. Most of the interactions with your team will take place in a company chat (such as slack), video conference (such as zoom), or task and project management tool (such as asana). And, most of them will be written – since you won’t be able to coincide with your coworkers due to the time difference. So you need to be able to communicate clearly what you need and choose the right communication channel for each interaction.
5. Productivity Time Management Are you able to organize your day and your week? do you know how to plan to meet deadlines without being reminded? do you delegate or set limits when you can’t take on any more workload? If you know how to differentiate which tasks are important, which ones can wait, and which ones help the company achieve its goals, you already have the answer. You are able to manage your agenda and set your priorities based on the value they add to the big picture of the business project. You can rearrange your calendar and adapt to day-to-day changes without detriment to your performance. This skill is crucial to take charge of your day in a team where your value is measured in the results you deliver and not in the hours you dedicate to the organization.
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