The death of remote work is bullshit should be the full title of this article.
Remote work dying? No way. Distributed companies are the future (at least in the tech ecosystem)? Absolutely.
I’ve been seeing a lot of tweets and blogs and rants and rambles about the death of remote work.
Tech companies are forcing folks back into the office. VC’s have been telling inner circles that the end of remote startups is here and it was only a fad due to covid.
That’s complete and utter nonsense.
If you are a tech company and remote work (NOT WFH – that’s a bad title we need to bail on), that’s on the management. People aren’t used to having to manage in new ways that don’t involve seeing a butt in a seat and watching over someone’s shoulder.
Remote work is not playtime. In fact, it’s a quality of life and a quality of work enhancer. I can’t begin to describe how much more productive I am at home rather than wasting hours away at an office I couldn’t escape.
Are you a manager that’s not getting the most out of your remote team? Here are a few suggestions.
1. Have your team members start sending out End of Day (EOD) reports every evening at 4:30p. Make sure these reports are public for the entire team to see and comment on. This ensures public accountability.
Take this up a notch by adding an End of Week (EOW) report to give your highlight reel for what was accomplished over the week.
2. Have the entire company get together 1x per year, and maybe the management team 1x per quarter. That’s enough to build humanity, form connections, and strengthen the team bond. You’ll realize how powerful after a few sessions.
3. Have a written-first / as asynchronous as possible culture. Don’t try and replicate an office by wasting time with meetings. Send video messages, audio messages, bullet point lists. Anything but add another meeting to the world. Get your remote teams into deep work time, not distraction time.
Trust me, I know it sounds insane. I actually fought it for a while too – I’m big on just saying what’s in my mind. To curb this, I started making videos of my explanation and sending the team for them to watch and respond on their own time. Obviously, that doesn’t mean get back to me a week later in life, but that does mean get back to me today, I’m just not going to interrupt the team’s exact moment in time.
4. Communicate, be direct, and cut cut cut. People’s attention span is crap. So make sure when you write and instruct folks, you cut the fat and get to the point. Obviously, take point 4 with a grain of salt as you have to decide which team members and moments you can be abstract with versus being direct and instructional.
Remote work can work and does. At Inside, we absolutely love it and have no plans to change the policy – and we’ve been going remote for 4 years now.
Don’t hate on distributed work. The future is global and distributed – don’t fight progress or you’ll get left behind.
p/alexmedick · @ajmedick