8 Characteristics of Successful Remote Employees
Working from home is a large part of the new normal for many people. Regardless of what the future of your work looks like—a blended remote environment, full-time remote, etc.—you’ll want to make sure that you understand the traits of a successful remote employee.
8 Qualities of a Successful Remote Employee
Easily one of the most important characteristics of a successful remote employee, top-notch communication skills are essential to your remote work success. We often tell people to choose over-communication over under-communication when it comes to working remotely.
This means that you keep your boss in the loop on the essential things. Have a bunch of doctor’s appointments coming up that might affect your work hours? Let them know. Falling behind on a project because you’re waiting on approvals? Send out an update.
Intentional communication—that’s clear, well thought out, and includes critical information—is essential for remote work success.
Along those same lines, one of the qualities of a successful remote employee is assertiveness. They know when to ask questions and seek clarification. More importantly, though, they make sure they get their questions answered in a timely fashion through polite (but assertive) follow-up.
Just because you can work in your kitchen or on the couch, that doesn’t mean that you should do that all the time. Instead, try to stay centrally located with a home office so that you can keep your work organized and in one “hub.”
And if you’ve been working at home during the pandemic without a permanent place to work, it might be time to invest in a more permanent home office solution. Consider chatting with your employer about the possibility of expensing home office equipment or getting a stipend.
4. Motivated and Responsible
One of the qualities of a successful remote employee is the ability to get things done without anyone pushing them.
To make working at home work, you’ve got to be responsible and self-motivated. Because there’s no “helicopter supervisor” to make sure you’re in your seat, it’s up to you to make sure you’re staying on task and getting things done.
Though you may not share a physical workspace when you’re working remotely, that doesn’t mean that you work alone. You’re still part of a team and it’s important to work together towards a common goal.
Successful remote employees are collaborative even if the team is in several different time zones. By mastering the art of asynchronous and synchronous communication and using project tracking tools, you and your team get the job done, no matter where everyone is. Furthermore, the best remote workers still build relationships with their teammates the same way they would if they were in an office.
Not only do successful remote employees ask the questions, they figure out where to find the answers. While the answer might lie with a boss or coworker, they also know that there are other helpful resources.
A successful remote employee may find free online tutorials or attend training sessions to help them improve their skills. They might ask their network if they’ve ever faced a similar challenge, and ask how that person solved the problem.
7. Not Afraid to Ask for Help
In a remote setting, your coworkers or boss won’t know that you need help unless you speak up and reach out to them. Not everybody feels comfortable reaching out, but this will ultimately help you perform better and deliver stronger results.
8. Adaptable and Nimble
Being a successful remote employee in any circumstance means being adaptable and nimble.
Sometimes you have to attend a meeting at a weird time for you. Other times, you may not get an answer to your question for 12 hours due to differences in time zones.
Whatever the challenges are, a willingness and ability to adjust to changing circumstances is critical.
Continued Work-From-Home Success
Whether your remote work arrangements are long-term or temporary, mastering these will help you become a better employee.
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