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How much do you want to be 100% remote?

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#1

May 2018 Question of the Month

As part of my role here at New Relic, I talk to a lot of aspiring Software and DevOps professionals. Frequently, when I ask them to describe their ideal working situation, it involves some sort of work from home scenario. And a fair number want to work remote 100% of the time.

Now, I’ve also managed plenty of remote teams. It has LOTS of special challenges, but I have personally always found that the benefits are worth the extra work. Still, it’s not the norm in many businesses. So I read this DZone article with great interest:

And I realized that I want to chat with you about it! So tell me - Do you work 100% remote? Or want to? Why? And what works or doesn’t work for you?

Do you work remote?

  • I am remote 100% of the time
  • I am remote part-time, on a regular schedule
  • I can work remotely as needed
  • I have to be in the office every. single. day.

0 voters

Would you like to work remote?

  • If someone would let me, I would work remotely 100%
  • Working remote part-time would suit me fine
  • I can’t imagine not being in the office!

0 voters

Tell us why! Share your thoughts and experiences with the community!


#2

It’s not so much that I think I should be able to work remotely 100% of the time, but that I think intelligent, responsible adults should be able to decide where and when they can best do their jobs.

If I need to interact with colleagues to accomplish a task, I can come into the office; if I can accomplish a task more efficiently working independently or outside of normal business hours, I should be able to do so.

Most of my tasks do not require interaction with colleagues; when I do come into the office, I have to find a quiet place to hide, or I have to work after hours in order to complete tasks that require focus. (See: Why work doesn’t happen at work.)


#3

Hello @hross,
Thank you for raising the question in the Explorers Hub!

I doubt you can find the right answer without experiencing a remote lifestyle for yourself first. I remember having a strong belief that I was not fit for working outside the office by myself, but 3 years past and I’m comfortable working full-time from my home and achieving more goals than ever.

Honestly, it was very difficult to start and understand the self-management basics: first, it takes time to set up working space, schedule and flow within the team; second, you won’t be able to succeed without strong motivation to improve your work and product.

Now, you can find the top 100 recommendations how to start and what to expect, but I’d sincerely recommend (especially for managers) to read the REWORK (or REMOTE) by 37signals – these books definitely helped me a lot.

Maybe, what you do not see often, but definitely face working remotely is that even communicating with the team and customers on a daily basis, you still get a feeling of loneliness and want some face to face interactions. Therefore, I’m a strong supporter of company gatherings and team building events, as well as attending professional meetups in your free time.

As for me, I like to have 80% remote time :slight_smile:


#4

Thank so much for sharing those resources and your enthusiasm @vitalikda. And I have to agree - lots of company/team gatherings are a requirement!


#5

Myself and @zackm are 100% remote workers in a corporate culture that values on-premise presence. I started about 4 years ago and Zack about 1 year ago. For a long time, we were told that promotion to senior engineers and managers wasn’t possible because of the cultural implications. We repeatedly, along with our colleague in Boston, achieved and surpassed our goals, delivered on complex projects, empowered other teams to solve problems, and were generally extremely well regarded by many within our organization.

The very best compliment a remote worker can receive from someone who is in the office, but not within the same building, is “Wow, I had no idea you worked remote!”.

One of our fellow co-workers, the aforementioned Bostonian, shared the following article with us. It has definitely been our experience that remote workers out-perform on-prem workers. I feel like it is a combination of the ability to focus, but also because you are hiring for skills and potential to add value, not for geography.

Fortunately, a change in senior management has now opened up the opportunity to advance to the role of a senior engineer and/or manager and still be mostly remote. It might mean a few more trips to the corporate office per year (we try to get together at least once per quarter, but it is usually 2-3 times per year in reality), but at least the opportunity is there.