Tips & Tricks: Teleworking during the summer - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Tips & Tricks: Teleworking during the summer

From open concept office spaces to formal teleworking policies – there is no doubt that the structure of offices is changing and the rate of teleworking is increasing. During these warm summer months, teleworking is especially appealing for parents with children on vacation; those wanting to work from their summer home or anyone who is simply looking to avoid the hot summer commute. Many think that working outside the office is difficult and unproductive, but if done right, teleworking has many benefits for workers and employers. If proven best practices are followed, a flexible work arrangement – like teleworking – can be successful.

Thinking about working remotely this summer? Here are some useful tips to help you achieve an efficient remote working session:

Visibility is key

First off, make yourself visible to other employees by conducting online video meetings using video conferencing technology. If you are not physically present in the office, it is important to ensure that you stay in regular contact with colleagues. Online meetings allow remote employees to receive the benefit of “face-to-face” meetings without being in the same location, which helps teams stay in touch on important projects and plans.

Communicate and collaborate

When not in the office, always focus on collaboration by establishing regular check-ins, either via phone or through virtual brainstorms with a central location to share content. Brainstorms can be held in a number of different ways, including online meetings or virtual collaboration rooms, where all employees can access shared documents from their computers. Collaboration tools allow employees to feel as if they are in the office working side-by-side with co-workers and managers can feel connected with their employees.

Set expectations

When teleworking, whether it’s during the summer months or throughout the year, always be sure to get on the same page with managers and other employees. Provide regular updates on projects so your progress towards the set deadlines are known. By establishing clear expectations on deadlines, meetings and time off, employees can make the most of their teleworking experience.

Stick with a schedule and stay available

Teleworking is not synonymous with having a day off. While working remotely, make your daily working schedule known to your colleagues and managers, and make sure they know how to reach you. While it is important to pick up work-related calls, avoid constant interruptions from friends and family members – let your voice mail pick up private calls.

A major part of teleworking is the trust between the employee and the manager – if you test this trust by not meeting deadlines or taking more time off then agreed upon, then the teleworking policies are at risk.

Manage time properly

Make sure to manage time correctly. Just like in the office, time management is an important aspect of teleworking. While teleworking is meant to give employees flexibility and a better work-life balance, it can be difficult to balance work and free time. Setting personal deadlines will help to ensure you are completing your work, as well as prevent you from working longer hours and have it interfere with your home life.

Take a break

Finally, take regular breaks from your work to recharge, prevent fatigue and keep your body healthy. These breaks can consist of a simple set of stretches (here a few examples from WebMD), taking a walk or even getting up to pour yourself a glass of water.

When establishing a flexible working environment, following best practices and utilizing technology (such as TeamViewer, Google Docs, Yammer), are key to making the arrangement successful and making both employees and employers happy. When best practices are followed, teleworking can be a beneficial and productive way to work and also enjoy the warm summer months.

 


About the author

David Gingell is the Chief Marketing Officer at TeamViewer where he is responsible for the marketing strategy and execution to drive customer preference. Previously, Gingell held senior marketing roles at Adobe, EMC and NetApp. Contact the author.
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