For many people, working from home is a dream come true—making money without a lengthy commute, having the flexibility to set your own hours, and spending more time with family are big perks. However, remote work comes with its own set of challenges.
Cultivating certain traits will help set you up for success in a remote position. If you’re considering a work-from-home job, fine-tuning these skills will help you stay productive and feel connected while working remotely.
You’ll have plenty of work to do, and you’ll still have deadlines—but unlike a normal office environment, you won’t have anyone else around to help you stay on task. It it’s easy for you to stay focused, however, working remotely will be a breeze.
But even if you sometimes struggle with staying on task, you can still work from home successfully. Things like setting up a designated home office, breaking up your work into short, manageable tasks, and knowing and avoiding easy distractions will help.
One of the challenges from working from home is the need to figure out the solution to a problem without input from a manager or co-workers. As a remote employee, you may need to do your own research online or use your company’s database to figure out a solution. Luckily, this usually isn’t a difficult thing to do. If you’re comfortable finding answers independently, you’ll be a great fit for the work-from-home life.
Working in an office often motivates to keep your desk clean and presentable since others will see it. But at home, it’s easy for clutter to collect in your workspace. Staying organized is vital to successful remote work, so setting aside a few minutes each day to clean and organize your desk will help you succeed.
Most work-from-home jobs require a lot of communication through email. This means you’ll have to be very proactive with your questions and concerns—if you need clarification on an assignment, for example, it’s best to ask for it immediately. You’ll also have to be very clear in your emails so no time is wasted in getting you the information you need.
Since you’ll largely be in charge of your own schedule, it’s very important to have good time management skills. Prioritizing your tasks and having a grasp of how long things will take you to complete will make your work days much easier.
Time management skills aren’t always something we’re born with, so don’t be discouraged if you could use some improvement in this area. Try making a daily schedule and sticking to it, paying more attention to how long things take you to do, and steer clear of social media and other distractions.
Since the majority of your work will be done on your computer, you will need to be at least somewhat computer savvy to be able to work remotely. Make sure you understand the software you’ll use to do your work and keep your computer running smoothly.
But even if you aren’t computer savvy, you can improve your skills quickly. Identify what you need to learn, familiarize yourself with your computer’s functions, and search online for free tutorials or courses.
Comfort with isolation
Even if you’re not a “people person,” sometimes working from home might feel lonely. Online messaging programs are great for keeping coworkers connected; here at Appen, we built a community forum in our platform, Appen Connect, so workers can communicate with each other. Since losing the social connection of a standard job can be tough, make sure to schedule plenty of social activities to avoid feeling isolated. After all, one of the benefits of working from home is having more time to spend with your loved ones.
Self-motivation is the most important trait to possess as a remote worker. Since you’ll be working independently, you’ll probably have a lot of control over your schedule. Staying motivated to do your tasks in a timely manner will set you up for success.
If you possess the majority of these skills, you probably have what it takes to work from home. Since many of these habits are easy to adapt with practice, what matters most is your motivation.
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