The ideal coworking space combines the independence of remote working with the structure and community of an office. In fact, many corporate companies now utilize coworking spaces for their remote workers thanks to its cost-effectiveness and atmosphere of creativity and collaboration that businesses find beneficial to productivity.
Despite the rise in popularity of remote working, office workers with a traditional 9-5 corporate background often haven’t had experience with setting their own schedules. Many remote workers are encountering freedom, flexibility and autonomy over their own workload for the first time. The ability to work remotely is a great opportunity but growing into an effective remote worker in a coworking space is a valuable skill to possess in our evolving economy and it helps to be prepared.
Maintain clear communication with the rest of your team
Get clarity around your work expectations, both for yourself and the rest of your team. Being apart from your work team means you may miss out on consistent in-person feedback and those impromptu post-meeting conversations. This is where clear communication skills come into play. Since being away from the team means you won’t be able to pick up on non-verbal cues like tone of voice or facial expression, don’t overanalyze responses over email. Instead, use this rule of thumb: you can never be too specific. Instead of overthinking or making assumptions about the mood or plans of your team, follow up with your supervisor after meetings using a brief, bulleted email to recap your understanding of the main takeaways. Check in periodically with the team to confirm you’re on the same page. Taking the initiative to establish clarity around expectations for you as an individual as well as the shared team responsibilities will avoid miscommunication while reinforcing your supervisor’s trust in you to handle the role.
Work from a space where you can focus
Separating oneself from distraction is perhaps the greatest challenge for a remote employee. Working from home sounds like a dream come true – until you’re getting sidetracked by pets and kids while resisting the urge to tackle household tasks. Coffee shops are a popular remote working spot, but conversational chatter in the background may not be conducive to productivity, and libraries don’t permit necessary business communications like phone calls or Skype meetings. This is the gap your shared workspace aims to fill. When you utilize a coworking space, you can choose the exact type of office you want. Whether you work best in a quiet, private office or from a collaborative shared desk, discovering a place where you can focus and be productive is like striking gold for a remote worker. Feeling motivated by your environment is crucial to maintaining your momentum and getting more done. Plus, you might just make your workday more enjoyable when you find a space where you can do your work well.
Develop a routine but stay flexible
Structure and self-discipline are essential for getting work done, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on one of the best things about being a remote worker: flexibility. Fortunately, it’s possible to develop a routine that works for you while staying flexible and have the best of both worlds. The key to a consistent routine that lasts is to stay organized. Block time in your calendar to allow for breaks as well as prioritize specific work tasks. To boost productivity, consider arranging your schedule based on your optimal working style. For example, whether you’re more efficient in the morning or afternoon, use that knowledge to plan your workflow for the day. Tackle complex work when you feel most alert and complete basic tasks when you’re not as sharp. When life happens and you need to attend a meet-the-teacher event or take a furry friend to the vet, you can rely on the framework you’ve built to adapt your schedule accordingly, so you don’t lose any traction. Taking the time to set up a workday routine that allows for flexibility will pay dividends towards effective remote working.
Know when to turn off
Despite the email notifications you may be fielding at almost any hour, especially if you’re in a different time zone from the rest of your team, be sure to set boundaries. Time away to allow a mental refresh is not only healthy, but productive. Often times, the best work ideas surface after the mind has had a chance to disengage. Set an end-time for work-related tasks, including emails, and stick to it. After that end-time, disable phone notifications for emails or activate the Do Not Disturb setting. Remember, as a remote worker you aren’t always around your team members – enforcing a virtual boundary is your version of saying good night and heading out at the end of the day. Create a habit of responding to messages only during business hours. Don’t give the impression that you’re accessible 24/7 just because you work remotely.
Use your shared workspace to build a community outside work
It comes as no surprise that work-life balance feels much more robust when you can build a community outside of work. From your coworking space, it’s likely you’ve already met several new people in a range of different industries. That’s part of the beauty a coworking space – the ease of networking. Every day you’re around likeminded people with varied, interesting backgrounds who are all, like you, motivated to create in a space of collaboration and productivity to achieve their goals. Take advantage of the member gatherings in the facility where you work and make an effort to speak when you see new faces in the café. Nurturing friendships between people you can connect with outside your shared workspace not only makes the workday more enjoyable but strengthens your social network off the clock.
Venture X and effective remote working
As coworking continues its upward trajectory as the leading alternative to traditional offices, numbers of remote workers for small businesses and large corporations will rise. Remote workers will find their ideal work environment at Venture X, with features like choice of workspace, access to meeting rooms, in-person social networks and more. Contact Venture X today to schedule a tour and become a highly effective remote worker.