Are you a part of the workforce that is seeking a hybrid or remote position? Well if you have read that remote work is booming, you’d be right. It’s not a new thing, people have been working from home for a long time. But over the past couple of years, many people were forced to work remotely and now, many are choosing to work remotely. If you are seeking the work-life balance that a remote job can offer, I’ve rounded up some tips on jumping into becoming a virtual or remote worker. Let’s get your life started as a virtual or remote worker.
What is a Virtual or Remote Worker?
Working remotely or virtually is a broad term and covers a number of scenarios, like these:
- Someone who works for an organisation that allows an employee to work remotely from home or anywhere;
- A person who has decided to leave their physical job and set themselves up as a freelancer working from a home setup;
- Someone who hasn’t left their job (yet) and is testing the waters with an online side gig;
- A person who has set up an online business and taken it on the road with them. Like a digital nomad, working and travelling abroad in different countries.
How to Get Started as a Virtual or Remote Worker – Define Your Remote Work Goals First
These are the more common virtual or remote worker arrangements you may find yourself in. Before you take the leap, consider what remote work looks like in your mind. Ask yourself the following questions and consider your answers thoughtfully. They will help you plan your new virtual or remote life.
What is it about a Virtual or Remote Job You find Appealing
- Freedom to work when you want and where you want comes to my mind first. However, it isn’t always that simple. Even though you are working remotely you may have deadlines to meet.
- Work from anywhere. This can be by a beach, in a coffee shop, at a mountain retreat or at a kitchen bench. So you will need to decide are you going to be a digital nomad where you travel and work abroad or will you be working from a home base.
- Don’t need to worry about commuting.
- You can sleep later and work in your pyjamas if you like! Sometimes I do!
Do You Have the Skills to be a Virtual or Remote Worker?
There are many jobs you can do as a remote worker so you could be an expert in one or a purveyor of many. Once you know which remote job you want to do, do you have the skills to work remotely. If you are already working for a company and will be working remotely for them you should have most of the skills required to fulfil your agreed working commitment. You may know how to operate a computer, but have you considered less tangible skills. What I mean is, working remotely requires self-discipline and a regular routine to ensure you deliver your work. You will still need to manage your working time effectively and not be easily distracted by family or by your chosen working location, like in a coffee shop where it might be noisy. And don’t forget that things can go wrong with your tech gear. Can you troubleshoot when things go wrong. Yes, the skills required to be a remote worker are much more than knowing how to use a computer and having knowledge of your industry. If you feel you have all the skills required to be a virtual or remote worker you are certainly on your way to starting your online career.
How will you find a Remote Job?
If you are choosing to be a freelancer offering your services then you will need to find a job you can do remotely. And there are literally hundreds of jobs you can do online from data entry, surveys, designing websites, being a VA (Virtual Assistant), blogging, selling t-shirts or bookkeeping to name a few. Once you have decided in the job you will do how do you get clients? Well there are a number of platforms available where you can create a profile to attract clients or approach clients directly. These platforms include:
- We Work Remotely
- Facebook Groups are also a good option
Where Will You Create a Home Office?
People create a home office anywhere. At home, in a dedicated room. Perhaps in a co-working co-living space, a coffee shop, a van or you may be like me and often work in my lounge room or by my pool. The point is, to be successful as a remote worker you need to create a space you can work in effectively. It doesn’t have to be a big space, but the space needs to be big enough that you can have all your necessary equipment around you so you can get your work done. It is essential to have the required office essentials for working from home or on the road so you can get your job done and make money online.
Will You Utilise Different Work Environments?
Not everyone works from a home office. As mentioned before, you could work by a beach, in a coffee shop, in a van, at a co-working space or anywhere you have access to wifi so you can continue working. Having different work environments can help with productivity, but can also prove detrimental if you enjoy where you are too much and not get your work done. As long as you are comfortable and productive I don’t believe it matters where you work.
How Will You Stay Healthy Working Remotely?
You probably haven’t thought about how to stay healthy while working remotely but throw this into the equation. If you aren’t healthy, you won’t be productive and therefore, your working remotely journey may not be as productive as you thought it would be. Firstly, physical health. Set a routine which includes breaks where you get up and move around.
How Will You Cope with the Isolation and Loneliness?
Loneliness and isolation are the biggest things that can affect any virtual or remote worker. Keeping good mental health is a must. This is why many solo remote and virtual workers enjoy working in coffee shops and connecting with other virtual and remote workers. Most importantly, know when to turn off.
How to Set Yourself Up for Success as a Virtual or Remote Worker
Like any business, of which working virtually or remotely is, put a plan together outlining details of your business or type of work.
- Do a Business Plan – That’s right, every business has a business plan outlining the who, what, where, why and how of your business.
- Create a Dedicated Workspace – yep, plus have the right gear
- Establish a Schedule and Stick to it – well mostly, you do need flexibility.
My 8 Remote Working Tips for Beginners
- Write down your plan
- Invest in reliable technology
- Consider your workspace
- Utilise the skills you have
- Figure out your working style and stick to it
- Take time to look after yourself, both physically and mentally
- Know when to log off
- Enjoy the perks of working remotely
Are You Ready to Work Remotely or Virtually?
Becoming a remote or virtual worker isn’t that hard as long as you have a plan. I’d love to hear if you’ve dived into the world of remote work in the comments following.