Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind

 
 
By Deb Perelman  |  Posted 2008-05-27
 
 
 

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind

By Deb Perelman

 

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 1. Be Hyper-present

If you show up to the office each day, it's enough to just be there. You probably don't need to let people know if your lunch will be 60, and not 30, minutes. You don't need to pow-wow with your manager throughout the day to prove you're not slacking. But the rules change when you work from home, which means that you'll have to be extra careful to let your co-workers know what you're up to with brief e-mails, IMs and voice mails throughout the day.

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 1. Be Hyper-present

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 2. Respond Quickly

If you've ever e-mailed remote employees and they didn't respond within an hour, you know that it is almost impossible not to assume they are slacking off. Why else would they not be able to respond? It's not like they're in a meeting in the conference room down the hall. When you work from home, it-

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 2. Respond Quickly

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 3. Be Transparent

Are you going to be out-of-pocket for two hours on Thursday? Rather than giving colleagues the opportunity to call you unresponsive when they try to reach you at times like these, create a schedule that you can share with your group. This way, there will be little question of when you are and are not available. If you need an hour in the middle of each day to, say, pick up your kid from school, this would be the place to let people know--before they schedule a meeting during your blocked-out time. This will also help enforce your work-life balance, so people don't assume you're working long into the evening, just because you may happen to be at home.

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 3. Be Transparent

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 4. Speak Up

Are you feeling out of the loop because you haven't been invited to join a conference call or planning meeting, or haven-

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 4. Speak Up

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 5. Show Up

Whether you live a plane ride away from your office's central hub or a subway ride across town, there is nothing more essential to the success of your telecommuting than as much face time with your colleagues as you can muster. A new manager in your group? Seems like a great time to stop in and say hi. Are people tense because of whispers of layoffs? Come on by and remind them that you're in this, too. If your travel requires budgetary approval, take the initiative with your supervisor to get pre-approval for a certain number of visits per month or year. Bonus tip: Let people know before you show up, so you don't come in on a day that half of your group is also out of the office.

Remote Workers: How to Be Out of Sight but Not Out of Mind - 5. Show Up

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