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Preparing for Emergency Remote Work

Published March 4, 2020  |  Updated May 1, 2020

Quick Access Guide:

Why we’re talking about this
Emergency Remote Overview
Resource: Emergency Remote Checklist
Resource: Unexpected Remote Work Course & Remote Workday Module
Sustainable Remote Roadmap
Resource: Company Remote Readiness Assessment
Still Have Questions?

 

Access the Placeless Playbook for strategies to transition from suddenly remote to sustainably remote

 


Frankly, novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is not a reason we want to be talking about remote work. We've hesitated entering into the now trending conversation, as it's a serious issue that is affecting lives and livelihoods across the globe. However, as we see
companies turning to remote work as a potential solution to help the stem the spread of the infectious disease, we have additional concerns: 

  • At a company level: Only 30% of business leaders feel their organization is well prepared for the rise in remote work.*
  • At a...
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Remote Team Building Activities: Create Trust While Distributed

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes, 28 seconds

 

By Katie D. Scheuer, Curriculum Specialist at Workplaceless 

 

Ice Breakers. Team Builders. Structured Adult Activities.

For some, these words inspire an array of emotions: dread, joy, terror. For me, it’s pure and radiant “this is what life is all about” happiness. Team builders for me are what sports are for others.

It started with theatre games at summer camp (“This is a tick. A what? A tick. Oh, a tick! This is a tock!), and in college I insisted on being “Ice Breaker Chair”, a made-up role for my volunteer organization. I host “Teach Me Something New” parties with my friends. My dreams come true when Charades are played on ski trips and when baby showers have improv games led by zany aunts. 

When I started working remotely, I wasn’t sure how I would handle working by myself after years of leading workshops, teaching, and coaching live on college...

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Tips for Successfully Leading a Virtual Cross-Cultural Team

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes, 52 seconds

 

By Teresa Douglas, an American professional living in Canada. She is the co-author of Working Remotely: Secrets to Success for Employees on Distributed Teams.

We're grateful to Teresa for sharing her expertise. Any opinions expressed within this blog post are those of the author and not necessarily held by Workplaceless itself.


 

I walked out of the meeting with housing services feeling like I wasted my time. This was the second group session I attended as the finance chair for our local neighborhood association. After (what seemed like) a highly productive pre-meeting email discussion, I had expected to leave with a decision and a course of action. 

Instead, we spent the hour covering the same points discussed in our email chain. The only decision we made was to schedule another meeting to discuss this “very important issue.”

I’ve spent more than ten years as a people and operations manager....

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Expert Advice for Solving Hybrid Team Challenges

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes, 27 seconds

 

Buffer and AngelList’s 2020 State of Remote Work reveals that 43% of companies are hybrid, meaning part of the team is full-time remote and part of the team works out of the same office. However, an additional 24% of companies allow individuals to work from home on occasion. That’s a total of 67% of companies who are navigating the complexities of remote vs. in-office dynamics. We wanted to understand in more depth the challenges that these hybrid-remote teams face on a daily basis. 

 

At our Networkplaceless event, we specifically asked attendees, “Does your company have a plan in place to address hybrid team communication gaps?” Thirty percent of respondents said yes, 39% said no, and another 30% said not sure. (Note: if your team members aren’t sure, it’s probably time to revisit your policy and make communication improvements).

 

In order to provide solutions to some of ...

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Things I learned after five years on a hybrid-remote team

 

By Ali Riehle, Freelance Designer and Researcher, working remotely since August 2018.

We're grateful to Ali for sharing her experiences, especially as we've dedicated time in our remote community to discuss challenges and solutions to hybrid team relationships. Any opinions expressed within this blog post are those of the author and not necessarily held by Workplaceless itself.


 

Most recently in my role on the design and development team at LUMA Institute, I worked at the company headquarters for a few years, called in from home occasionally, and worked remotely and nomadically for one year. These experiences have presented me with many challenges and have changed the way I think about collaboration and work in general. 

Being a member of a hybrid-remote team isn’t easy. At times, I’ve felt isolated, left out, or frustrated by the technical problems this setup can create. Aside from all that, I’ve benefited greatly from this...

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Top Challenges of Hybrid-Remote Teams

Remote work is growing—rapidly. Work-from-home roles have grown by 173% since 2005. But that remote work trend means different things for different people, and for different organizational structures. Some teams are 100% remote, but more often we see teams that are a mix, or hybrid of different working models. 

So when we refer to different working models, what do we mean?

 

  • Co-located: A company or team whose employees all work in the same location.
  • Distributed: An company or team whose employees all work remotely (also referred to as “fully distributed” or “remote-first”).
  • Hybrid: A company or team with some employees who are co-located and some who work remotely (also referred to as “remote-friendly” or specifically as “hybrid-remote”).

 

You can reference all of this terminology in our remote work dictionary

 

Within a hybrid team model, there can be variances of experience: if there’s only...

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A Positive Impact on Remote Workers and Remote Companies.

 

“Workplaceless aims to positively impact both the supply and demand of sustainable remote work opportunities.”

 

We believe in the power and potential of remote work, and we’ve been working to define for you how we make remote work work for the long-term. Let’s break down our mission.

The demand of remote work refers to the number of workers seeking remote or flexible job opportunities. People are seeking remote work for a wide variety of professional and personal reasons. 

Entrepreneurs, working parents, freelancers, travelers, digital nomads, people with disabilities or chronic illnesses, students, military spouses, retirees, and anyone who wants better work-life balance might be able to find work where they couldn’t before.

However, when we take a look at remote-first companies, such as Doist, we see that the number of job applications far outpaces the number of roles available at 1,000+ to 1 ratio. The likelihood of getting hired...

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Real World Advice from Change Makers in Remote DE&I

Any opinions expressed within this blog post are those of the author and not necessarily held by Workplaceless itself.

When we decided to dedicate two months of our Networkplaceless events to discussing challenges and solutions to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) in remote work, we knew it would be impossible to tackle everything in that time. We also knew that we needed to tap into diverse perspectives to truly round out the picture and provide tangible advice. With that in mind, in addition to hosting a diversity strategist in December, we reached out to a variety of organizations who are bringing forward opportunities for conversation as well as action. We’re grateful to Power to Fly, LGBTQ+ Workplace, NTI, and Startup Setup for taking the time to share their expertise. 


 

Lauren Hagerty, Senior Manager of Marketing and Community, at Power to Fly, a community and recruiting platform that connects companies to women in tech, sales, marketing and...

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Grounding Principles for Remote DE&I Strategies

“Remote work has a particularly unique opportunity to offer more diversity and have a more robust, diverse population… But it certainly in and of itself will not resolve diversity issues.” 

Jordyne Blaise, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Strategist with remote team experience, shared this sentiment during her guest speaker presentation for our December Networkplaceless event. The topic of discussion was, “Exploring Solutions to DE&I for Remote Teams”—admittedly, a lofty goal to accomplish in a 25 minute presentation. However, Jordyne provided us with a framework to establish solid DE&I strategies and challenged us as individuals to instill new habits with DE&I in mind.

Jordyne shared the following grounding principles. While DE&I strategies are not one-size-fits-all, these basic principles hold true regardless of the type of organization or current status of DE&I commitment and strategy development. 

  1. Achieving...
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Your Guide to Remote Rewards & Recognition

Whether your team is fully or partially distributed, you know that people are your greatest priority. Talent is the true lifeblood of any company, and employee motivation is one of the key tenets of any healthy organizational culture. In a number of global surveys and reports, remote workers themselves have shared what drives them: a sense of purpose, the ability to work independently, and the chance to accomplish more while achieving a better work-life balance.

If this isn't news to you, you've likely given some thought to how you can specifically encourage your team not only to do more but do better—a focal point for managers who care about progress and well-being of their peers in addition to the trajectory of their company and their own careers. However, a roundup of employee recognition statistics reveals a disconnect: workers acknowledge the need for recognition, but leaders are not equipped with the knowledge, access, or decision making power to provide adequate...

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