Working Styles: The Impact of Remote Working

How do you prefer to work? On-site, hybrid or fully remote? 

I have what can be considered an out of date working style. I like being in the office 4 days a week, I choose to be in the office everyday as shockingly, I like being around people and I like the team of people I work with. On top of that, it works for my schedule. I drop my children off at nursery every morning which is closer to the office than home. I appreciate this is my choice and I know many of my colleague like to work hybrid, as this affords them the chance to see family more often, flexibility to do the school run or go to the gym and to have 10 minutes extra in bed! 

What are the potential issues with working fully remote? Promotions and recognition? Over/under working? Distractions or losing company benefits? For me the biggest concern I have is with the younger generation.

I think back to my in my early career within an office, I listened to all the experienced Account Managers when they took calls. I listened to how they overcame technical issues, dealt with difficult customers, negotiated prices and the different ways to close deals. I had training but I used to take the best bits from all the Account Managers and try to find my style and what worked for me. My concern for the juniors is they are not afforded the chance to absorb this knowledge when they are shut away. Even if they are in the office, most seniors are trusted to work from home so that avenue is closed off to them. So, the question is how are they progressing? 

I see both sides of the argument, you have worked in an office throughout your career, you know what you’re doing, you’re damn good at it and you want the ability to work remotely. However, if you think back to when you started out, what did you gain by being around these mentors, these fountains of knowledge? I suspect the answer is “a lot”. 

When children worked remotely from school, with classes being conducted via Zoom parents felt the learning drastically went down. Parents and teachers wanted schools to return as soon as possible, children need to be around their peers and be in front of their teachers. I feel this is a great example to use for our younger work force generation. 

I know it’s an unpopular choice but as a mother, I can’t help feeling empathy towards the bright, eager generation out there that are being unconsciously restricted and neglected by todays popular working style. 

Another big issue is lack of promotions and recognition. There is research to suggest that remote workers are working longer hours, performing better, but 50% less likely to get promoted as the get less face time and go “under the radar”. Remote workers may face these challenges in getting promoted and recognised, but it ultimately depends on the company culture and policies.

One of the challenges remote workers may face is the perception that they are less committed or engaged with their work compared to those who work in the office. This can lead to a bias against remote workers when it comes to promotions or recognition. Additionally, remote workers may have less visibility to their managers and colleagues, which can make it harder to build relationships and showcase their contributions.

However, with the rise of remote work, many companies are developing policies and practices to ensure that remote workers are not disadvantaged. This can include regular check-ins with managers, clear expectations for communication and collaboration, and recognition programs that include remote workers. Some companies are also making a conscious effort to shift their culture towards valuing results and productivity over face time in the office.

Ultimately, whether remote workers are less likely to get promoted and recognised depends on the specific company and its culture. Companies that prioritise inclusivity and recognise the value of remote work can create opportunities for remote workers to succeed and advance in their careers.

I see the pros and cons from both sides, which is why I think hybrid is the best option. It gives people the chance to be seen, be heard and for the juniors to exposed to all your knowledge and guidance. I know all remote workers will wholly disagree with me!

The reality is, if the company has a good culture and manages the remote working well, then you should be able to choose what works best for you. Are you distracted at home or more productive?

I’d love to know what your thoughts are, especially how do you teach juniors and if they are learning at the same level they were prior to remote working?

Posted by: Melanie Davidson