The good, the bad and the ugly of remote work – part 1

Every time I tell someone that I work full remote, the first words coming out of their mouth are: “Wow, spending all day in pajamas must be amazing!”, or “I bet you hit snooze in your alarm until your boss calls you for the meeting”.

Truth is I don’t do any of these things (well, maybe sometimes I hit the snooze button for more 30 minutes of sleep!) and remote work has its pros and cons, like everything else in life. There’s always a silver lining about which the most curious will reflect and others will become less jealous!

No commute. One thing that I hate is taking public transportation and feel packed like a sardine for the next hour, who likes it anyway? Each travel takes me about 35 to 40 minutes, time that can be used enjoying my morning coffee without any worries, like losing the bus or delaying!

A fresh meal for lunch. Most of my professional life I’ve been preparing lunch the day before in a Tupperware, so I could take it the next day and heat in in the office microwave. Now I can have a relaxing break to cook and, if all goes well, a nice comfy meal.

Customized working space. For me it’s all about having a comfortable chair and a large table with one or two big 47 inches monitors! It’s not so much about stickers or toys or even the girlfriends’ picture, although you can choose whatever feels more comfortable and specially, productive in your working day.

Freedom of movement. I live far from my parents and now I can travel to see them from time to time without having to take a vacation. My only requirements are having internet connection, a table and a chair to do my work. Or having the freedom to change cities or even countries without having to change jobs.

Balance your life. Some companies have strict policies that don’t combine with our modern and hectic lives; fortunately for me, Polarising gives its employees the flexibility to make their your own schedule and manage time wisely, so there’s also room to take a family member to the doctor’s or pick up your children at school.

Work longer inadvertently.
Since I work remotely, I easily lose track of time. Sometimes I look at the clock and it’s already time for dinner! I love my job so it’s not really that bad, but I often miss some appointment or neglect my hobbies or make excuses not to get exercise (just keep up with me to the next paragraph!)

Getting out of shape. Since I spend most of my time in the same place, I move around lesser and am seated most of the time. My laziness level has increased and a simple staircase or even a walk somewhere are daunting tasks!

Work-only colleagues. Most relationships with my colleagues are all about meetings and discussing projects and work-related matters. There’s no opportunity to hangout for a drink after work or having lunch with someone, and that’s not cool.

Going crazy! Most of my professional experience is working remotely but I can’t spend more than 3 or 4 weeks in a row doing it in the same place! I live in a small apartment and sometimes I feel the urge to go out, even if it’s just for coffee or run an errand in the middle of the day. It takes a lot of self-discipline and focus to spend 16 hours at home.

Not living and breathing Polarising’s culture! I never imagined I would say this but sometimes I feel I’m losing the best of what Polarising has to offer me.  Throughout the year, Polarising promotes parties, talks, happy hours with DJ and barbecue, training events… And I must say I feel sad for not being there!

I told you it wasn’t all blue skies and birds singing and pyjamas when it comes to remote work, so I’ll dedicate an entire section to the ugly parts, just hold your horses to the next article at Polarising’s blog!

However, I think it’s fair to say that remote work is all about trust and communication. You can be home or work at any time, but everyone is relying on you to do your part and not watch netflix during working hours! Cause the least you want is to compromise your job or fail your peers. Every company talks about remote work as being the future, but only a few empower their employees to be happy working this way.

Tiago Simões
Polarising Consultant

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4 thoughts on “The good, the bad and the ugly of remote work – part 1”

  1. Andrea Melo

    Agreed. I think the balance would be working remotely one or two days a week, and the rest at the office.

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