5 Steps to Effectively Telework from Anywhere

Wed, 2013-07-17 17:04 -- nitrous

It comes as no surprise that working remotely can improve your productivity and work-life balance while simultaneously reducing costs for your employer. For many, remote working allows for a less frantic lifestyle, and while it’s common to assume that the home office is where telecommuting employees will choose to work, that’s not necessarily the case.

Coffices, coffee shops that have been turned into makeshift offices, are rapidly becoming the destination of choice for teleworking professionals from all sectors, public and private. Not only do these locations provide a change of scenery from the home office, but advantages can also include proximity to work or home, a wider selection of locations and an environment conducive to productivity.

For teleworkers who have yet to take advantage of these possible workspaces but want to, here are five steps to set-up any destination for a successful workday:

  1. The night before heading to a new teleworking location, be sure to charge all required electronics. Additionally, pack everything (laptop, power cord, peripherals, files, paper/pens, etc.) for the “just in case” scenarios. This ensures that leaving for your new teleworking locations mirrors the process of leaving for the office – with your bag ready to go.
  2. Choose a destination based upon your needs, such as an accessible location with strong WiFi and great food and beverage options for the time you will be spending there.
  3. Always look for a seat that is close to a power outlet. To avoid possible “power struggles,” look at investing in a portable power bar or extension cord.
  4. When in doubt, avoid working on information that is confidential. Assume that when in any public location nothing is completely private and secure – especially public WiFi networks. You may want to think about purchasing a fast 3G or 4G data connector for your devices to eliminate reliance on open and public networks.
  5. Consider the use of an external hard drive with key files. This will not only ensure that you are safeguarding sensitive information, but if the network connection slows down you will still be able to use offline access as well.

When working remotely, it is important to be as available to your colleagues and managers as you would be when working in the office. You should plan on calling into all relevant meetings remotely, and when possible use video conference, to maintain good team relations. As long as you consciously make use of all tools and equipment available to you, there is no reason why your team communications should suffer.