When I started at Isos, I accepted a position becoming the only remote employee on the Atlassian team. While weighing the pros and cons of being remote I did a lot of online research. I found the standard recommendations of defining a workspace, setting work hours, etc. There are a few things I've learned since:
You have to work a little harder to establish a relationship with your coworkers. Our team has a daily standup where we all sync up on what we have been doing, what we plan to do next and any issues we have. I tend to hop on the conference call as soon as my calendar invite pops up. Almost always at least one of my coworkers is also on early and we chat and joke. This may seem like a small amount of time, but every little bit counts.
Make the most of your time when in person. Whenever I am in the same city as some or all of my coworkers, I take every opportunity to hang out with them. For example, last time I was at Isos HQ I spent an evening watching a flag football game coached by two of my coworkers. At Atlassian Summit this year, I realized that I was meeting one coworker for the first time in person. This was a weird experience since we'd talked almost every weekday since he started with Isos.
The Culture of the Company makes a big difference. When I was interviewing with Isos, I asked our CEO what he thought would be the biggest challenge working remotely. His response was "We do a lot to cultivate our culture, and I don't want you to feel excluded from that." The acknowledgement of that up front told me a lot about Isos and I haven't been disappointed. For the 10th anniversary of Isos I was not in town for the bar crawl, but I wasn't forgotten. FedEx showed up at my door with my would-be drinks from the evening.
The key for being remote to me is remembering that little things go a long way. And of course having a company with a culture of inclusion even when you're far away.
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