Rise to the challenge

A recent trend I've noticed on LinkedIn is people posting about the importance of remote working. These posts all contain photos of cosy looking 'studios' at the bottom their gardens where they complete their work uninterrupted.

For anyone with a career in digital remote working is a breeze. A typical day can comprise a webinar, a Skype call, sharing a project plan on Dropbox/Google docs and some real-time messaging via Slack. Instead of a commute you stroll to the end of the garden, fire up the Mac and get straight to work.

This model makes perfect sense as many people's lives get more complicated. They can relieve the reliance on child care, and feel trusted by their employer to deliver their work at a time that suits them. It's also less costly for the business and the individual (no need for a work wardrobe!) Isn't working 9 to 5 a throwback to the 19th Century Industrial Revolution anyway?!

Whilst it is almost universally accepted as a good thing for most businesses, working from home takes real self motivation and discipline. They may not like to admit it but some people thrive better with a clear routine. Without specific hours it can be hard to switch off and distinguish between a home life and a work life.

Some people do need more socialising and the network support of their peers. This is why it's important to get some time in the office on a weekly basis. Regular 'out of the box' meet ups are a great idea for freelancers as well.

Working as a team is something to which we have been paying a lot of attention to of late. With a promise from management to support our company's health and well being agenda we looked at how we could combine the two. A healthy team who enjoy their time together is important for any workplace and it was with this in mind that eight of us signed up to take on the 'Bootneck Challenge'.

This new event comprised a 5K military style obstacle course through mud and rough terrain. To spur us on even further we setup a Mydonate page to earn money for Kier's chosen charity 'Alzheimer's Society'. Our intensive 6 week training regime began with regular regiment fitness sessions after work on a Thursday evening before the main event on Saturday 18th February.

We all had such a fun time completing the course and tackling the 22 obstacles together (including fairy liquid slides and a 9ft high vertical wall).

The team spirit came through as we all crossed the finishing line together, cheered on by family and friends, raising an incredible £1,230 for charity! I also proved to myself that I'm not old yet, despite being due to turn 40 later this year.

Building a good team requires a healthy balance between time spent alone knuckling down and that spent learning from and helping each other. I really like the Luxiflor flag, a little gadget you attach to your monitor signalling to your colleagues to back off when you’re busy. This helps you keep focus on the work you’re doing when you really need to lock in without interruptions. It's best used in an office environment though and not whilst you're trying to clamber over a tyre wall!
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1 comment:

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