I see many people want to do remote jobs. But in my experience, there are some things that you need before you can have a great remote work career.
Consider it as the smallest definite checklist.
Note that these might be true for office jobs as well but there, the requirements are relaxed.
For example - You can do well even if your communication skills are poor. You might get promoted as well. But having bad communication skills will make it impossible to work remotely.
You need to communicate well. If you can’t speak English (or your team’s language), that’s an issue.
Remote work features both spoken and written communication. And you need to be decent at both since confusion or lack of clarity can be harmful to your team.
If your team is in different timezones, often you will be at a spot where you don’t know what to do next and your manager will not be online to tell you.
Or you just came across an unexpected situation and you will have no one to discuss with. In that case, you need to be able to weigh the choices and make the best decision for the team so that you utilize your time.
You will need to do some timezone overlap to work remotely if your team is across the globe.
A 100% overlap isn't required but there will be meetings and scrum calls and you need to be ready for that.
Your timezone shouldn’t cause problems for the team.
In remote work, mentorship is scarce. Or not the same as you would get in an office job. So you need to be able to deliver good work.
Work that gets accepted in the first shot or doesn’t need much to-and-fro. Because, to-and-fro wastes even more time in a remote setting where members live in different, sometimes opposite timezones.
Also, failing reflects badly in remote work. This is because, in an office job, your manager can see that you did the work or at least tried. But in a remote job, it can be assumed that you didn’t do the work or slacked off.
If you identify yourself with each of the points mentioned above, consider yourself ready for remote work.
If not, work on them.
PS - I am working on a remote jobs list for India. It has 300+ tech remote jobs available in the Indian timezone. Check it out. GoRemote
This article was first posted to my newsletter.