These days, there’s certainly no shortage of remote work guides, how-tos and tools – and rightfully so: Remote work has made sense since before 2020 and in the future it’ll be the new default for many industries.
Emergency Remote is another more recent take on how to quickly implement a productive remote work environment that focuses on actionable measures with immediate benefits and using the changes required as an opportunity for improving your company’s overall processes and work environment:
Emergency Remote is for managers and employees thrown into a remote work situation, yet want to make the best of it. – Emergency Remote is a book of opportunity. It lights the way to turn a forced remote work situation into a great management success. It contains simple steps that will help you not only keep operating, but blow away the competition.
While I’m not exactly sure if “winning” is the right metaphor for successfully implementing a distributed work environment, many of the key aspects mentioned in this book bear repeating. The hallmarks of successful remote work environments that by now have materialised and solidified in my opinion are these (in the authors’ own words):
- Evergreen communication, asynchronous communication: Evergreen Communication achieves productive work and always-available conversations. Both are “evergreen”, meaning preserved. To accomplish that, two things are needed. First, asynchronous (async) communication — communication without the expectation of immediate response.
- Fix everything: Every company has problems in need of fixing. Sometimes they are overlooked, sometimes there’s no time to take care of them. Sometimes we think because other people are quiet about it, it must be fine.
- Abolish meetings: Meetings are the enemy of Evergreen Communication. Not only do they prevent the evergreen benefits, they also actively stop productive work from happening.
Asynchronous, persistent written communication in particular is key when it comes to long-term, sustainable success in distributed work environments.