There are numerous benefits to working from home; flexibility, no commuting, no office distractions, lower costs and better work-life balance to name a few.
But there are also some benefits of working in the office; the regular conversations, the routine, the team energy and motivation and potentially learning more about the job and the goings-on.
And maybe one of the biggest ones of all – being visible for internal career opportunities.
It is hard enough to promote yourself in the office, let alone doing it from home, where it may not be as easy to see the hard work being put in and the results generated. And sometimes it is not even about getting a step closer to those opportunities. Sometimes it is just about getting the respect and recognition you deserve.
So how can you be visible whilst working remotely?
Create weekly/monthly round ups
Report on your work. This could be in the form of a PowerPoint, a video call or quite simply short bullet points of your previous week/month.
This is not your to-do list and should not detail every activity you are working on. It should be a brief summary of what you have achieved or anything that you think the organisation should know about.
So include results, figures, next steps. As well as including your successes, include losses or improvements for next time – this acknowledges ownership as well as showing dedication and perseverance.
Is there something that you have always wanted to learn at work or shadow a particular role? Shout up and ask! It could be taking a responsibility from your manager, joining a particular meeting, or learning more from a colleague. It’s a great opportunity to be connected to those that you may not normally speak to!
Suggest and contribute to company initiatives/actions
It could be sharing a project plan template that you have found useful and suggesting this method to be used going forward. Or recommending a new section on the intranet so employees feel more connected.
Or maybe it is something simple like pulling together a document detailing your team structure – what people’s roles are, what their job entails and what their focuses are, so the rest of the organisation are aware. This will help to increase their visibility as well as yours!
You may not be seen by many at home, but online is where it is different. Get on LinkedIn and be an advocate for the company; promote and share news, post regular updates, and celebrate others’ successes.
Show your face – literally!
It is so easy during these video calls to sit there with the camera off. But it can be a little off-putting for the other people on the call! It is harder to interact without seeing the other person so you may remain out of sight, out of mind.
And during these calls, put your name to tasks. Offer your expertise. And just make yourself heard…and seen!
Communicate with others you may not regularly work with
Reach out to them. Start conversations about their work and if relevant to your job, see if you can support them with anything. Depending on your role, create focus groups for projects/discussions and invite various people to the meeting.
Being remote doesn’t mean you have to work twice as hard to be seen. Otherwise you could become so focused on being visible, that you aren’t doing your day job to the best of your ability.
Instead, put 10 minutes aside on a Friday afternoon to report back on your week (which is also beneficial for you to see, not just the company!) or to share some company updates on LinkedIn.
Use your time wisely – obviously ensure you have time to spare when asking to take on something new. But switching the camera on takes two seconds (ignoring any technological issues!) so there’s no excuses!