Times have changed! Things have changed!
Everyone knows the tale of how when Covid hit and no one had a clue of what would be next, life-wise or work-wise. How people who were essentially needed in the office were forced to work from home. Interestingly enough, things didn’t really fall apart– it was the opposite actually. More was being done.
This went on for some time until lockdowns were lifted and people started to think about their mental health and work/life balance. They thought about how they were working even longer hours and not giving enough time to themselves or their families, which eventually gave birth to the work from anywhere model. People started working from the mountains, the beaches & everything in between for weeks & months, thanks to Airbnb.
This is how it all started again for me. I already had worked remotely in 2018 so this was not really new for me, but it was different. I usually went out to coworking spaces or some brewery that masqueraded as a coworking space before 6 PM or from a Lakeside Hotel. However, this time, it was working from Home, all the time, every time and was not at all as easy as it sounded.
But then as time went by & working from home was still the norm, things started to feel good. There were a lot of instances where it really shined for me. How, you ask?
1. I had my first kid during the third wave of the pandemic.
Things were tough, yes, but working from home was a boon in disguise. I was able to spend so much time with my son, see him grow up and of course, help my wife, which I would never have been able to do if I had to go to the office every day. You are just too exhausted when you’re back to do anything. Have your dinner & go to sleep– that’s all you have the energy left for.
I was helping my wife and playing with my kid, and it took quite some time out of my day.
2. I was working when I felt the most productive.
Instead of sitting for 8-9 hours in the office and doing work worth 3-4 hours, I was able to do that work in about half the time. So, you’re working ‘less’ but you’re more productive, with the comfort of your home and the ability to play with your kid. This is a game changer!
3. I was able to relax and recharge.
When this got boring, we went on week-long breaks in the mountains. Good weather, good air, not worrying about how many leaves I have left, because hey, it’s work from anywhere. During this 10-day vacation, the work didn’t suffer & neither did my mental health. It was a win-win!
4. I felt connected to coworkers.
This respite was not the only thing that was great about working from anywhere. You don’t have to go to a place to work with your team, as everyone’s wherever with big smiles on their face, and are connected via Zoom/Slack while getting the work done. So now, when you need to hire people, why restrict yourself to the limited talent pool in your area? Go global, cause remember, one can work from anywhere!
In my current project, we have our Product Managers and design team in the US with developers in India and Japan. With so many different people from different cultures, working together as a team, you get to learn so many new things from people every day.-Gaurav
Was it difficult to manage things at the start? YES! But now, we don’t even feel that’s a problem, we’ve adapted to it and different time zones are not a problem anymore. We’ve delivered quite some features with this team and will continue to do so. When your team is scattered across the globe like ours, you understand that the work will happen asynchronously. You ask your questions, assign the work, and trust that the person will take care of the work when they’re next available. If you work well, you get trust as a by-product. What more can you ask for, right? Bye-bye to micro-management. 😉
So, what I intend to say here is, I AM NEVER GOING BACK TO OFFICE! Kidding, the office has its own joys. Some days you definitely want to not work from home, but most of these days, I’m going to be working from anywhere.