In the ever-evolving job market, remote work has become a popular preference among both employers and employees. What surfaced as a necessity to survive through the pandemic has gradually transitioned into a choice everyone wants to embrace. However, while technological advancements have simplified the process of virtual collaboration, an individual still needs certain specific skills to thrive as a remote worker.

Hiring managers are looking for job seekers who possess such skills that make candidates suitable for remote working. These skills ensure that the lack of in-person interaction and the other challenges of not having a physical presence do not hinder the success of a project or the growth of an individual.

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Viju Gangadharan, Head of HR, iMocha, an AI-powered skills intelligence and assessment platform, says that after the pandemic started, a lot of organisations have realised that remote working needs special skills to ensure employees demonstrate discipline and successfully deliver projects while ensuring their own performance-based growth.

So, what are these skills and abilities that you require in order to build a fulfilling professional journey as a remote worker? Gangadharan lists a bunch of essential skills and capabilities remote employees should demonstrate:

  1. Excellent listening and verbal communication skills – Remarkable listening & verbal communication skills are needed to successfully communicate and collaborate in a remote work setting
  2. Time management techniques –Productivity and accountability have to be balanced with other life needs
  3. Intense concentration – Individual can encounter several distractions while operating away from an office setup, so there is a need to keep the focus on the minute details to maintain quality of work
  4. Adaptability – This is of utmost importance in remote setups, as candidates have to get accustomed to changes quickly and embrace new technologies
  5. Self-sufficiency –Operating without any in-person support or guidance means candidates need self-reliance: work independently, make decisions, and take responsibility for their tasks
  6. Cultural sensitivity – Understanding as well as respecting cultural differences is essential for effective collaboration
  7. Knowledge of collaboration tools – Possessing adequate knowledge of remote collaboration tools like MS Teams and Zoom, among others, will make a person more productive

What managers can do to support remote workers
According to Gangadharan, acquiring a set of remote-specific skills is not only restricted to employees. Even managers who lead remote teams have to understand the dynamics of working in such an environment and change their functioning accordingly.Among the most important things a manager should do is investing time in team-building activities. This will bring the members together and make them feel like a team, even if they are working hundreds of miles apart. Managers should also organise virtual meetings regularly to set agendas and discuss the desired outcomes of a project. This should be done before a meeting or conference call with the client or a senior staffer.

While remote working gives flexibility to all, managers should ensure that goals are set in a clear language and communicated properly. Daily or weekly feedback sessions on work and the goals should be organised.

The display of work ethics should be of a higher standard in a remote working environment, adds Gangadharan.


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