Thoughts on Remote Work

I’ve been thinking about remote work due to some top-down policy changes made by my employer. These changes along with other headlines have reminded me how much I value working remotely. I have discussed the benefits and challenges of remote work with my wife and colleagues over the past few months. Through these chats I’ve realized that I need to write my thoughts to clarify and detail my opinions about why remote work is important in today’s world.

My thoughts come from 8 years of full-time remote working and reading many books and blog posts on the subject. I feel that I have learned a lot over the years about what works and what doesn’t. The structure of this post lists of the benefits and challenges of remote work and is intended to be a summary. As I publish my thoughts on each item I’ll update this post with links to individual posts.

Individual Benefits

  1. Flexibility - When and where to work is the biggest benefit of remote work.
  2. Improved Productivity - Fewer distractions allow me to focus and get more done.
  3. Work-Life Balance - Seeing my kids off to school in the morning and driving them to activities keeps me involved in their lives.
  4. Cost Savings - I’ve saved tens of thousands of dollars over the years by not commuting daily and not eating out regularly.
  5. Health and Well-being: Trading time commuting for time exercising is a win both mentally and physically.
  6. Personalized Work Space: I’m lucky to have a dedicated room with a large window with natural sunlight in my house. I also have some great posters and decorations to motivate me.

Company Benefits

  1. Access to Global Talent: By accessing a broader talent pool, companies can find highly skilled individuals not limited by geographical location.
  2. Cost Savings: Reduced need for physical office space, utilities, and related expenses results in significant cost savings.
  3. Increased Productivity: Remote workers are more productive due to fewer distractions and personalized work schedules and environments.
  4. Employee Satisfaction: Remote work options boost employee satisfaction and retention, as it provides flexibility and a better work-life balance.
  5. Diversity and Inclusion: Hiring individuals from different backgrounds and locations promotes diversity and fosters a more inclusive work environment.
  6. Business Continuity: Distributed workers help the company be more resilient to disruptions like weather events, health crises, or internet outages.
  7. Environmental Impact: Reduced commuting results in fewer carbon emissions and higher employee morale.


  1. Communication and Collaboration: Traditional office communication and collaboration methods are less effective in remote work environments and may lead to misunderstandings and delays.
  2. Isolation and Loneliness: Some remote workers struggle with feelings of isolation and loneliness due to not being physically close to other co-workers.
  3. Working Across Time Zones: Finding shared times between various time zones can be challenging and can cause delays in information sharing.
  4. Establishing Work-Life Boundaries: Many new remote workers have difficulty establishing clear boundaries between work and personal life, leading to overworking or decreased productivity.
  5. Staying Motivated: Without clear guidance remote workers may lack focus and lose motivation to accomplish goals.
  6. Not leaving the house: Many workers find they have less reason to leave the house when working remotely.
  7. Technology and Infrastructure: Technical issues and cybersecurity threats are more challenging to manage and monitor with workers distributed geographically.
  8. Management and Oversight: Many managers struggle to ensure tasks are completed, productivity is maintained, and employees feel supported.
  9. Company Cultural: Creating a cohesive company culture and fostering a sense of belonging is difficult when employees are scattered.

This isn’t a comprehensive list but there are some interesting items to delve into deeper and hopefully explain how remote work fits into the modern workplace.