But working remotely can be a challenge. Not only can telecommuters feel disconnected from the organization, the organization can also feel disconnected from them.
The risks: Remote employees can be slow to receive the information they need to do their jobs. Employees can feel disengaged and, as a result, turnover can increases. Managers doubt whether remote employees are as efficient as those who are in the office.
But there are good tactics to bridge those gaps:
1. Get your focus on
Just because you're working from home, that doesn't mean you should stop taking a shower or clipping your nails.
Keeping a routine helps make the at-home workday feel as regular as one in an office.
2. Keep some office rituals
Do water-cooler things you'd otherwise do in the office, like sending a funny email every day.
Psychologically, this can bridge the distance and make you feel happier.
3. Use company blogs and pages to keep people in the know
Most companies now have an internal-only social network, like Slack or Salesforce Chatter, and/or a Wiki or other blog engine, like Atlassian's Confluence, or Microsoft Sharepoint.
These provide a great way to interact with colleagues in a variety of ways, no matter where they or you are.
4. Embrace virtual collaboration
Collaboration software like Office 365 and Google Apps have fantastic options to edit documents concurrently with other people.
So do many third-party tools such as Zoho Social, Collabee, Appian and Jive, which often come with the ability to embed lists, maintain version control of documents and perform other tasks that help remote teams stay on the same page.
5. Keep lists to stay organized
Simple list apps such as WeDo, Microsoft OneNote, Wunderlist and Clear can do wonders for your productivity.
Give those a try and also search the app stores for other list apps that are specifically tailored to your job function or industry.
6. Make time for face time
It's not enough to talk to your coworkers on the phone. You also should fire up a camera now and then and video conference.
Whether it's WebEx, Google Hangouts or even just a free tool like WhatsApp, engaging via video will help you and your coworkers feel better connected.
If you're someone who enjoys working remotely in coffee shops, that's cool too!
Just make sure you're able to really focus there, and stay home if you have a conference call. No one on your call wants to hear the barista call out "Triple mocha latte ready for Thomas."
Good luck out there!