Remote work doesn't create problems, it highlights them

Remote work accelerates

This is part eight of our remote work mental models series. Read the previous post.

Another important way to think about working remotely is that it’s an accelerant, but it doesn’t define the way you work or what you value as a team or company. Think of remote as fuel, but it's not the fire itself.

In other words, remote exposes existing problems, it doesn't create new ones.

If you had communication issues before Covid-19 arrived, remote work probably made them worse. If you spent most of your day sitting in meetings with other stakeholders, remote work probably exacerbated this. It’s the power of compounding at work.

Remote work creates a different environment for working and communicating, but it doesn’t dictate the work that you do or what you say when working with others. It’s like a different lens in which to view the workplace. It’s a different mechanism for getting work done.

I mention this because it’s easy to blame team or company problems on “working remotely”, when in reality, you should consider taking responsibility and fix these issues...remote or not.

Ready for the next principle in the remote work mental models series? Read about why you shouldn't take working from home literally.