Wern Ancheta

Adventures in Web Development.

On Working Remotely

| Comments

It’s been a year since I started working remotely and I never regret any moment of it. In this post I’m going to share some of my thoughts in working remotely. Some of the pros and cons, and how to stay productive even if there’s no boss breathing down your neck.

For those who don’t know what telecommuting is. Here’s a helpful description from Wikipedia:

Telecommuting, remote work, telework is a work arrangement in which employees do not commute to a central place of work.
A person who telecommutes is known as a “telecommuter”, “teleworker”, and sometimes as a “home-sourced” employee.

Ok now that were on the same page let’s begin.


  • Less interruptions.
  • Less distractions (only if you are disciplined).
  • Less time wasted on transportation.
  • Comfortable work environment.
  • More productive.


  • No social interactions. Telecommute workers will basically miss out on random office chats and other social events that happens outside the office (E.g. company paid outings).

  • There’s so little trust. This is basically because the person that you are working with doesn’t see if you’re really working or not.

  • You can’t ask for help. Team mates can be working while you’re sleeping and most of the time they’re too busy with their own work.

  • You can’t see what other employees in the company are working on. Though this is normal I believe there is a benefit in knowing what projects others are working on especially the senior one’s. You know the type of office interaction where you can ask questions to other employees and learn something from their answers.

How to Stay Productive

Telecommuting is hard if you don’t have the discipline to work without a boss breathing down your neck every second of the day. So the main ingredient needed to successfuly work remotely is discipline. The kind of discipline that will keep you from looking at your Facebook or Twitter stream every 5 minutes. Or watching some dancing cat ninjas on Youtube. Or endlessly browsing Stumbleupon.

Another important ingredient is love for the work that you do. By loving the work that you do you will have no problem working overtime if you don’t think you’ve done good enough for the day.

Lastly, you should always have a todo list so that you can keep track of what to do, what’s done and what needs some review.

That’s all there is to it really. You don’t need the Pomodoro technique or any other technique to be productive. All you need is discipline and love for your work.