Building Remotely

Mia Nguyen Mia Nguyen
Building Remotely

On June 24, 2020 the RemoteHQ team welcomed Iwo Szapar to the Future of Work podcast. Dialing in from Hanoi, Vietnam, Iwo was even talking to us from the “future” as we discussed what best practices newly remote teams should instill, how to personally cope with the lack of serendipity as team members now dial in from their respective homes, why companies should empower their employees to work remotely moving forward, and more!

🎧Listen Here

To dive right in, click below to listen to the 25-minute podcast or view the longer interview on YouTube.

Listen on Apple Podcasts here!
Watch the full interview on YouTube!

💨Quick Takeaways

Iwo began building companies at the age of 21 resulting in a pocketful of valuable lessons and mind full of memories. Described as a relentless doer, he is driven by a love for travel (lived on 3 different continents, while visiting 65 countries!) and passion for his work which pushes him to be productive anytime, anywhere. Featured by BBC, Forbes, and Business Insider as he advocates for the #remotework revolution, Iwo has the answers to your questions below and more!

My company is now suddenly operating remotely, what should I do?!

Deep breath! To create a thriving culture in the remote setup is a challenge, and the processes and practices required to enable such cannot be implemented overnight. As a leader, the items that should be top of mind are employee engagement, personal well-being, and empowering the individual. The questions, “How do you make sure that team members remain connected? What protocols need to be set in place to ensure employees have protected time to ‘sign off’? How do you work efficiently while distributed?” need to be answered. As part of the solution, Iwo shares the importance of consistency, time blocking, and trust.

Do I need to hire for a “Head of Remote” position?

While Iwo is seeing a trend towards this, he does not believe it’s necessary for every company as it depends on the team size and number of things that need to be changed in order for the company to be able to work remotely. Rather than creating temporary positions like this, Iwo predicts there to be an increase in the number of consultants hired to help with the transition and smaller projects.

I want to continue working remotely but my manager is unsure. How can I change their mind?

Shifting the mindset of how individuals work is difficult! However, Iwo reminds us that remote work is not a new concept as NASA actually introduced the first public form of it in the 1970s when the organization introduced telecommunications. To encourage the continuation of remote work, Iwo suggests highlighting positive case studies to your manager that showcases the benefits, both individually and to the company, that comes from working remotely. Additionally, it is important to compromise so he challenges us to begin thinking what a hybrid model of both working from the office and home might look like.  

What are the three main reasons I should work remotely?

Trust, happiness, and freedom.

Those are just a few pieces of advice that Iwo has to share. To digest more, listen to the full podcast here, make sure to follow him on LinkedIn, and check out the Remote-How Academy for more tips.

Thanks for tuning in,

Mia & the RemoteHQ team