It’s so surreal, isn’t it? Like you’re stuck in some end-of-the-world movie. Locked up at home, stocking supplies, watching the news with that constant sinking feeling. And you pinch yourself to see if you can wake up from this nightmare. It’s still hard to come to grips with how, in such a short time, the COVID-19 pandemic has swiftly taken over our thoughts and lives.
As the world continues to grapple with this crisis, mass closures and lockdowns for everyone’s safety have necessitated WFH. But there could be a silver lining to this epic reset in the way we work. It has forced a change in the mind-set of companies previously reluctant to give their employees WFH options and compelled them to set up the infrastructure required to make this possible. This could spark a revolution that can have lasting changes and cause a permanent shift to remote work in the future. A shift that would be great for women and enable more of us to participate in the workforce.
1) Levels the playing field and eliminates barriers to growth
Remote work is results-driven. So you are assessed on what you deliver, rather than any other subjective factors that may come into play. Like gender bias, office politics, popularity contests, or hours spent in the office – for instance.
Asynchronous communication also gives you the opportunity to express your ideas fully, without being interrupted or having to patiently listen to.
2) Work-life balance
You can work at your own pace without being forced to make a trade-off between your career aspirations and personal fulfillment. You can still take care of your personal well-being and self-development- take that class you always wanted, have time for yoga. Travel. Or take care of your home and spend guilt-free time with family – without cost to your career.
3) Saves precious time and money
No more having to spend long arduous hours commuting in heavy traffic. Or your cash on work lunches that add up to your costs. You can also save a ton on those expensive executive wardrobes for power dressing and instead get something else you love. For working parents, it can also mean big savings on child care and most importantly, getting to spend more quality time with your kids.
4) Helps to keep working and stay in the game
With remote working, you don’t have to put your ambitions on the backburner.
You can still build your career while taking care of your family.
You can keep your job without having to start over if you have a spouse whose job demands frequent transfers between cities.
You can make a comfortable comeback after a career break you took to start a family.
Remote work offers the freedom and opportunity that can help women thrive and overcome obstacles in the workplace. So while you may find it difficult to negotiate WFH in the present scenario, the groundwork you lay now will have positive outcomes in the future. Believe me, even the most seasoned WFH pro with a family isn’t operating at 100%.