Conclusion of one year of remote working

For the past year, I have been working on Oahu. For all that time, I lived in Lyon, while Oahu’s HQ is based in Paris.

I was therefore working remotely, and traveling on average onee day a month to visit the company’s office in Paris.
In this article, I am going to try to thow my vision of that remote working year, the positive and negative points I have noticed.

Social life

Before working remotely, I had the same doubts as most folks: working alone from home is going to make me antisocial. I won’t see anyone anymore etc. For that reason, I bought this poster and hung it in my office.

I actually noticed the exact opposite. I found myself seeing many more people than before. Once my working day was over, I didn’t want to stay at home anymore, as I had spent the day there.

Not having colleagues with whom I could have lunch also meant I very regularly ate with friends (mostly students, as they are the most available ones).

From a social point of view, this year has therefore been entirely positive.

Professional life

Communication

Oahu isn’t a big company. There currently 6 folks; we were 8 one year ago.
Off those 8 persons, 3 of us weren’t based in HQ. Fran├žois, in Grenoble; Cyril in Nantes and me in Lyon.

Remote working can only work if more than one person is remote.
It’s so easy to talk with in-office persons about changes, and to make decisions without keeping the other collaborators on the project that it’s make someone’s integration very hard.
This is only a supposition though, as it’s not what happened here.

At least, not completely. It happened once or twice during the year, that I discovered as a surprise some decisions about the company for which remote employees were kept unaware.

I see this problem in many (actually, all) the companies where I know someone is remote working.

This blog

Before remotely working, I use to write a lot more of articles on this blog.
I spent the last year trying to motivate myself to write articles, like I did before, during my lunch break.

It was however so tempting to just watch a tv show during this break, that I did not succeed.

Conclusion

This post is quite short because I don’t want to give a bad image to this remote working experience, even less of Oahu.

This year was a particularly interesting experience. If I has to start again though, I would think twice before starting, because of the problems mentioned above.

If I stopped remote working, it’s because Franck and I are starting our company, evome.

Tomorrow, when I’ll need to hire someone, I also believe I’ll think twice before accepting him/her to be remote working.

Not that I don’t trust the person not to be able to work from home.

However, I want to avoid reproducing similar issues that I’ve seen in my previous working experiences, and I’m now convinced that in order to have a good team cohesion and internal communication, all collaborators needs to meet, and that every day of the week.