Sarah Thomas

Remote work requires traits and soft skills that fit into your company’s culture and a virtual environment. Find out which traits are most important for a culture fit with remote work.

What is Culture?

A company’s culture includes the values and style of work expected from employees. In your company’s culture, you may be expected to work beyond a typical workday, or they may value ending the workday at a specific time. The style of work and how you communicate with others is a reflection of your company’s culture.

Culture starts from the top of the company, according to Miro. The CEO and leadership within the company demonstrate the traits that fit the company culture – such as being attentive listeners, active learners, and showing compassion.

Zapier says that culture defines how you work. For example, your company culture is a guideline for how quickly you respond to internal and external emails, how long workdays are, and how often you communicate with each other.

Culture Fit

Fitting in with your company’s culture means that you have the traits and values that are important to how your company functions. If your company culture is a communicative culture, you should ensure that you’re ready to communicate frequently with your supervisor and coworkers. Or, if your company values independence, be prepared to take the initiative on projects and work independently.

If you’re setting the culture in your company, there are several steps you must take to ensure that your employees understand the culture. Be clear about goals and ask for frequent feedback from employees suggests Miro. Trusting each other is the key to working efficiently and effectively, especially while on a remote team. Practice what you preach, and lead by example. Employees will pick up on cultural cues from how you behave.

Culture in a Remote Environment

Remote working is a unique environment for a company. Forbes suggests over-communicating so that expectations are clear while working apart. They also recommend having a set end to the day, so that employees can feel the separation between their work time and personal time. Check in with employees frequently, either through virtual town halls or via a culture committee that monitors and maintains culture throughout the company.

Use tools like Slack or Zoom to stay in contact with each other, and make space to have fun on those apps throughout the workweek.  Set aside time for virtual happy hours, or time before meetings to engage in small talk and check in with employees.

Inc suggests that remote company culture focuses on transparency, camaraderie, gratitude, and happiness. Be transparent and tell your employees what is going on at all levels of the company. Encourage employees to work together and build up your team with team-building exercises. Have your team take our assessment and spend time getting to know yourselves and each other.

The Most Important Traits

As an employee in a remote workplace, be sure to exhibit these traits: self-discipline and flexibility. Business Insider suggests that self-discipline is the number one trait to showcase when working remotely. You must be disciplined during your workday to minimize distractions and stay focused on your tasks.  Flexibility is an important trait for successful remote work. Stay flexible to changing situations. Be sure to communicate openly with your team no matter what arises throughout your day.

Work on your communication skills because they are invaluable in a virtual environment. Check-in with your teammates during the workday, and communicate your needs as well.  Above all, maintain a positive outlook, especially if you’re new to remote work and adjusting to this lifestyle.