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The Challenges of Remote Work

Wed Feb 22 2023

Remote Work

00:00 - 12:40

  • Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, co-founders of 37 Signals, have been working remotely for over 20 years.
  • Time zones are a challenge when it comes to scheduling meetings and collaborating with new employees.
  • Pairing up a designer and programmer in different time zones requires careful consideration of their experience levels.
  • Four hours of overlap is the sweet spot for collaboration between remote workers.
  • Remote work has its limitations, such as the need for overlapping work hours and avoiding graveyard shifts.
  • Remote work does not mean hiring from anywhere in the world; there still needs to be overlap.
  • Remote work requires overlap and synchronous communication.
  • Offshoring is not remote work, it's throwing work over the wall to save money.
  • 37 Signals pays remote workers the same as San Francisco-based employees.
  • Meetups are more expensive than office space, but they're worth it and recharge human batteries.
  • Fully remote work without any in-person interaction is not sustainable for humans.
  • Real-time communication should be used sparingly in remote work; asynchronous communication is preferred.
  • Remote work is a different platform that requires a different approach, not just installing Slack and Zoom.
  • Hybrid models of some people in the office and some working remotely have their own challenges.

Hybrid Models

12:21 - 18:43

  • A hybrid model with 75% in-house and 25% remote is difficult because there will be bias towards those who are local.
  • To make a hybrid model work, everyone should have the opportunity to come into the office.

Benefits of Remote Work

18:14 - 23:01

  • Remote work allows companies to hire the best talent regardless of location.
  • Some people prefer working in an office, and it's okay for companies to choose to be in-person.
  • The human population is about 75% extroverts and 25% introverts, but at 37 signals, it's likely the opposite.
  • 75% of the human population are extroverts, while 25% are introverts.
  • There should be companies that cater to people who enjoy working from home or remotely.
  • It is difficult for big companies to transition back to in-person work because some employees prefer remote work.
  • Some people will never go back to the office and would rather quit than do so.
  • Busting the myth that remote work is impossible has opened up many options for companies and individuals.
  • Startups can now be funded and founded in other places besides San Francisco.