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I have interviewed 54 remote workers & leaders over last 2 years with a combined experience of 375 years.

This is a detailed post about the most interesting stats, observations & learnings across all those interviews/stories. You can read all the interviews here.

 

Who are these individuals?

1) There's a healthy gender diversity: 59.3% men & 40.7% women.


Remote Work Interviews - Gender Diversity

2) Most individuals belonged to North America (53.7%) & Europe (31.5%).


Remote Work Interviews - Location

3) 40% of individuals do some form of professional writing (books, freelance writing, company blog etc.) and an equal number regularly do software development.

Writing, Software Development, Entrepreneurship & Marketing are the most common functions across all of these remote workers.

Remote Work Interviews - Professions/Function

4) 27.8% individuals have kids & 14.8% have pets (Dog being the most common pet).


Remote Work Interviews - Have Kids

Remote Work Interviews - Have Pets

Remote Work Interviews - Which Pet

5) 1/3rd of individuals have been or are digital nomads & love travelling.


Remote Work Interviews - Digital Nomads


Work preference and finding remote roles

6) More than half of these individuals work independently (freelance or have their own company).

Only 17% of individuals work for established firms.

Remote Work Interviews - Work Preference

7) Personal network is the best way to find remote roles followed by asking your employer to turn your existing job to a remote position.

Only 24% of individuals found remote job portals to be useful.

Remote Work Interviews - Finding Remote Jobs


Transition to remote working

8) The initial phase of transitioning to the remote lifestyle has been the toughest challenge.

After the initial transition, remote workers keep battling against the challenges of switching off from work & lack of socialisation daily.

Remote Work Interviews - Transition to Remote

9) Naturally, more than half of individuals found the switch to remote working challenging.


Remote Work Interviews - Switch to Remote

10) Surprisingly, 2/3rd individuals stumbled upon remote working and it was not a conscious choice.


Remote Work Interviews - How did they become a remote worker

11) Regardless, ~70% were excited by the prospect of getting to work remotely and only < 4% were skeptical about it.


Remote Work Interviews - Excited about remote working


Mental and physical health

12) 17% individuals feel that remote work actually does wonders for mental health whereas an equal number feel it has a negative impact.


Remote Work Interviews - Mental Health

13) 1/3rd individuals feel that exercising regularly (with a proper workout schedule) is important for all remote workers and 4% individuals feel bas that they don't exercise enough.


Remote Work Interviews - Physical Health


Best and worst things about remote working

14) Flexibility & freedom is the best thing about remote working for more than half of individuals.

13% love that they get to spend more time with family while an equal number love that they get to travel so much.

Remote Work Interviews - Best thing about remote working

15) Loneliness & isolation is the worst thing about remote working for almost half of individuals while ~25% feel it is the inability to disconnect from work.


Remote Work Interviews - Worst thing about remote working


Tools, motivation to work remotely and views on future of remote work

16) Slack & Zoom are by far the most popular choice in remote working tools (used by > 50% individuals) followed by Google's collaboration products and specific choices like Trello, Grammarly, Basecamp, Spotify.


Remote Work Interviews - Tools

17) More challenging work or doing something they like remains the motivation to work remotely for ~25% of individuals while it is pursuing their passion for travel for ~17% people.


Remote Work Interviews - Challenges

18) ~60% of individuals predict that there will be a significant spike in permanent remote working whereas ~25% feel there are still changes required for remote work to succeed at large-scale.


Remote Work Interviews - Future of Work


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  2. 4

    Really appreciate your efforts for the remote working community. Eager to read more such interesting remote work stories in 2021 🤞

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      Thanks Lucas - glad you liked the post :)

    2. 4

      Thanks for sharing this! Really interesting findings. I'm not sure I understand what it means that "remote work spoils you" (in the "worst thing about remote work" section).

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        Cheers Sophia :)

        So that option is when people said they love everything about remote working but they fear the flexibility & freedom is spoiling them and they may never be able to do a 9-5 kind of routine if needed.

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          Ah ok I get it. Indeed, it's very difficult to imagine being back to a traditional office setup. 

      2. 4

        Thanks for sharing! I found really interesting the Mental and physical health graph, I would like to be part of the significant spike in permanent remote work!

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          Cheers Samuel :)

        2. 4

          Thank you for compiling all this info, it's a lot of fun - and clear- to see it this way. Interesting how it's a tie amount those that feel it affects mental health negatively and the ones that feel it does wonders for it.

          It will be very cool to see this get new data in the next few months/years when more people will become (or remain) remote :)

           

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            True, I am working on the 2021 remote work report as well, so will have some new interesting insights soon :)

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            Great insight - Thank you. Can you share a link to the survey and we can share it with oru contacts?

            1. 1

              That would be great Joe, here's the link - Survey Link.