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4 Common Mistakes Remote Workers Make

3rd party post

3rd party post

Remote work is becoming common for freelancers and full-time employees alike. It is also becoming a cause of conflict in the workplace. Here are four common mistakes remote workers make and steps to take to avoid making them yourself.

Ignoring the Legal Issues

If you handle company data on your personal computer and there is a “data spill” with restricted information processed by your computer, will you have to have your personal computer wiped or private internet history reviewed by the company? If this isn’t acceptable, either use a company provided device when working from home or use a computer you would be able to work without if the company confiscates it for a digital brain wipe. Another issue you need to discuss is data retention policies, such as the need to document and store any messages you share with the company or customers. How does the company want you to back up these messages in the manner they are legally required to follow? If your device is bricked, will the company pay for an iPhone data recovery service to recover both personal and corporate data?

Never Disconnecting

Companies are embracing remote work when it results in 24x7x365 support, such as the ability for their best IT staff to work a 10 PM to midnight maintenance window from home and respond to problems on a Saturday afternoon. One of the biggest mistakes remote workers make is never disconnecting from work. Employers and customers will consider you always connected and reach out to you anytime they want to if you don’t set boundaries. A common problem is remote workers putting in more hours than when they worked in the office and having work interrupt family time and down time, increasing stress without resulting in higher pay. Make sure you disconnect from work, silencing the phone, sending emails and instant messages to a folder that you’ll read later. The word for people always on call is servant, not employee.

Relying Only on One Communication Channel

One major mistake remote workers make is relying on one communication channel. Baby Boomers tend to rely on phone calls with some email. The forty and fifty-something workers tend to rely on emails. Those in their twenties and thirties tend to rely on instant messaging and text messaging. This can result in segregation of communications, leaving out whole sections of a team because they don’t follow the conversation in that medium. Remember to shake things up and call a customer to discuss issues too complex for an email or send an instant message to IT for a quick issue instead of a longer email that may take them a few hours to check.

Forgetting a Backup Plan

Remote workers often fail to have a backup plan. What will you do if the power goes out in your apartment? Do you have a backup battery that would allow you to keep working for a few hours or at least a five-minute reserve from a UPS so you can save your work? Do you already know somewhere you could move in case your personal internet connection is down, whether a coworking space or the library?

Conclusion

Determine your legal obligations and risks before you start remote work. Disconnect from work even if connected to the internet personally to protect work-life balance. Don’t rely on a single communication channel and use the medium that works for that person and type of message. Have a backup plan in case utilities or internet goes out at home, but understand how the environment you relocate to impacts your work.

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5 Desktop Email Clients You Should Consider in 2017

Guest post presented by a 3rd party

Guest post presented by a 3rd party

It’s easy to use your web browser to log in to the likes of Outlook and Gmail. However, if you’re looking for instant notifications of new emails and many more email features, it’s important you download the right email client straight to your desktop. This is especially important if you run a business because your clients don’t want to wait a long time to hear back from you. If you’re looking for a new email client, consider the ones below as they are currently the best on the market.

Claws Mail

Claws Mail is one of the fastest and most extensible desktop email clients out there and should be highly considered if you’re looking for a basic desktop email management experience. The program itself is very basic, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have the ability to be feature-rich. The open source program can work with multiple plugins such as RSS aggregators and anti-spam filters, giving you an email client that does everything you need in a simple environment.

Thunderbird

Unfortunately, Thunderbird was discontinued by Mozilla developers in 2012, and while this puts many users off downloading the program, it still has a stable version that is feature-rich. Unlike some of the other email clients on the market, Thunderbird promises to offer you everything you need and is one of the most well-developed clients out there. Thunderbird has plenty of features to keep your emails organized so you can choose between a basic or advanced emailing experience depending on your requirements.

The Bat!

The Bat! Isn’t one of the most popular email clients available, but what it does offer is a basic emailing experience with plenty of features that safeguard your correspondence. The Bat! Comes with all the basic emailing features, but it’s also highly extensible thanks to the many available plugins.

eM Client

eM Client is one of the more popular email clients as it’s fully-featured and has all the basic and more advanced features that make emailing and organization easy. Whether you’re just looking to check personal emails or you’re running an email marketing campaign with a list acquired from theemailfinder.co – eM Client has everything you need to make your experience easy.

Mailbird

Mailbird was primarily designed for the latest Windows 7, 8, and 10 users, and it has a reputation of being one of the most reliable Windows email clients around. Mailbird is one of the fastest and user-friendly applications out there, but more importantly, it’s very accurate and easy to operate. If you’re looking for a nice-looking email client that’s basic and easy to use, you should consider Mailbird as your primary email client.

There are hundreds if not thousands of email clients available to download for free, but the ones above are some of the most powerful and fastest applications available. If you run a business, it’s important you are promptly notified when you receive a new email, and there aren’t many better ways of getting those notifications than using your favorite email client.

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A Matter of Priorities

As someone who owns and runs a business, you have to make some important decisions in the course of your day. Where you place importance will often times dictate how you make your decisions. The question remains, what are your priorities and are they in line with your goals for your business? Examine the list below and see how you rank your priorities.  There is no right or wrong order, just an order that feels right for you. Obviously, some of the questions you ask will also dictate the priority you select, but in general, what order feels right for your company?

  • Customers
  • Employees
  • Products and Services
  • Systems and Policies

Here are what some top business leaders have to say on the subject:

Richard Branson - "Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of the employees, they will take care of the client."

Jeff Bezos - "We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It's our job every day to make every aspect of the customer experience a little better."

Tim Ferriss - "I value self-discipline, but creating systems that make it next to impossible to misbehave is more reliable than self-control."

Gary Vaynerchuk - "If you make a great product and you can get people to taste it, both literally and metaphorically, then there's a tremendous opportunity for your name to spread on its own...win simply by making a great product that people can't help but talk about."

What are your priorities?

 

 

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