That's what we're trying to do! In general, do you really think that remote work is suitable for everyone?
I actually created this interactive application
that shows remote trends by different U.S. cities. Unsurprisingly if you look at the agricultural cities with tons of blue-collar labor, there are physical constraints that prevent people in those areas from going remote. But, as more and more professions become digital, remote will continue to grow.
But at the same time, so long as the problems of social isolation and communication are not being addressed, it's going to be a slow push. Also for many people who work in the office and don't have to deal with a long commute, they will likely push back against the remote movement. They love the office conversation they have, and the physical community that they fostered at their office. They simply enjoy being immersed in that setup.
But I hope that even if you decide to work in a physical office space, you will have the mechanics of communication set up such that you can work remotely if you need to. That will be the hardest to bridge, because the natural inclination for people inside of physical offices is to tap someone on the shoulder. But that immediately excludes anyone who might be part of your team who isn't physically located there. So we need to figure out how to combat that communication asymmetry.
Even though everybody will not necessarily go remote, I hope that there is more thoughtfulness about including remote workers, even if there is a physical office. So the hardest thing about remote work is unplugging yourself, changing clothes or something. Me, personally, I can not get out of the house for several days. How do you handle that? I know that you meditate, play basketball...
I've had this conversation many times with remote workers who say the exact same thing. I think that the best way to deal with this is to keep scheduling a consistent cadence of activities throughout the week.
I personally like to have three or four instances throughout the week of me attending an event or playing basketball — something that's completely disconnected from work.
More tactically, I try to add three calendar events past 6:00 PM, somewhere between Monday and Thursday. The most important part is to be very diligent and purposeful about scheduling that time at the start of the week. Do you plan to scale your product by hiring remotely in the future?
I definitely want to hire remotely.
Firstly, I want to increase the space of options for excellent talent, because it's so difficult to find great talent that's actually available on the market in the Bay Area.
Secondly, even if you can recruit these talented engineers in the Bay Area away from the FAANG companies, you have to pay them an absurd amount to retain them because the cost of living is so high. If you're in the Bay Area and especially if you're trying to be a capital-efficient business, the most rational decision to make is to hire remotely.
Moreover, I believe in remote work and I want to practice what I preach. I want to do whatever I can to move this movement forward. Especially since I've spent so much time into understanding what makes a remote team successful, I think I have a really good playbook for how to create an excellent remote team. As I said, I'm pretty sure that you are going to make it work with the magic of remote teams!
Yeah, the ball's in our court. I think we'll find a great strategy for hiring the best talent in the remote space!