Remote Work in Tech: Challenges and Best Practices

Personal Journey with Remote Work:

I have been a remote worker for the past several years and cannot see my life being any other way than this. I get to do all the things I love, provide meaningful value in my work, and spend time with the people who will always be by my side.

It was not always this way though. In my early days of remote work, I simply could not find the right balance between working too many hours (which led to burning out very quickly) and managing my time effectively to do other healthy things with my day (such as the gym and spend time with my loved ones).

I am hoping this article will provide some best practices on what to do and what not to do as a full time remote worker.


  1. Plan out your day. I spend every morning / night writing down bullet points on what I need to get done and simply check them off as the day goes on in my physical planner. We are psychologically drawn towards checking off our to-do lists, our brain releases dopamine which is a direct cause of positive feelings such as motivation and pleasure.
  2. Get your ZZZZZZZZs! You should aim for 8 hours of sleep every single night to feel good the next day, ensuring you are the best version of yourself and maximally productive.
  3. Be consistent. You should aim to consistently show up for you and your team. There should be a clear line of open communication at all times during your working hours in order to help your team and organization move forward at a quicker pace.


  1. DO NOT WASTE TIME. I recently heard something so off putting I have to share it here. If on average we live up to about 76 years old, that is equivalent to ~4,000 total weeks. Do you understand how little that number is? How many times we have begged for the week to go by faster, or even mentioned that this week went by quickly? Make sure you carry yourself as the best version you can ever be, providing high quality work, maintaining high quality relationships and giving back as much as you can daily (does not have to be monetary).
  2. DO NOT TAKE THIS OPPORTUNITY FOR GRANTED. You absolutely cannot slack off just because you are not in the office 8 hours a day while being micro managed. You are still obligated to work these specific hours and there is always someone hungrier than you ready to prove themselves for that spot.
  3. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP As mentioned before, time goes on with or without you. Make use of your time very wisely, do not spend hours and hours trying to figure something out when someone on your team already has a working solution for you. All you have to do is ask. 2 or more minds are much greater than one. If you are a junior developer, I encourage you to stick by your senior engineer and ask lots of meaningful questions.

Setting Up a Productive Workspace:

It is important to have a dedicated workspace that has minimal distractions. You need an area where you can focus without any interruptions. This has been the key to my success as a remote Software Engineer. I have a very simple setup: work laptop (Macbook Pro 16 inch), desk and ergonomic chair to help with the long hours of sitting here typing away.

Effective Communication:

The importance of clear and frequent communication in a remote setting is the biggest factor in this world. My company uses Zoom, Slack & Jira in order to attend regular video calls, know what our workload looks like, and collaborate in real-time. There a plenty of other tools being used in this industry, remote life would not be possible without them. Use them to your advantage and you will be successful.

Time Zone Challenges:

At BrightInsight we are a very diverse group of individuals. I have coworkers I collaborate with daily who are across the entire globe from me and it is extremely important I respect their time zone when I reach out to them. Thankfully, slack lets me know the time they are currently in. This allows me to make the decision if it is an appropriate time to reach out to someone or not based on their time zone. Worst case scenario, they have their notifications paused and will reach back out when they are within their working hours again.

Self-Motivation and Discipline:

Staying motivated and disciplined when working remotely is a challenge in itself. This is why it is important you set many attainable goals that are realistic and timely. We have quarterly reviews, where my manager and I speak 1 on 1 about how my performance has been during the previous quarter. It is the best time to set some new goals and cross off the ones I were able to achieve. You should always look at your life in terms of milestones. What milestones will you be able to reach in your foreseeable future? Write them down. It makes all the difference versus thinking them in your head and forgetting you even had it to begin with.