7 Practical Tips to Work (and Lead) Remotely

Molly Fletcher
March 17, 2020

Molly Fletcher

Female Jerry Maguire, CEO, Keynote Speaker & Author
Future of Work Culture/Work Environment Health Leadership Employee Engagement

If you are like many people, you may not be reading this week’s blog from your office. As COVID-19 spreads, most employers are encouraging their people to work from home for an indefinite period of time. That shift can be overwhelming and even frustrating. You are probably wondering how to work and communicate effectively. As a leader, you face the unique challenge of keeping your team focused and engaged. I’ve intentionally embraced a flexible work environment with my team for the last several years, so if you are new to working remotely, here are a few tips learned through firsthand experience:

1. Make use of your “commute time.” The average American commute time is 26 minutes one-way. Use that time to create a morning ritual that kick-starts your day, whether it’s blocking out time to exercise, journal, or listen to a podcast.

2. Designate an office area. Even if you are just working remotely short-term, it’s beneficial to have a dedicated area where you consistently work. Otherwise, the line between personal space and workspace quickly blurs. Of course, you can switch things up, but setting up an office area will help create separation and keep you focused on the task at hand.

3. Set boundaries. Even though you aren’t in a traditional office environment, it’s important to set boundaries. If you are a leader, set the example by managing expectations around when your team is “on the clock.” And set boundaries with other people. If a friend or family members call you in the middle of the day because they know you are working remotely, gently remind them you are still at work! A simple “I’m under a work deadline right now, but can’t wait to talk after work around 5:30” usually works.

4. Leverage the right apps. Our team uses Slack as an informal messaging tool to get quick feedback, brainstorm ideas and celebrate wins. It’s a great way to clear the clutter of an email inbox and streamline conversations, and it can also be your remote “water cooler” chat that you naturally get in an office. When used the right way, technology can be a great way to keep everyone engaged. Just make sure it is working for you.

5. Practice time blocking. Focusing in a new work environment can be an adjustment. Many of my podcast guests like Cal Newport suggest a technique called “time blocking.” Schedule chunks of time on your calendar for specific items you need to accomplish and be realistic about the time you need to get it done. Turn off your email notifications and put aside your phone. It makes it easier to plan your day and minimizes distractions.

6. Over-communicate expectations. With many schools out of session and companies encouraging remote work, you may be in a unique situation sharing your work environment. If you share your space, make sure to manage expectations on the front end- with your kids, your spouse—and yes, even your pets!

7. Take breaks. I learned from my friend and author Daniel Pink that breaks are restorative. Some telecommuters struggle to build in breaks, but all the research indicates breaks make you more productive. Schedule times for breaks throughout the day like a quick walk outside or coffee break.


The Molly Fletcher Company inspires leaders, teams and organizations to kick-start growth. Molly draws on her decades of experience working as a sports agent. Her company’s Game Changer Negotiation Training workshops teach business people the framework for successful negotiating so that you can close more deals while building stronger relationships.

Book Molly for your event at https://premierespeakers.com/molly_fletcher.

Originally posted at The Molly Fletcher Company

Molly Fletcher

Want Molly Fletcher for your next event?

Find out more information, including fees and availability.
Find Out More
Keep Reading
7 Practical Tips to Work (and Lead) Remotely
Molly Fletcher
Molly Fletcher
March 17, 2020
If you are like many people, you may not be reading this week's blog from your office. As ...
My Letter To Every Girl Who Plays Sports—and her Parents
Molly Fletcher
Molly Fletcher
February 04, 2020
I see you running your heart out on the field and court,your braids bobbing, your ...
Molly Fletcher- The Female Jerry Maguire- Beyond Speaking Podcast
Molly Fletcher
Molly Fletcher
June 25, 2019
Molly Fletcher is impressive.She's a great negotiator, a skill she ...
7 Practical Tips to Work (and Lead) Remotely
If you are like many people, you may not be reading this week's blog from your office. As COVID-19 spreads, most employers are encouraging their people to work from home for an indefinite period of time. That shift can be overwhelming and even frustrating. You are probably wondering how to work and communicate effectively. As a leader, you fac...
Read More
My Letter To Every Girl Who Plays Sports—and her Parents
I see you running your heart out on the field and court,your braids bobbing, your face all kinds of determined to win. You love to play and win, and each time gives you a reason to stick with your sport. That's your competitive heart-the desire to be the best. And I see your parents on the sidelines, pulling for you so hard, and sometimes the pr...
Read More
Molly Fletcher- The Female Jerry Maguire- Beyond Speaking Podcast
Molly Fletcher is impressive.She's a great negotiator, a skill she learned from her family.I really enjoyed hearing how Molly Fletchertakes a different viewpoint than the normal person.When I got my first apartment andlike an idiot, Ijust hunted for pricing, location, and amenities. Molly took the same thing turned it into years of free rent, a ...
Read More