News & Insights

Embracing the Remote Revolution: Our Journey as a Remote-First Company

Labor Day Special: Celebrating a Work Culture That Knows No Boundaries

As we gather around the virtual breakroom on this Labor Day, we are thrilled to share the story of our unique work culture here at Connamara. Every day is a testament to the power of remote work, a culture we have embraced since our inception in 1998. As a company that thrives on innovation and adaptation, remote work has been a necessity and a strategic advantage that has propelled us forward.

Our Remote-First Philosophy: An Ongoing Success Story

While the world grappled with the shift to remote work in 2020, we were already well-equipped with a remote-first approach. As early adopters of this paradigm, we swiftly adapted our operations to the digital realm. This approach has allowed us to maintain seamless operations during unforeseen challenges and unlocked the full potential of our talented team members from all corners of the globe. 

At this point, Connamara has no plans to RTO (return to office) and celebrates our employees as they work from multiple continents, in different work setups (home and coworking spaces), and with flexible schedules based on their preferences and time zones. 

Tips for Mastering Remote Work Straight from Our Employees

Our Connamarians, the heart and soul of Connamara, have shared their invaluable insights on navigating the remote work landscape. These tips have helped them excel and contributed to the overall success of our remote-first philosophy. 

  1. Establish a Consistent Routine: Just like heading into the office, starting your day with a routine sets a productive tone. Get dressed for success, even if your commute involves just a few steps to your designated workspace.
  2. Or, Enjoy Comfort: One of the benefits of WFH is that it allows you to relax physically while working. If that means sweatpants, blankets, and the space heater on high, embrace it. In-office spaces with dress codes and cubicles rarely allow these creature comforts.
  3. Designate a Distinct Workspace: Create a dedicated workspace in your home that is solely reserved for work. This separation helps maintain focus and productivity.
  4. Communication Beyond Work: Keep the camaraderie alive by discussing non-work topics with your teammates on chat or Slack. A quick conversation about hobbies or interests fosters a sense of togetherness, even when miles apart.
  5. Choose Face-to-Face When Needed: Long email chains and messages can be efficient, but opt for a quick video call when discussions get complex. Visual communication bridges gaps and enhances understanding.
  6. Encourage Leadership to Have In-Person Summits: At Connamara, we aim for quarterly or bi-annual summits. It’s a great way to get face time and find common ground in person with your colleagues. This year, we had a Go Karting and Dinner event that accompanied a series of meetings best done in person. 
  7. Prioritize Ergonomics: Remember to consider the importance of a comfortable workspace. Invest in ergonomic accessories like keyboards, chairs, and mice to prevent discomfort or repetitive injury down the road.
  8. Tackle the Toughest Tasks First: By accomplishing the most challenging tasks early, you set the tone for a productive day and alleviate guilt if you need breaks later on.
  9. Invest in Quality Tools: Splurge on essential remote work tools like a good headset, ergonomic elbow or wrist rests, heaters or fans, and reliable speakers to enhance your work environment. At Connamara, we provide a one-time home office upgrade budget for new hires.
  10. Plan Your Day: Outline your daily goals and tasks to stay on track. Start every day by making a To Do list. Don’t hesitate to seek help if you encounter obstacles along the way.
  11. Foster Timely Communication: Use Slack or similar platforms to ask questions promptly without waiting for them to pile up. Timely communication leads to efficient collaboration.
  12. Roll with Technical Glitches: Internet disruptions are part and parcel of remote work. Stay adaptable and patient, knowing that these glitches are temporary. Communicate with your team when there are outages. 
  13. Become a Plant Parent: Plants, even artificial ones, do wonders for mental health. Plus, they look fantastic in video call backgrounds. 
  14. Take Breaks: Regular breaks rejuvenate the mind. Don’t hesitate to step away from your desk for a breather. Use breaks to tackle chores or phone a friend.
  15. Noise-Canceling Nirvana: Noise-canceling headphones are a lifesaver, especially in busy households. They help maintain focus amid distractions. Our team loves anything by Sony, as they are incredibly comfortable. 
  16. Lunchtime Liberation: Enjoy your lunch away from your workstation. Close the computer and break out a book, magazine, or podcast if you need to look at something. 
  17. Assume Positivity: Approach digital interactions with a positive mindset, assuming the best intentions from your colleagues. This fosters a healthy work atmosphere.
  18. Touch Grass: Incorporate short walks into your routine. Not only do they refresh your mind, but they also provide a dose of natural inspiration. 
  19. Footrest: Did you know that many office chairs do not provide the ideal height for your back? A footrest provides added lumbar support. 
  20. Get Really Into Your Beverages: When working in-office, you must accept whatever the fridge or ancient scaly coffee machine offers. At home, stock your fridge with your bespoke beverages. Invest in high-quality tea bags. And get a coffee maker routine that rivals the best baristas. 
  21. Be Prepared For Emergencies: We’re not talking about putting out work fires. We’re talking about actual fires. In an office, designated individuals take emergency preparedness training. But this is not a drill. Make sure your office setup has the necessary precautions should there be a disaster. That includes turning on phone alerts for earthquakes, floods, and fires. 
  22. Pet Your Pets: More face time with Fido means you can block out some quality time. Play fetch, get extra cuddles, and teach them tricks during breaks. 

As we take a moment this Labor Day to honor workers’ contributions worldwide, we also celebrate the Connamara family. A diverse, passionate, and remote workforce defies distance and exemplifies the boundless potential of modern work.

With a culture that transcends geographical constraints, Connamara continues to innovate, collaborate, and inspire, proving that remote work is not just a necessity but a transformative way of life. So, here’s to a Labor Day of reflection, connection, and a future where work knows no boundaries.

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