People Who Struggle with Remote Work

The Extroverts will Suffer

Since workplaces shut down leading to many office-based workers to embark on a new working norm at the start of the pandemic, many have been fretting about the extroverts. Just how would these people, who obtain their power from being around others, manage the isolation? Exactly how would they handle the long working day without watercooler talk and no physical interaction with colleagues?

Well, as it turns out, many extroverts are doing well. Surprised?

Extroversion nor Introversion are Predictors

A team of researchers from the University of Texas looked at roughly 700 employees every 2 weeks throughout the pandemic. They discovered that extroversion or introversion weren’t indications of whether a person can effectively function whilst working in isolation. However other variables were.

The researchers claimed they didn’t see a difference in both outcomes measured in regards to extroversion or introversion.

The scientists discovered two key signs which had the most impact on whether an individual could or could not cope well working from home over extended periods.

Agreeableness & Neuroticism

One was agreeableness. A trait frequently related to an individual’s proclivity towards maintaining positive connections, really sensing the emotions and sympathizing with others. These people are usually genuinely interested in other people’s challenges and more likely to just go with the flow. Highly agreeable people are extra comfortable adapting to new situations and less likely to get aggravated.

Neuroticism is the other trait.  In this context, these are individuals that are highly diligent and also independent, yet they get nervous as well as fearful under pressure. The scientists found these individuals had the most trouble adapting to full remote work.

One therapist who deals with individuals on conquering anxiety explained how sharing a common sense of self, and a toolbox of coping methods which help you through challenging times and  troublesome scenarios goes a long way in helping people get through such tough times. Conversely, if you are already suffering from psychological problem and lack the toolbox of skills to manage, it’s likely to be much more challenging to deal with regardless of whether you are the life of the party, prefer more alone or one-to-one time.

The Extroverts are Okay

As far as those outgoing spirits are concerned, they know they need to stay connected and will tend to go above and beyond to obtain those connections via fully utilizing new technologies at their disposal.

Challenges Faced by all Regardless of Personality Type

Some overall challenges that employees are feeling, despite personality type or characteristics, firstly is more time pressure. The lack of positive reinforcement, confirming that you have done great work because we are so used to gauging social feedback in an office or physical environment.  Being praised, or perhaps your manager leaving for the day is no longer present, so, it can be hard to determine whether you’re functioning sufficiently or fulfilling expectations.

It is, therefore, a good idea to set a time to regularly check in with your manager or for the manager to check in with each staff member to see how they are feeling and what problems they might be having so things can quickly be resolved prior to escalation which will only further stress either party out. There is no ‘perfect’ rule guaranteed to work which can be applied across all companies operating remote teams, so you need to experiment with ideas and management strategies to close in on the most effective solution.