We’ve been writing and publishing Buffer’s State of Distant Work report for six years now, and we’ve discovered loads concerning the traits, advantages, and struggles of distant employees alongside the way in which. This 12 months, after releasing the report, we had a number of folks remark that they questioned what the outcomes can be like for less than people who find themselves managers — and it’s an excellent query!
We weren’t clear sufficient when publishing the report that the State of Distant Work already contains folks managers and distant work leaders. Nonetheless, it felt like a chance to dive deeper into the info to tug out extra information particular to leaders.
Whereas we didn’t ask if somebody was a folks supervisor after they accomplished the State of Distant Work survey (don’t fear, it’s already on the record for subsequent 12 months), we did ask concerning the form of function that somebody has, and one possibility was “management.” So, right here’s what we discovered wanting on the outcomes from the State of Distant Work and evaluating those that work in management to those that don’t — the solutions may shock you.
Leaders nonetheless overwhelmingly need to work remotely
To start out, leaders nonetheless need to work remotely for the remainder of their careers (99 p.c chosen this feature) and would suggest distant work to others (one other 99 p.c chosen this feature). That is solely barely larger than non-leaders, who have been at 98 p.c for each questions. Finally, no massive distinction between leaders and non-leaders right here.
We additionally requested respondents to explain their expertise with distant work — and apparently, leaders have been extra more likely to choose that that they had a optimistic expertise. Ninety-six p.c of leaders chosen that their expertise was very optimistic or considerably optimistic in comparison with 90 p.c of non-leaders.
The distinction between how leaders and non-leaders expertise distant work is not drastic, although leaders usually tend to have a optimistic expertise than non-leaders.
Leaders do work in another way
Relating to how distant leaders work, there are some variations between non-leaders and leaders who work remotely of their preferences for working in a hybrid setup, their work location, and being on digital camera.
The largest distinction is that whereas leaders nonetheless primarily choose working totally remotely (65 p.c chosen totally distant as their most well-liked work construction), there’s a better quantity who would like a hybrid however distant first arrange, with 27 p.c of leaders choosing that possibility in comparison with 20 p.c of non-leaders.
Leaders are additionally extra more likely to have expertise with the hybrid setup. Forty-two p.c of leaders labored in a hybrid setup in comparison with 35 p.c of non-leaders.
Equally, leaders have been much less more likely to work at home than non-leaders, although the bulk nonetheless did; 75 p.c of leaders chosen they labored from residence in comparison with 83 p.c of non-leaders.
The ultimate query we checked out was about being on digital camera — 76 p.c of leaders choose to have their digital camera on for video calls in comparison with 62 p.c of non-leaders.
General, the responses from leaders have been pretty much like non-leaders right here, however with sufficient variation that it’s clear there’s a distinction between how these two teams get work carried out.
The struggles of distant leaders
Regardless of the numerous advantages of distant work, leaders nonetheless face the identical struggles as non-leaders, with a couple of variations.
The dearth of construction and routine that comes with distant work is usually a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it permits for better flexibility and autonomy. However, it may be simple to develop into remoted. This can be a battle that many distant employees share, and leaders are not any exception. The highest battle for distant employees was the identical for each leaders and non-leaders — staying residence too actually because they don’t have a purpose to depart.
One other problem that distant leaders face is the temptation to work outdoors of conventional workplace hours. With out the constraints of a bodily workplace, it may be simple to let work bleed into different elements of life, which might result in burnout and an absence of work-life stability. Leaders, particularly, usually tend to fall into this lure than non-leaders.
The ultimate battle that many leaders face is creating boundaries between work and life. In comparison with non-leaders, leaders usually tend to discover it troublesome to separate the 2, with 40 p.c of leaders scuffling with this in comparison with 30 p.c of non-leaders.
Although the highest battle stays the identical, leaders total usually tend to discover it difficult to disconnect from work and to work outdoors of normal hours.
Leaders are extra impartial on careers and distant work
Over the previous couple of years, the subject of profession development for distant employees has surfaced many instances, with some questioning if the transfer to distant work may negatively influence their profession trajectory. The subject of distant profession development remains to be considerably cut up. In our 2023 State of Distant Work report, respondents have been more likely to pick out that profession development was simpler whereas working remotely than the prior 12 months, with 36 p.c of respondents choosing that possibility. One other 36 p.c mentioned distant work had no influence on their profession development.
Leaders fall into the class of being extra impartial concerning the influence of distant work on profession development. Forty-two p.c of leaders imagine that distant work has no influence on profession development in comparison with 36 p.c of non-leaders. Leaders are additionally extra more likely to say that distant work has no influence on promotions (58 p.c chosen this) in comparison with non-leaders (56 p.c).
On the identical time, distant work as a requirement for future roles is much less essential to leaders than to non-leaders, which is in keeping with leaders being extra doubtless to decide on hybrid choices. General, leaders have a extra nuanced stance towards distant work in the case of profession development and the significance of distant work for his or her subsequent function.
What’s going nicely for distant leaders
The panorama of distant work is completely different for leaders in the case of what goes nicely for them, too. Leaders are barely extra more likely to be considerably or very engaged with their job — 65 p.c of them chosen this feature in comparison with 58 p.c of non-leaders. Leaders are additionally much less more likely to be searching for a brand new job.
Associated to feeling engaged of their roles, leaders additionally really feel barely extra linked to their colleagues (80 p.c in comparison with 75 p.c of non-leaders). A part of that could possibly be that leaders are additionally extra more likely to have attended in-person work occasions up to now 12 months. Seventy-seven p.c of leaders chosen that they had met up in individual for work in comparison with 69 p.c of non-leaders.
General, not all leaders need folks again within the workplace, though leaders usually tend to need a hybrid setup.
Leaders have some very particular distant work struggles round boundaries. On the identical time, they must be conscious that due to their place, they may really feel extra linked than their direct studies or non-leader colleagues.
We’d love to listen to from you in case you’re a folks supervisor and you’re employed remotely — does this resonate? Ship us a tweet!