I mean, other than avoiding pesky bosses or coworkers that don’t leave you alone.


Work at home. At a coffee shop or at a coworking space, when it’s safe to do so again. Even though those three places to do work differ a lot between themselves and we can talk about the differences they have in between them for a while, I wanted first to talk a bit about the differences between working at an office and working remotely, wherever it ends up happening.


Here are five criteria that are important to consider when thinking about the differences between working at an office and outside of it.

Remote work axes

To think about the criteria I like to use two axes, time and space.

In both axes we have in between states, like sharing some working hours, or being in the same space weekly, monthly, or yearly.

These axes create a wide spectrum of possibilities, from working all day in the same space to working without ever seeing each other and not even sharing working hours.

The axes of remote work

The closer we are to the smiley at the origin, the greater:

On the other hand, if we are closer to the heart far away from the origin, the better:

What is this good for?

The axes allow us to somewhat formalize the differences between remote and at-office work and be able to reason and think about jobs based on where they land on these axes. For example we can now ask questions about a job offer we get based on their characteristics. For example

We can also use the opposite strategy to detect red flags. A remote workplace that requires you to do strict work hours monitored by software would likely impact the work life balance, that’s a red flag you can be aware of now.

We are able to use this framework when making a job post or offer by making explicit how we attack the downsides of where we are on the remote work plane and thus letting candidates know that we explicitly think about the questions raised by how we work and answer them preemptively.

Finally, it can help you know where you would thrive more. Do you need belonging? Would you rather have better work life balance? Did the offer maker put you at ease with how they attack those problems for their circumstances and are they profiting from the benefits of their circumstances?