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How to land remote leadership roles online?

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Many professionals dream of going remote, seeking the flexibility of remote work to become a digital nomad, start a family, or simply have more freedom.

However, many worry that making the shift to remote work may mean losing career status.

The trends towards remote positions in recent years, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, mean that there is now a range of remote positions available, including executive-level remote jobs.

Online learning can be highly beneficial to anyone interested in a remote leadership position.


The shift to remote work and remote leadership

There is a perception that most remote jobs are either positions with low pay, or highly specialised roles within the tech sector. But this is simply not the case. 

Increasing numbers of businesses have been moving towards remote work in recent years, with many even going fully remote.

Remote work before the COVID-19 pandemic

According to the Annual Population Survey (APS), 1.7 million UK workers in 2019 worked mostly remotely (around 5% of the workforce) and a further 7 million workers worked from home at least part of the time. 

In the information and communication sector, 14.8% worked mainly from home in 2019, while 12.8% of employees in professional, scientific, and technical industries worked remotely.

These figures reflect how businesses in the UK and globally are discovering that remote workers are happier and more productive, as well as costing organisations less in terms of office space, infrastructure, and other expenses. 

We’ve even seen the emergence of companies that have completely eliminated the need for onsite work, relying on a 100% remote workforce, such as software companies Close.io and Zapier, and global marketing agency PartnerCentric.

How remote work has changed in 2020

At the beginning of 2020, there was already a range of remote roles available across many sectors, including executive jobs and remote leadership roles. 

The COVID-19 pandemic forced an acceleration of this process — lockdowns meant that many professionals needed to suddenly work from home. When it became clear that the pandemic would not be quickly overcome, organisations needed to find ways to continue to do business while keeping their workforce safe. 

Additionally, having discovered the benefits of remote work, many businesses now want to make this permanent.

A June 2020 survey showed that 82% of UK businesses planned to continue with remote working arrangements after lockdown. This has further increased the amount of remote work opportunities that are available. 

Furthermore, many businesses that were unprepared for this shift find themselves in need of qualified executive-level professionals who are willing to work remotely.

How to find executive-level remote jobs

The shift to working online due to lockdowns worldwide means there are many opportunities for remote jobs across many sectors, and at all levels, including executive positions. 

However, if you have never worked remotely, it can be difficult to know how to find these jobs. It is possible to achieve the flexibility and other benefits afforded by remote work without losing career status and while continuing to further your career.

In this case, you essentially have three options:

  • You can search for remote jobs at your current level. You will find a range of available positions at all levels, including senior management and executive-level jobs.
  • If remote jobs are uncommon in your sector, you can consider changing sectors and joining a fully remote organisation in another industry.  However, this will likely mean sacrificing your career level and climbing the ladder again.
  • You can further your career with online learning, thus boosting your skills for more senior positions, while moving your professional life online.

Online learning can open up more career opportunities by giving you a recognised qualification in your field, or another sector that has more remote positions. An online programme like EDHEC’s Msc in International Business Management gives you access to a high-quality education with the flexibility of online study.

How to leverage online learning to find remote work

A well-recognised online degree provides a valuable qualification that will make you an attractive candidate as you search for remote positions. Additionally, studying at a high-quality institution like EDHEC allows you to build and develop your network. This will open up new opportunities, and in an online learning environment people are more likely to be open to online opportunities.

One of the biggest advantages of online study is the flexibility — you are able to pursue online study from anywhere at any time, meaning you can work your study around other commitments.

This flexibility is helpful for anyone who is looking to transition to remote work while maintaining their career trajectory because:

  • You can take up an online course while continuing in your current job
  • It allows for a smooth transition, letting you switch from your current job to a remote position without pausing your studies
  • If you’re already remote, online study allows you to gain qualifications to further your career

Online study also develops a range of skills that will help you to be successful in transitioning to remote work. Online programmes require the use of certain tools and personal skills that are equally important when working remotely. 

For example, studying online helps you to develop the organisational skills and self-discipline needed when working remotely, as well as familiarising you with online conferencing and team management tools used by many remote organisations.

Final Thoughts

The workforce has evolved greatly in recent years. We’re seeing more and more remote work opportunities becoming available, including remote leadership positions and executive-level remote jobs. 

For professionals who want to enjoy the freedom of remote work without sacrificing their career trajectory, online learning is the perfect way to gain a valuable qualification, expand their network, and develop useful remote work skills. 

See our online programmes to find the course that will help you to secure your dream remote job!