Over the span of eleven-years I have personally worked completely remotely and have a fair bit of experience to reflect on, especially taking my last two-years with E-Accent BV into consideration.
Even today, many business owners are not completely convinced that working remotely is effective. Even Satya Nadella of Microsoft feels this way, which is rather ironic given they are behind "Teams". My answer to this is simply because they are not doing Remote right.
There cannot be a disconnect in goals, culture and vision when working remotely, and most importantly the stakeholder(s) and product-owner(s) need to have a shared commitment to working remotely. This is not something you can take up on a whim, but takes a fair bit of dedication and preparation to execute effectively.
Planning & Preparation
Let's assume we have a product owner "Tom" and he has a small team of devs working for him. As the product owner, he is the single interface between the client and the dev team; the dev team cannot (and in most cases, the business owners would prefer) contact the client directly.
Now, for a larger organisation where they are the client, this makes the task far easier given the ownership of the "product" itself can be handled by a separate team.
In the single-owner scenario though, the burden of work falls onto a single person and they have to juggle a lot of hats and it can become a huge amount of work, and quite stressful too.
Trust is key to fostering motivation and ownership
When you interview new staff make sure that you're keen to build trust over the long term and that you do not want to micromanage everything. You can of course higher a project manager to perform this task. However, the key takeaway here is that team members need to take ownership for any code they touch.
Ideally, say I'm joining an existing team and starting on a codebase that's new (to me) - and I come across some `randomController.js` file. Suppose, i'm only there to change a constant or something, but I should spend a few minutes to just go through it and if I spot any obvious issues, to clean things up. Technical debt is a separate topic, but I thought I should at least point this out.
TBD - more to come.