What You Need to Know to Effectively Run Your Business Remotely

What You Need to Know to Effectively Run Your Business Remotely


What You Need to Know to Effectively Run Your Business Remotely
John Hernandez
Written by John Hernandez
04/16/2020
5m
Virtual Business

Businesses are increasingly transitioning all or part of their workforce to remote. According to the Federal Reserve, work-from-home jobs have tripled within the last 15 years. And it’s not slowing down. Business executives and leaders are seeing the benefits it has on their employees and the cost-saving measures that come with it.

According to Global Workplace Analytics, it is very likely that you or your team want to work remotely. 80% of workers report wanting to work remotely at least part of their time. If it benefits your business and increases morale (lowering turnover), why not transition more of your business to remote?

Benefits of Running Part or All of Your Business Remotely

  • Increased Productivity

    • 85% of businesses report better productivity. This produces more efficient output from your business.
  • Better Results

    • When productivity goes up, so does performance. Remote workers produce better results for your business.
  • Increased Profits

    • Workers save on average $4,000 on commuting and other costs to get to the office. On average, a business can save around $11,000 per employee by going remote. This, along with increased results, increases your profit.
  • Higher Engagement

    • Remote workers are 29% happier than on-site workers, at a total of 71% happy. This increases engagement, initiative, and innovation for your business.
  • Decreased Turnover

  • Larger Talent Pool

    • When your business transitions to remote work, you multiply your talent pool and open it up for the world. Qualified talent is hard to find and it is tempting to settle for talent that doesn’t meet your needs. When you are a remote business, you have access to the right talent all over the world.

Remote work has many opportunities for your business. But if you don't pay attention to the right things, you could move backward instead. To take advantage of remote businesses, it's important to know the steps to take to make it possible.

Here are some things you need to know to effectively run your business remotely.

Communication Is Priority

It is true in relationships just as much as businesses. Communication is everything. When you are operating your business remotely, you do not have the advantage of seeing your team face-to-face all afternoon. When you lack communication, you breed low morale, confusion, low engagement, and performance.

Thankfully, the tech business has worked hard for years to develop ways for businesses to communicate from all over the world. There are many tools that businesses can use for video conferencing, interactive project management, shared files, chatting per department, and more.

A remote business should develop strategies where short video meetings are executed on a consistent and often basis for great communication. Slack is also a great tool to use to chat and share files between departments.

When a remote business creates a strong foundation for communication, they set themselves up for success.

Leverage the Right Tools

When it comes to productivity, communication and developing your remote business, the right tools mean everything.

There are many apps for productivity that allow your team to plan and execute projects in real-time. This usually involves working in the cloud. When a team member makes a change, you see it right away. Tools like Evernote, Asana, G Suite, and more, allow you to operate a business from wherever you are.

When you are developing your remote business, there are a lot of online solutions for you. You might be wondering if a supplier or fulfillment company is the right choice. Or if you should take on a new employee or find a freelancer. All these things can be difficult to decide when you are alone in a remote office. When you use tools like Profit Frog, you can use the virtual simulator and see if it is a profitable solution for your company.

When you use the right tools, you position your business for success while utilizing the benefits of remote operations.

Hire the Right People

We all know this one. In most businesses, it’s far better to hire slow than it is to hire fast and get stuck with the wrong people. Hiring slow increases your chances for a qualified employee and required soft skills. Hiring fast is like shooting a dart in the dark, and if you fire often, it will quickly lower morale and raise costs for your business.

When a company chooses to operate remotely, this is even more important, and it's also essential for additional reasons. Not only do you want to hire the right person, but you want to make sure their communication skills and ability to meet deadlines are above par. They will be required to show high levels of discipline on their own without face-to-face accountability.

Evaluate your candidate's accomplishments and see if they can do things on their own with excellence. Can they motivate themselves even when they are at a low point? During their biggest failure, did they do anything to make the best of the situation or learn from it? What drives them and makes them passionate?

Hire the right people for their skills but even more for their emotional intelligence. Make sure they are good with technology because no matter what industry you are in, going remote will infuse your business in the tech world.

Develop Accountability

Since you and your team are remote, it is important to be very clear on what success and failure look like. This means laying out exactly what your goals are, who should do each job, and when it should be done. By developing effective meetings and accountability measures, you can ensure each team member knows what he/she needs to do.

The best way is to build accountability within your business naturally. When you become results-oriented, team members are accountable.

Except for hourly service roles like customer success that demands consistent attention, let go of hours worked and adopt value-based results. If a team member fails to reach a certain number of sales, work done, etc., then they are held accountable. This removes wasting time at home and promotes performance and productivity.

Store Data in the Cloud

The last thing you want for your business is sharing a static excel file back and forth and trying to keep up with the latest update. Today, there are many options for cloud solutions. Putting all your documents, projects and business files in the cloud establishes an "HQ" for your office no matter where you and your team are located.

When you share on the cloud, your team can access everything from wherever and on whatever device. Not only is your essential documents accessible, but you can also edit and update files instantly so that your team can see it and get the latest information.

Establishing your business on the cloud is an essential step to thriving as a remote company.

Encourage Everyone, All the Time

One common negative concern that goes on in remote work is the higher rate of loneliness. While this might seem like a problem, it is entirely avoidable. It requires very intentional processes and steps to develop a culture that is full of community and encouragement. When it comes to remote businesses, any affirmation (or all communication for that matter) should be said double what you would normally say in person.

There are multiple forms of loneliness. It’s not just social. Here are some ways you can create a thriving and friendly culture.

  • Provide the Right Resources

    • Make information readily available on the cloud. Keep your entire team in the loop and make sure everyone knows what is going on in the business as a whole.
  • Create Opportunities

    • Create ways people can grow in the business through measurable ways of improvement and promotion. Show that they aren’t stuck at home and that they have a future in your company.
  • Develop Your Team

    • Whether it is one-on-one meetings or other forms of video conferences, make sure to create a consistent plan on developing and growing each team member. If they are growing, they will want to work for your business longer and provide better results.
  • Establish Community

    • Humans are social beings. Find ways to encourage more community. Schedule a video meeting regularly that is all about sharing positive things about each other personally and professionally in the business.

When you create a social, fun environment that creates a community for your business, you can expect a happy team and increased performance.

These are some things to consider when operating your business remotely. Follow them to maximize your company and increase efficiency. Transitioning your entire or part of your business remotely can come with many advantages. When you use this article to create a strong foundation for your business, you position yourself and your team for growth.

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