With the world becoming more interconnected through the internet; many business owners are embracing the concept of managing their companies remotely. The recent Coronavirus pandemic has exposed the demand for businesses to diversify or risk losing relevance.
While it’s true that any business can adapt to running remotely, it’s nonetheless very different from managing a traditional office. Handling a business remotely requires an entirely different approach. Here are some useful tips on how to run your business remotely, which can be beneficial in the long run:
1. Leverage on Technology.
Every business needs technology to thrive in today’s world. However, if you are considering running your business remotely, you need to grasp using technology even more than companies who operate from the traditional setup.
Using technology to your advantage can make management efficient and streamline operations for productivity. There are numerous tools these days that business owners can use to run their companies effectively remotely.
With technology, you can use zoom for meetings, conference calls, Dropbox and emails to share files, slack for better communication, use When I Work to make and keep a schedule, QuickBooks for accounting, and eSignature for signing documents online. With so many options to choose from, you can run your business entirely without being physically present.
One of the secrets to successfully running your business remotely is outsourcing. Outsource anything that isn’t essential to your business operations. This will make operations run faster and also encourage specialization. Outsourcing ensures that people who are specialized in a particular area get to handle fields that you are either not too good at or you can afford to let someone else work.
For instance, as a shoemaker business, you can outsource your logistics to a B2B partner, who ensures they deliver client orders, receives production materials from the manufacturers, and other activities that have to do with logistics. The ability to outsource operations is one of the surest ways to handle your business remotely.
3. Hire the Right Team.
Not everyone can work effectively remotely. Some people perform better in a conventional office, so you must hire only people who understand the demands of remote work and those who can thrive in it. It’s best to hire a team that shares the same values as your business.
Also, look out for self-motivated people who can work and problem-solve without requiring that much supervision. Once the right team is in place, establish a sort of work ethics system that can evaluate employees’ performance. That way, you can quickly identify those that are putting their best and be trusted with more responsibility.
Alternatively, you can also hire virtual assistants, if it’s a small business and you don’t need a lot of hands. Virtual assistants are just like personal assistants; the only difference is that they work remotely. It is possible to get virtual assistants from online platforms like Upwork and Fiverr. However, you may need some other things to ensure you hire the best ones. For instance, you can assess their performance by checking their reviews or asking for a few references.
4. Establish Order of Operations.
It is not enough to hire the right team; you also have set up an order of operation that is streamlined towards maximizing profit and productivity. Set up business systems that take care of different processes such as delivery, inventory, employees’ welfare, scheduling, etc. this ensures that your employees can follow a clearly defined system.
Although you are running your business remotely, it is not advisable to abandon the complete control of the company to your remote employees. When it involves sensitive issues like purchasing power and the total control of the business’s website, you need to retain control.
This isn’t about not trusting your employees; the parameters are for extra security and to protect your interests. Thanks to technology, you can establish a system that allows the smooth running of the business in your absence without giving all control.
5. Check-ins are Essential.
When running a business remotely, it’s easy to assume that everything is going smoothly if there are no occasional check-ins. You could be missing out on significant problems that can ruin your business. To effectively handle your business remotely, you need to establish a sound communication system. Thankfully, several apps make it easy to keep in touch with your team, even if you can’t be there physically.
As mentioned earlier, apps like slack and zoom can be used to boost communication and keep supervisors up to date. Nonetheless, it’s also advisable to show up occasionally and physically confirm that everything is running smoothly.
6. Prioritize Results, Not Activity.
It is easy to get sucked in monitoring what your employees are doing, forgetting that it is the results that matter. Instead, focus on achieving set goals per time instead of worrying about the activities. Remote businesses that are successful focus on achievements, not activities, and there’s no need to fuss if your remote workers are continuously smashing goals.
Besides, the output you receive can be used to access your team’s performance. So as a remote business owner, stop trying to manage all aspects of the team activities and encourage self-motivation and initiatives. This can boost productivity, especially in a remote working environment.
Handling your business remotely can be challenging, but it’s not impossible with the right information and tools. Remember that you don’t have to do everything yourself, hire virtual assistants, and with the right team, you can take anything on.
Also, make sure to get the right tools. Technology is the core of remote working, and by leveraging on it and the other tips above, you can run a successful business even when you are not physically around.