Wednesday, February 1, 2023
Subscribe to Small Business Monthly
Small Business Monthly on Facebook Small Business Monthly on Twitter Small Business Monthly on LinkedIn

SBM Articles

 Search

Making Work-From-Home Work Harder For Your Business

by Steve Slais

While we continue to wait for things to get back to “normal” (whatever that means nowadays), many of us have been working remotely, at least in part, over the past couple of years. Unless your organization has been deemed as an essential business, such as grocery stores, pharmacies, medical supply stores, and moving services, you probably have experienced at least a hybrid schedule at some point.

At our marketing firm, we now work almost exclusively from our homes. While it was a necessary adjustment due to ongoing COVID considerations, we have discovered that we are collectively as productive (if not more so) as compared to our full-time, in-office days. Why? Things like no more scrambling to find meeting rooms when a quick video call will do, no more sitting in traffic on the morning and afternoon commutes, and more time to enjoy a work/life balance. Our clients agree that we have not missed a beat.

Remote Workforce Advantages
One thing that became apparent as we “had” to shift into this model that actually allowed remote working to succeed, was that because it was “forced” on us all – service companies like ourselves AND clients – I noticed the stress of using new technology seemed to dissipate. Clients were more understanding if there was a technology glitch – it was okay. We were all figuring it out together. We ALL had to learn how to communicate with each other remotely. As time went by, we all got better and better at it.

However, if you own or operate a small business that has work-from-home opportunities but may still feel uncomfortable with this as a long-term proposition, let’s explore how you can use your remote workforce to the advantage of your business, clients, and employees.

One thing we’ve learned from embracing a remote work environment is that you’re not losing access to your employees. Although you are not physically together, we have discovered that we’re able to stay in close touch via communications resources like Slack for quick and ongoing conversations and Zoom for more structured meetings with team members and/or with clients.

We’ve found it also helpful to schedule all-team virtual check-in meetings during the week so everyone can discuss their work assignments, and make sure everything is on track. As a smaller firm and tight-knit group, a bonus aspect of this is that we also have a few minutes to ask about each other’s families and continue to have some fun “office banter” that is sometimes missing in the virtual environment.

We see people as our greatest asset, and it’s also nice to see the work/life balance that has developed over this time. Our team is highly responsible and makes sure all tasks are consistently completed on time and in a high-quality manner. In exchange, each employee has the freedom to do things like pick up children from school, run quick errands, and do other personal tasks they might not have time to do in the traditional workplace. Another way of looking at this is our team is not spending time commuting each day, and the time they save is put to good use personally – and professionally.

Especially when working remotely, having a talented team you trust is key. Our group has excelled in this atmosphere, and we have actually grown our business. Clients have responded to our fast turnaround times, and we typically meet more virtually with the companies we work with than we ever have in-person in the past. In fact, we’ve been able to expand our business while working remotely and have discovered that the virtual office makes it possible for you to recruit from a wide range of applicants, around the country and throughout the world.

While we still periodically meet at our office for team-building and client functions, working virtually will continue to be our focus moving forward. Our biggest realization is that no matter where and how you and your team are working, the same principles of business apply. Delivering results to your clients is paramount and offering your team members an enticing work/life balance means everyone wins. I guess you could say that it’s all remotely satisfying.

Steve Slais is Partner and Chief Creative Officer at Spoke Marketing. Spoke Marketing (www.spokemarketing.com) provides fully-integrated marketing and sales programs that define and activate the customer buyer journey.
 

Submitted 1 years 6 days ago
Tags:
Categories: categoryMarketing Works
Views: 1344
Print