If a new company in this day and age insists on holding onto the business practices of a mere two or three years ago even, that company risks getting left behind by its competitors. Yes, sometimes there is a serious advantage to holding onto business traditions that make your business what it is and give it exactly what it is that makes it unique, but I’m talking here about business practices such as how you handle your human resources and how you manage your staff.
If I’m to get even more specific — I’m particularly talking about hiring practices and the manner in which you allow you staff to work.
It’s not a myth or urban legend how the traditional corporate structure was housed in a sky-scraping building with windows that are cleaned at regular intervals and with the elevator’s ascend up the floors depicting a representation of the power hierarchy as it increases the further up you go. The CEO did indeed have that top-floor pent-house type of office with perhaps a special boardroom on the same floor reserved only for a meeting between the board of directors. That’s how it used to be and rather shockingly, that’s how it still is with some organisations that feel as if they don’t want to tamper with a system that’s worked for them for a good few years or even decades.
Times are Changing
Things are changing however. Some of the most talented workers now come in the form of freelancers, some of whom are perhaps even full-time workers, but prefer to work remotely. There used to be a time for example when you’d have an entire company housing permanently employed Word Processors, all of whom would be earning a full-time salary with all the permanent employee benefits that come with that position.
These days however you can collaborate with a copywriter from a totally different time zone and continent maybe, while you’re operating a business which would rival or even surpass those typical corporate structures of years gone by. That’s what it takes to set up an efficient remote workforce and in fact to set up an efficient workforce, period!
New Aproach to Employment
You have to be flexible and be willing to work remotely with people from all over the world, but it often needs to be approached with the view that a remote worker added to your team is one who was already operating as a remote worker, whether as a freelancer looking for more stable work or as a full-time remote worker who is looking for their next gig. You can’t really turn an existing full-time in-house staff member into a remote worker. In my experience it has to come from the employee themselves — they have to ask if it would perhaps be possible to work remotely, otherwise not all employees have the discipline to maintain the type of diligence which would see them delivering their work professionally and within set deadlines should they be working remotely.
In the same way that instituting a salary raise generally has to come from the employee as a request (unless of course they’re really long overdue for one), remote workers are wired that way and full-time, in-house staff members also have their place.
Constant communication is the key to making it work, which of course means reliable internet and reliable channels over which to deliver briefs and deliver completed work.