Skip navigation

Employees

2 Posts authored by: Joel Comm

When you’re looking to build your workforce, you want to hire the best people you can find. The greater the talent you can recruit, the more you’ll get for your earnings and the filip-bunkens-MfA21vhkVLg-unsplash.jpgfaster your business will grow.

 

But that search used to come with a powerful limit: you could only hire the best people you could find within a small area near your office. A software developer with exactly the experience you need or a copywriter with a style that’s perfect for your business is of no use if they’re a long commute away. Relocation is expensive and risky.

That means you’re fishing in a small pond—and if that pond is a long way from cities or creative hubs, it might not contain the fish you need.

The solution has come in the form of remote work. When a team member needs nothing more than a computer and an Internet connection to perform their tasks and submit their work, they don’t need to be in an office down the hall. They can be on the other side of the country, or even in a different country altogether, and still provide the benefits of their skill and talent.

 

According to one study, remote working has grown by 44 percent over the last five years. Around 4.3 million people in the U.S. work from home at least half the time, and 76 percent of respondents said that they wanted to telecommute all the time. Remote workers get a flexible schedule and save commuting time; companies get to hire the best people anywhere in the world and enjoy a 25 percent lower turnover.

 

But remote working isn’t like a more typical in-office environment. The work is performed without a boss present to check work or answer questions. There are no watercooler chats or colleagues to bounce ideas off. And the work hours are whatever the team member wants to create to suit their lifestyle.

 

Find the Right People

 

The first challenge in building a remote team is hiring the right people.

 

Remote workers need the right skills you’re looking for to complete their tasks but they also need to self-manage. They need to be self-motivated, responsible and dedicated. They need to have the mindset of entrepreneurs running their own businesses, even when that business only has one customer and pays them a salary.

 

That’s why a trial period is important to make sure not just that they can do the job but that they can be relied upon to do it—and to do it on time consistently and to be available for communications.

 

Agree on Collaboration Tools

 

As the team grows, you’ll also need to decide how you’re going to work together. Every office is different, and every worker has their own preference. Some might prefer to use Word, others Google Docs. Some might be used to uploading their files to Dropbox, others to Microsoft’s OneDrive.

 

Lisette Sutherland, author of Work Together Anywhere: A Handbook on Working Remotely—Successfully—for Individuals, Teams, and Managers, recommends giving each remote team member an agreement that lists the tools they prefer to use for each type of work and asking how they like to communicate. Team members can say whether they prefer to send quick messages through a chat application like Slack or just use email. They can state how quickly they tend to reply and how often they like to set up a video conference, and which video conferencing software they prefer to use.

 

Each team member will have their preference so it will then be up to the team leader or the employer to review their suggestions and lay out the rules everyone will follow. No one will end up with all their preferences but everyone will understand how the team will work together.

 

You can also set up times to meet in person. Few things help more to bond a long-term team than the ability to occasionally get together and swap ideas. Even if it only happens once or twice a year at a conference, those meetings can help to smooth out work for the year ahead.

 

A remote team is now too valuable a benefit to reject because it’s untraditional. Businesses as large as Basecamp, Automattic, and MySQL are now entirely virtual or close to it. It works, and it means that you can build a successful business with the best team even if you live somewhere remote.

 

About Joel Comm

 

As an Internet pioneer, Joel has been creating profitable websites, software, products, and helping entrepreneurs succeed since 1995. He has Screen+Shot+2019-02-08+at+9.16.44+AM.pngbeen at the frontlines of live video online since 2008 and has a deep expertise in using tools such as Facebook Live, Periscope, Instagram or Snapchat to broadcast a clearly defined message to a receptive audience or leveraging the power of webinar and meeting technologies.

 

Joel is a New York Times best-selling author of 15 books, including “The AdSense Code,” “Click Here to Order: Stories from the World’s Most Successful Entrepreneurs,” “KaChing: How to Run an Online Business that Pays and Pays and Twitter Power 3.0.” He is Co-Host of The Bad Crypto Podcast one of the top crypto-related shows in the world and has spoken before thousands of people around the world and seeks to inspire, equip and entertain.

 

Web: https://joelcomm.com/ or Twitter: @JoelComm

Read more from Joel Comm

 

Bank of America, N.A. engages with Joel Comm to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Joel Comm is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Joel Comm. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.

For any kind of business, the best kind of marketing is word-of-mouth. You want your company to be the subject of conversations. You want people to talk about what you’re doing, what you’re selling and how you’re selling it. The more people hear about you, the more people will buy from you.

allgo-an-app-for-plus-size-people-NWtx_Xe9bjw-unsplash.jpg

Best of all, you have an army of people who have a deep understanding of your business. They like your business… and they each have an untapped audience that would like to know more about your company.

 

According to research by LinkedIn, a typical company’s employees have a network ten times larger than the firm’s social media follower base. LinkedIn found that when businesses ask their employees to share job openings on social media, companies see 30 percent more job applications, and the applicants who arrive through a friend’s recommendation have a 37 percent lower initial attrition rate.

 

Tapping into that network doesn’t just bring better recruits. It can also bring more sales and greater brand recognition. It’s a way to communicate your company’s identity and message to a whole new audience through passionate storytellers who know your company best.

 

To make use of that army of advocates, you’ll need to take three steps:

 

1. Prepare Your Message

 

Urging your employees to talk about work on social media will mean taking a risk. You won’t be able to check every post before it goes out or monitor every conversation that takes place. Micromanaging posts will reduce participation and lower authenticity. You’ll need to trust your workforce to communicate the messages you want to broadcast while still allowing them to be their authentic selves.

 

Before encouraging your staff to advocate on your company’s behalf, draw up guidelines. List your company values. Provide examples of stories that they could share. Make clear that there are some topics—such as customer data or complaints—they shouldn’t discuss. There may even be compliance or legal issues that restrict what people can say. Your employees should be aware of them.

 

Give your team plenty of latitude so that they can have fun, display personality and talk about the things they want to discuss. But do take the time to build a framework so that the conversations they’re having are positive, inviting, and always show the company in a good light.

 

2. Encourage Participation

 

Your company will benefit when your employees are advocating your business to their social media audiences. The employees also benefit by entertaining their followers with fun stories and interesting content. But their rewards should be bigger than that.

 

That doesn’t have to mean compensating employees directly for social content and engagement. Paying employees to be advocates risks authenticity. The best social media content always comes from individuals saying what’s on their minds rather than from professional PR people saying what they’re being paid to repeat.

 

But you can certainly incentivize them through programs like awarding a prize to the employee who lands the highest number of shares or who posts the most content each month. You can also point out that discussing their work on their social media streams can be a path into professional social media work, a channel that you can promote with coaching that benefits both your business and your employees. And you can remind your team that engaging on social media, sharing content, and talking about the issues they encounter in their work builds their own credibility. When they’re thinking professional thoughts aloud online, they look like experts.

 

3. Measure the Results

 

Finally, you should be measuring the results. You should monitor the number of posts your team makes, and the number of shares and likes they receive. Above all, check the impact the content has on your business. You should find that as conversations spread, you see a growth in the number of newsletter subscriptions, more hits on your website, and more orders. Surveys should show a greater degree of brand recognition so that when you launch or offer a new product, you pick up more interest and more sales.

 

Those measures shouldn’t be the only reason you urge your employees to become advocates. A general, positive impression of your business is hard to measure even though it’s still worth having. But it is rewarding to seeing how that advocacy is affecting your bottom line.

 

Your employee networks are a huge, untapped resource. They’re a path towards greater brand recognition and exponential growth. Tapping that resource will take a little training and a lot of trust. But it can bring huge rewards for you, your company, your employees—and your new customers.

 

About Joel Comm

 

As an Internet pioneer, Joel has been creating profitable websites, software, products, and helping entrepreneurs succeed since 1995. He has Screen+Shot+2019-02-08+at+9.16.44+AM.pngbeen at the frontlines of live video online since 2008 and has a deep expertise in using tools such as Facebook Live, Periscope, Instagram or Snapchat to broadcast a clearly defined message to a receptive audience or leveraging the power of webinar and meeting technologies.

 

Joel is a New York Times best-selling author of 15 books, including “The AdSense Code,” “Click Here to Order: Stories from the World’s Most Successful Entrepreneurs,” “KaChing: How to Run an Online Business that Pays and Pays and Twitter Power 3.0.” He is Co-Host of The Bad Crypto Podcast one of the top crypto-related shows in the world and has spoken before thousands of people around the world and seeks to inspire, equip and entertain.

 

Web: https://joelcomm.com/ or Twitter: @JoelComm

Read more from Joel Comm

 

Bank of America, N.A. engages with Joel Comm to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Joel Comm is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Joel Comm. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.

Filter Article

By tag: