Welcome to The Entrepreneur’s Corner. If you’re new here, what we do is get you the relevant tips—from experts with real world experience—in order to help you keep your business profitable. Whether you’re a seasoned business person, or just thinking about starting out as an entrepreneur, there’s something that you can learn.
This week’s installment, courtesy of Africa Skills Hub, brings you business tips from Ms Fadila A Ahmad. Fadila is a strategic business consultant who helps organisations grow and scale. Over the past year, she has doubled as a remote work consultant; helping organisations, as well individuals who want to transition into remote work, do so profitably.
What Fadila is sharing her expertise on with us today, is building a remote-first or a remote-friendly business. That includes how to scale your business into a profitable remote company in Ghana.
There are two types of remote work businesses, that’s fully remote and hybrid businesses.
Before we get into the tips—there are two aspects of remote work. The first is the ability to offer a product or service remotely without the customer having to come to a physical place of business. The second, is the ability of a company to recruit, hire and work with professionals from all over the world without regard for geographical location.
Now, let’s get into the tips.
Remote Work Doesn’t Always Mean Going Digital
Going digital is an advantage when it comes to transitioning into a remote working arrangement for your business, but the two do not mean the same thing.
Is it possible to provide your products and service remotely if you haven’t gone digital? Well, according to Fadila Ahmad, it is. As a business owner herself, she has been running her business remotely for the past 3 years without the company being necessarily digital.
Questions You Need To ask Yourself Before You Go Remote
The COVID-19 virus was the catalyst for the shift of businesses from physical operations to remote work. But as a business owner, the decision to go remote still lies with you. Therefore, there are certain questions you need to ask—certain things you need to clarify before you go remote. questions are:
Q: Does Going Remote Align With Your Vision Of The Future For Your Product, Team, Community And Company Culture?
Some people want to build more traditional organisations with traditional worker interactions. Other companies want to build organisations that don’t care as much about physical location as they do efficiency, productivity and empowering workers.
Q: Does Remote Work Align With Your Values And Principles?
Are you focused on flexibility and openness for your business? Do you value equal opportunity for all? Are you more oriented towards productivity or presence?
Q: Is This Something That You Want Your Product And Organisation To Achieve?
Do you want your organization to be a virtual organization or not? Can you imagine a remote arrangement for your product an services?
Advantages Of Going Remote
- For Individuals, you save money on corporate attire, commuting to and from the office and some other miscellaneous costs that arise when you are not working remotely.
- For companies, there are cost savings on real estate (physical premises for the company), you avoid utility costs, maintenance costs and other infrastructure related costs
Mental Health Benefits
- For Individuals, you you avoid all the mental stress that comes with every Monday. And, in addition, you also get to focus on having a healthier diet and lifestyle.
- For companies, remote work means that you don’t have to micromanage your employees.
- For Individuals, working remotely gives you a more flexible work schedule. Additionally, it also allows you to choose the time and place that you work; as long as you”re meeting deadlines.
- For companies, working remotely gives you access to a wider pool of talent. And remote work means that that talent does not even have to be in the same country.
- Companies can truly invest in finding the very best talent so that they can deliver superior services to customers.
- For Individuals, working remotely gives you a better chance of acheiving the right work-life balance. However, that takes some effort, specifically setting boundaries when remote working.
- For companies, working remotely shows your employees your level of trust in them and helps support their work-life balance.
- For Individuals, working remotely forces you to increase personal accountability and responsibility. In addition, it allows you pursue further education/nurture side projects due to the time saved on commuting.
- For companies, working remotely has been shown to increase employee productivity.
The Cons Of Working Remotely
So, remote work certainly has some pluses. However, there are still some cons. With adequate preparation, though, those can be overcome. The cons of remote work include: poor communication, a lack of discipline by some employees who abuse the system, tracking times of availability and a lack of trust by clients and investors because of the remote nature of work.
You Have To Value Productivity Over PRESENCE. That Is Th Fundamental Principle Required For Remote Work.
—Ms Fadila A. Ahamad.
The Entrepreneur’s Corner is a weekly series that brings you business tips and insights from people with real-world business experience.
Source: Africa Skills Hub; Ms Fadila A. Ahmad