Employer Vs Employee: The Pros & Cons Of Remote Working

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Technology has been one of the biggest additions to the workplace, and even more so in the past fifteen years or so. The trends that are driving through the business world in technology has meant companies all over the world are able to develop in leaps and bounds. Cloud computing and the smartphone and tablet revolution that have boomed into business has really fueled the demand and the overall potential for remote working. It’s been a concept that most people have wanted to be involved in for a long time – the idea of missing out on that early morning commute and working to their own pace is very attractive. The thing is, until recently companies haven’t been able to offer remote working as an option. Technology has changed this fact, and it’s now anticipated that by 2022, 60% of all office workers will be working remotely.

Seeing as companies no longer have a limit to their ability to communicate with their employees off site, business owners are now factoring in remote working as a benefit when they go through the hiring process for new employees. Being able to offer something as lucrative as remote working is good for a business, as it means that they are able to offer something that their competitors may not. Flexible working for an employee is a luxury, but it’s one that can allow for time spent with family, attending appointments and a saving on the commute as they no longer have to travel into the office on a daily basis. The freedom to complete tasks, meet deadlines and finish a day of work in the time given without having to stay late to the office is an attractive prospect for anyone, but can a business maintain remote workers as well as those in the office?

There are a lot of advantages and disadvantages to remote working. If you apply for a role that offers you the opportunity to work from home either most or all of the time, you’re going to feel far more inclined to work hard. If you are the employer offering remote working, you have to consider the benefits from your side of it. We’ve put together both the advantages and disadvantages of remote working from the point of view of a business and as an employee. You be the judge.

Employer

As a business, you want to stand out in your field and not just for the customers. Your company needs to be a force of nature in the industry you are in and if you are offering jobs to the public, you need to be able to offer something more than the rest of the companies in your field. Remote working is something you should be looking at seriously, as cutting out that morning commute for your staff can be more than just a time and salary saver – it’s a morale booster. There are plenty of programs like the ones you can see here that offer you the ability to communicate with your staff outside of the office no matter where they are. There are plenty of studies, such as this article, that can tell you that your employees can be far more productive whilst working in an environment that they are familiar with compared to being forced to sit at a desk in the office all day! This then leads to happier people who are more willing to work hard for you, and will therefore hit their targets.

Thanks to technology, you can be connected to people via video chat, shared platforms like Trello and instant messenger all day long. This means that you can be just as in touch with your people outside the office as you would if they were working across from you. The best bit about technology being advanced enough to support remote working, is that your business is about to save a lot of money on its overheads. If you have an entire office of people working from home, your office overheads are pretty much eradicated. You’d also not have to pay for office supplies. The good thing here is that your business can swap the expenses for the rent, on to proper cybersecurity with companies like www.Difenda.com/services. One of the biggest concerns for any business is their IT security and remote working can pose a little more of a risk than initially anticipated. However, with the right plan and company in place, you can ensure that your remote workers can stay secure on the right platforms for work that you provide. As long as they have a secure internet connection when they work on the platform that you provide for them, they should find very little in the way of difficulty with security.

Ultimately, you have to decide whether remote working would work for you as a business, and for the most part company owners are seeing the benefits far more than the disadvantages of employing remote workers for their businesses. It’s always better to have a dedicated workforce who work in a relaxed environment of their choice – they are far less likely to quit!

Employee

When you start applying for work, you’re very likely to zone in on the benefits of the job on offer before you even look at the tasks required of you. It may seem shallow, but it’s very common for employees to check out the salary and the pension scheme before checking the job. You have to ensure that the working conditions of a role are good for you, and if you are going to be contracted to work in an office 9-5 with a two hour commute each way, it’s likely going to be detrimental to your family and your life outside the office. This is where remote working would be extremely attractive to you. Being able to work at your pace, in a home office you can feel far more relaxed in? That’s just good sense! You’ll love the flexibility that remote working can offer, especially if you have a family at home. Those school plays and fairs that you may have missed out on in the past won’t have to keep happening like that, as you can choose to take the time out of your day to attend events.

For the most part, companies that offer you the chance to work from home will not mind when you do your daily workload, as long as it’s done that very day. So, by condensing your working day into the morning you are freeing up your time in the afternoon for other, often more desirable, activities. Working from home is also a personal challenge for you, as you get to see whether you have the motivation to stick at your usual tasks without the management team breathing down your neck. The skills in discipline that you can learn are invaluable and something that you can take with you through any role. The salary that you clocked earlier while looking at the benefits of the role you’re going to apply for should be an attractive one, but what’s even more enticing is the fact that you don’t have to spend any of it on public transport or petrol costs. Commuting isn’t just exhausting, it’s a financial drain, especially if you are living far from the office you would have been working in. You also won’t have that additional $10-20 a day being spent on coffees from the local coffee cart or the lunches from the deli. All these little savings that you make each day can really add up!

The only real disadvantage to not attending an office as an employee is the lack of socializing you can find in the workplace. You’re also not likely to be as ‘in the know’ as your office based counterparts. Sure, you can try and keep as in touch as possible via Skype and other communicative means, but there’s a camaraderie you find in the office that you wouldn’t necessarily find on a Skype chat or internal round robin email. You also may find that working at home can be a big distraction, which is why you should endeavor to have an office space that’s purely for you to work in.

For the most part, working remotely is a privilege for both employee and employer, and finding a balance that comes with remote working is going to be an essential part of your working week. Whether you are an employer or an employee, remote working and balancing office work with working from home is going to benefit a business all around. Business owners can lessen their overheads while offering something lucrative to working families, and employees can work harder and are more grateful for the opportunity to work outside of a long commute and office environment. While there are disadvantages on both sides, the advantages far outweigh these for both parties. Remote working doesn’t have to be a difficult decision – either for an employer or an employee. Working out what works best is the first step!

Business Overseas Relocation: Where In The World Should You Go?

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The idea of moving your business can be a daunting one, but there are numerous upsides to consider. There are many countries dotted around the world with lower levels of corporation tax, meaning that you could save a substantial amount of money on your operating costs– even when you factor in the potential expense of such a move.

According to the Tax Foundation, the US has the third-highest corporation tax rates in the world, so it’s easy to contemplate the savings you could make. If you decide to make a move, where in the world should you aim to go?

Macau

With a top rate of corporation tax of just 12.0% — which is less than half the US rate — it’s easy to see why Macau has become such a business center in recent years. A former Portuguese colony, Macau has been under Chinese sovereignty for nearly 20 years, and has flourished in this time.

Singapore

A corporation tax rate of 17.0% and a low-regulation style system has meant Singapore has created a powerful reputation as a business haven. The top rate corporate tax is still nearly half of what it is in the US, and an established foreign infrastructure can help you make the transition with ease.

While there will be new laws to adapt to, the general low levels of regulation mean that there are fewer bureaucratic hoops to jump through, which is well worth taking into account.

The UK

The UK’s top rate of corporation tax of 20.0% is not the lowest in the world (though still lower than the US), but is noticeably low for a developed country. What makes the UK such an intriguing investment is the uncertainty created by the Brexit vote. The right wing of the (minority) governing Tory party have made it clear they believe the UK’s future involves styling itself as a “Singapore-style low tax, low regulation economy”. The center wing of the party disagrees, but it’s fair to say current Brexit negotiations are not going well, meaning that a “Singapore-style” economy could ultimately be born from the chaos.

There will be new-to-you laws and legislation to adapt to, meaning you may need help with key legislation, but there’s plenty of help around. If you need to figure out IR35 then expert advice and resources from Qdos Contractor will get you up to speed, while PAYE advice can be found from most accounts. Ultimately, if you prefer the idea of moving to an Anglophone country with a potentially lucrative future, then the UK might be a good bet.

Ireland

Ireland has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world, at 12.5%. The downside is the country has a history of economic instability — the so-called “Celtic Tiger” that ultimately proved unsustainable — which may give you pause. The economy is relatively stable at the present time and notably business-friendly, so if you don’t mind the potential for future unrest, then Ireland could be a viable option.

If you want to cut your operating costs — and particularly your corporate tax rate — then any of the countries above are well worth considering.

Working In A New Country – Survival Hacks

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Moving to a new country is a daunting and exciting thing, with, probably the hardest task is getting a job. Or if you already have one secured, it will be the language and cultural barriers that you must cross. If you have moved to a new country that speaks the same language as you, then you have a good step up, but there are always new things to learn in a new country. Before you move, prep. Use the internet to research where you’re going, have a vague idea of the layout of the town or city, and start to get to grips with the money, laws and traditions.

Language

The language is going to be the hardest barrier to face. The hope for most moving to a new country is to learn it and be as fluent in it as their mother tongue. And living in a different country is the easiest way to learn a new language, if only because you have no choice but to learn to speak it. You can find schools and teachers in any country, and, hopefully, they will do as the Effortless English Club in the US do, and teach in a modern and flexible way, and not like going back to school. You can also kick off your learning with apps like Babel so that you can get the basics down before moving.

Socialize

With neighbors, colleagues and anyone else you meet – make an effort to socialize, not only will you become more fluent when speaking, but you’ll learn more about the place you’re living. There’s no point moving somewhere new and shutting yourself away all the time. Explore and enjoy the place that has become your new home, don’t let work take over. Hanging out with people gives you the chance to learn about the local culture too – about the socially accepted rules, and the things to avoid. About any festivals or celebrations, any national holidays that you can get involved in and enjoy. One of the easiest things to do in a strange place is to shut everything out, causing you to feel homesick and even depressed.

Help

If you’re struggling to grasp an aspect of your new job, having a problem with the language barrier, or an issue with anything really – you just need to ask for some help. Ask your boss or one of your new found friends. Don’t sit there and let it become a much bigger issue down the road. There is no harm in asking.

Live Like A Native

There maybe things you’re used to back home that are very different in your new country; rather than buying your food at a store, you might have to go to a market. Cooking might be different, the food you’re used to not available. And where you might miss it, think about the new skills you’ll learn, the exciting prospects of trying new things, and how amazing food will taste when you visit home again. Try and integrate some local culture into your daily life and appreciate the new land you live in.

Where’s The Remote? Does The Remote Working System Really Work?!

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It seems to be one of the key aspects of growing a business now, especially because it’s viewed as a very cheap way of growing your empire, remote working is proving extremely popular from both perspectives, from the employer, as well as the employee. We’ve all thought at some point how we would like to work from home, neither because there are certain strains in our life that we could do without, such as the dreaded daily commute, but does the remote work model actually benefit anybody? Let’s have a look at it from both sides.

The Employer

The main issue that employers have with remote working staff, once you take into account the reduction in cost, is the communication aspect can be very trying. Depending on your business, such as if you’ve got people working for you all over the world, this can add another layer of frustration to the issue. Time zones, not replying to emails as soon as possible, as well as trying to liaise even once a month with an employee, can be a bit like pulling teeth. Another frustration to add on top of this is all dependent on if you are working with very specific programs. Lots of companies communicate with their workers via commonly used tools, such as Hangouts, or use Google Docs for sharing documents and so forth. But if your company is niche, and requires the use of a specific program, or you need to develop software, it is vital that you have the adequate protection in place. There are business resources, such as Network Solutions, that you can utilize, to protect your servers, or to implement a sophisticated server that you would use for remote workers, but also you need to think about the impact of the amount of devices that are being used for this work. One small virus on a smartphone that uses the software, and potentially your data will be stolen, and your business will crumble soon after. Remote working has a lot of benefits, but communication, as well as computer usage, are the two problems that need addressing at the outset.

The Employee

There have been various debates on the work from home setup from the perspective of an employee. And while it is down to the person themselves to set up a productive working pattern, every person who works from home, regardless of their stance within a company, whether they are at the bottom of the pecking order, or they are running the company, can benefit from some strict measures to ensure they work productively. Anybody working from home needs to set a specific working pattern, and although the draw of sitting at home in their pajamas on the couch does sound very appealing at the outset, it soon loses its charm. From the perspective of an employer, you should instigate a two-way system of communication, one where they are able to check in on you first thing in the morning, or they are contactable throughout the day. This is one issue that will not only help the employer keep tabs, but it helps the employee to remain productive.

The idea of remote working is very popular, and it can work, but you do need to think hard about if it’s a structure that, firstly, lends itself well to your style of business, but also if it lends itself well to you as the employer. Would you rather people work in this disparate fashion or do you want a team of people that gel and work together?

Working From Home: Dream Come True Or Waking Nightmare?

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Have you ever been sat in the car on your way to work, stuck in traffic, just wishing you could have stayed at home? Of course, you have, it’s one of the most common feelings that people have when working any kind of nine-to-five job. They imagine being able to stay at home where they’re comfortable and not having their boss staring down their neck all of the time. Well, thanks to the rise of freelancing and remote working, for a lot of people that fantasy is very much a reality. Every day more and more people are opting to work from home instead of from the office, and there are plenty of benefits to doing this. It cuts down on your commute time, it allows you to work in a space where you’re totally comfortable, and it offers the kind of flexibility and balance that many people want but can only dream of. That being said, working from home isn’t always easy. In fact, it can actually be something of a serious challenge for a lot of people. Sure, there are benefits, but there are plenty of things that can turn working from home from a dream come true, into a waking nightmare. Here are a few things that everyone needs if they want to make working from home really work.

A quiet space

For a lot of people, one of the best things about working from home is the idea that you can work while relaxing on the couch or even while staying in bed. This might be fun for the first week or so but it wears thin pretty quickly. Not only that but being surrounded by all of the distractions that you have in your home can completely ruin your productivity. If you want to make the most out of working from home, then you’ve got to find a space where you can get away from all of that. Something like a home office is perfect but even a quiet corner of the dining or living room where you have a desk setup will work. The key is to create some kind of space where you’re able to keep your work life and personal life separate.

Somewhere to sit

The other big issue when it comes to working in bed or on the couch is that it can have an incredibly negative impact on your posture. Spending all day lying down might sound like heaven, but it can leave you feeling stiff and sore, not to mention potentially leading to even more serious problems. That’s why it’s so important to have a desk where you can sit and work, as well as a comfortable chair to sit in. The best office chairs are ones that offer a great deal of support, particularly to your lower back, while still being comfortable to sit in. Don’t assume that any old chair will do. If you’re going to be spending all day working at a desk, then you need to make sure that you’re comfortable and well supported at all times.

A decent routine

The other thing that is so great about working from home is that you often don’t have the same strict set of deadlines that you might normally have when working in an office. You’re offered a great deal more flexibility when it comes to your working hours which allows you to work around many of the other aspects of your life. However, a total lack of routine can cause as many problems as it solves. You need to make sure that you have at least some kind of routine in place so that you’re always using your time as productively as possible. Otherwise, you’re going to end up wasting time, working late, or rushing, all of which are going to end up causing the work to suffer compared to if you had just set out a specific time during the day to work regularly. It’s okay to be flexible, but it’s a good idea to have something that you can be flexible around.

Discipline

It’s great to be able to get on with your day’s work without your boss staring down your neck, but a lot of people end up finding that the level of freedom afforded to them by working from home can be both a blessing and a curse. The reality is that for those who are used to being motivated by their boss putting pressure on them, the total lack of pressure that comes with working from home is actually too much freedom. It leads them to become lazy in ways that they might not previously have been, and it can cause the work to suffer. It can be tough when there’s no one around to hold you accountable, but you’ve got to make sure that you’re disciplined enough to put your full effort it all the time.

Strong communication

Whether you’re working as a freelancer or you’re remotely working as part of a company, many employers or clients can often feel as though they don’t know what you’re doing, which can cause them to assume that you’re wasting their time and money. You shouldn’t be obsessing over spending every second of your day making sure that your employer knows exactly what you’re doing, but it’s always a good idea to make sure that you stay in communication with them as much as possible. That way, despite the fact that you’re not in the same place, they can be sure that you’re not wasting their time and you can be sure that you’re always providing the kind of work that they really want.

Of course, you shouldn’t look at this list as an attempt to discourage you from working from home. The reality is that working from home can be the very best option for a lot of people. The best thing that you can do is to do as much as research as possible to figure out exactly what kind of working situation is right for you.

How To Put The Boring Stuff on Auto-Pilot

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Life is short.  You don’t want to be bogged down by having to spend all your time paying bills, cleaning your house, managing your finances, and grocery shopping.  In this article you’ll discover five simple strategies to put the boring stuff on auto-pilot.

GROCERY SHOPPING

Grocery shopping is surprisingly time-intensive when you consider the time it takes to drive to the store, make your selections, pay at the checkout, pack your bags, unpack your bags, sit in traffic and so on.  A much more efficient solution is to order groceries online.  You can automate this process, by setting up a repeating list of regular items, which you can then add to at will.  This way, you know you have the boring basics taken care of but can still feel free to choose exciting treats for the week ahead.

BATCH COOK FOR THE WEEK AHEAD

Whilst food and cooking can be a passion for some, a lot of the time, particularly during the workweek, it is a laborious chore that isn’t about taste and creative expression – it’s about quickly putting something together as a result of being famished or time starved.  

A great solution, is to batch cook your meals in advance; as an example, you make a large portion of Spaghetti Bolognese at the weekend, that can then be stored in an airtight container such as a foodsaver bag that can be refrigerated or frozen – so, you can have a tasty and healthy meal ready in minutes.  This is a much healthier and cost effective option than to use ready meals, or rely on take-aways.  It may feel restrictive at first, but you can supplement the meals with tasty recipes such as this simple avocado toast.

CLEANING

Okay, not everyone can afford a cleaner but when you consider how many hours it can take to actually clean a house, it really isn’t many – the time intensity can be found more in organizing and sorting.  Therefore, it’s possible that you could pay a cleaner for just two hours each week and know the basic household chores will be taken care of.

AUTOMATE YOUR FINANCES

It can be very simple to systematize your finances.  A good idea is to set up your bill payments so they all leave your account on the date you get your first paycheck of the month (e.g. the first of the month).  Similarly, it would be a good idea to set up an automatic saving plan that also comes out on the first of the month – you could even divide this into specific sub-savings accounts.  This way, you know that your core financial priorities are taken care of, and whatever is left from your paycheck, is free to consume as you wish.  Not only will this save time but it will also save a significant amount of stress.

AUTOMATE YOUR BUSINESS

If you are a business owner, then you can use automated tools like Mailchimp, Buffer, and ThePaystubs.com to automate common tasks like email follow up, social media postings, and pay slip processing.  You may wish to consider taking advantage of the trend in outsourcing, where a lot of the more mundane tasks are outsourced to a virtual assistant, or even hire a more specialist virtual assistant, to help with more complex (yet boring) tasks such as accounting.

3 Interview Questions For Hiring Remote Workers

Hiring onsite employees is tough enough, but when it comes to hiring remote workers don’t overcomplicate it.

Before considering to hire remotely, trust is monumental. Without it you’ll fail.

Managing people virtually shouldn’t be much different than in-person since what works face-to-face tends to work over video/phone.

Keep in mind retaining workers is costly when the wrong person is hired, so use the following three questions as a guide to weed out the amateurs and hire the best:

1. Why?

Start with a candidate’s character. Why questions get to the motivation behind an answer. You won’t be physically present to witness how someone spends their time during work, so figure out how driven, self-aware and organized they are ahead of time. Why questions hit at the core of who someone is. Asking past behavior scenarios tend to be the most popular during interviews, but past success doesn’t always translate smoothly to new endeavors. If you need more context watch this Simon Sinek video on why.

2. How?

You can have the most knowledgable person working for you, but if they don’t fit your culture you’ve made a bad hire. Without downplaying competence, style questions are a must when it comes to hiring the right people. If you’re unsure how to define your culture, stop and figure it out before hiring anyone. How questions really come down to identifying personal strengths. The best leaders in any industry are self-aware. That means generic answers on an interview just don’t cut it. As an employer you want to know how they prioritize, interact with others and communicate orally/written just to name a few. Most of a manager’s time is spent dealing with interpersonal issues, so if you’re seeing red flags when it comes to personality quirks don’t proceed. Another helpful exercise is hiring based on your company’s core values. They can be even more powerful than mission or vision statements because they are measurable in behaviors. Zappos is a good example if you need a place to start.

3. What? 

Typical interviews start here. Tell me about your last job. Describe a time you failed a task and what was your response. What is your biggest weakness? Candidates can rehearse these answers and interviewers can critique every detail. The truth is what questions don’t reveal nearly as much as “why” or “how” questions. When asking “what” questions find out: experience, industry knowledge and their decision making process. Interviews are just a preliminary phase to understanding on-the-job performance. Even the best questions can’t possibly cover future mistakes by workers. A judgment call must be made here: do you want to hire for experience (less training, higher salary) or potential (more training, lower salary)? The answer to this question comes back to your core values.

Consider this: treat all your future interviews as potentially remote hires. Not only is that the way our economy is headed, but if you can trust someone working virtually you definitely can in the office.

Hire the best. Don’t settle for less.

How to Diversify Your Career (Like Your Portfolio)

Financial advisors will tell you never put all your eggs into one basket.

Brilliant advice, but why does it need to stop there?

Having one source of income is risky.

If you’re working corporate and get laid off/fired you’re in trouble.

If you’re an entrepreneur/freelancer and lack predicable paychecks you’re screwed.

You and I have been told to choose something for your career then focus all your time and energy there, but what if that isn’t great advice?

What if I told you can have both? (have your cake and eat it too!)

There are pros and cons to choosing working for someone else vs. working for yourself, but if you manage your time right and stay organized there’s no reason you can’t sustain two or more options.

You may be hesitant to monetize your passion, which is fine, but is there another side project you can earn money from?

If working a salaried position within a company, “full-time” needs to be defined up front (ask in the interview process). The scary part is once you’re on salary you’re not being paid for the hours worked, but essentially based on the needs of the company (translation: overtime is not optional or compensated for).

Remember full-time is technically 30 hours and if you’re dealing with a startup you can negotiate this ahead of time. In fact it’s refreshing that most people working in startups actually encourage you to have side hustles.

Google made “side projects” cool by promoting 20% time. Employees get 20% of their work time to spend collaborating with others trying to create new products/services. Now everyone doesn’t work for Google or a company of that stature, but we all have the same amount of time in week to use accordingly.

For instance if you’re working a 9-6 job plus have a family, set aside a few hours a week after putting the kids down to draft out and test your ideas. If you’re single or dating, you really have no excuses.

Maybe you’re waiting for permission or inspiration, but like most things in life consistent practice brings results. Ask most successful entrepreneurs how many times they failed and the number is far greater than those who haven’t tried.

In the gig economy your “job” will change more frequently so if you’re not learning new skills or polishing your current ones, you’ll be left behind.

My point is don’t rely on one source of income to sustain you. In a fast-paced, changing world it’s better to have options in case something doesn’t pan out the way you anticipated it to. Life comes at you fast. Be ready.

Diversify your career. You have a better chance of succeeding that way.

3 Ways Managing Remotely Made Me A Better Leader

Managing people is hard enough, but try doing it remotely.

On a weekly basis I spend the bulk of my hours at work meeting 30 individuals via Zoom for 30 minute check-ins. During that time we cover a myriad of different metrics that rate their performance, but I choose to focus on 3 things solely:

1. Connecting – technology has widened the talent pool, but also breeds disconnection. Instead of being concerned about physical location as a barrier, I try to immerse myself in a session as if we were in the same room. Human connection is a powerful thing no matter where you are. Relationships are formed over time through trust regardless of distance. Working remotely can present challenges yet with empathy, active listening and genuine care the virtual gap can be closed. Think of having a conversation with a friend over coffee. The same principles of building a friendship apply here. Connection is the foundation for any working relationship to thrive.

2. Community – working from home sounds glorious until you look around and realize you’re alone. If employees can feel isolated in an office full of co-workers imagine how remote employees feel. The concept of a “virtual water cooler” has been talked about, but how do you make it happen? As a suggestion, Slack is a great place to start. The platform you choose isn’t as important as it’s function. In this case it’s to organically build relationships during personal time. Instead of gathering at the lunch table or local bar, it’s responding to someone’s question, comment, photo or video. It’s not something that can be forced, nor in some cases facilitated. It takes several people in the group to take initiative and put in the effort to communicate. In fact the best interactions are when the manager isn’t involved. The voluntary part of it makes it real.

3. Cultivate – the uniqueness of each member of the team makes the whole together special. Most managers try to control employees working remotely because they have trust issues. The problem is the more policies and procedures you enforce, the more anarchy is created. Trust is built via connecting so everything grows out of that. Don’t try to mold everyone to be the same, celebrate their differences. When each person brings their unique talents and strengths to the table, why would a manager quell them? A manager’s role is to bring out the best in each person by leveraging personal strengths. If you’re not developing people as a manager you’re crushing their spirit. It’s not enough to have the right people on the bus. Each person has to be on the right seat in order to reach the promise land. My job is to allow my team to shine by getting out of their way.

As a leader managing people remotely is challenging, but a true test of your abilities. Similar to organizing volunteers, when you are stripped of power, money and resources all you have is your relationships. My belief is if you can lead others remotely, you can lead any team anywhere. If you want to test your leadership capabilities manage people from a distance. You’ll be forced to give up control, ego and certainty…and that’s not a bad thing at all.

Corporate America’s Missing Ingredient

empathy

There’s something missing in Corporate America, but it’s not what you think.

Technology gives us the opportunity to work remotely and scale businesses.

Outsourcing labor multiplies growth while saving massive amounts of time.

Investors provide the resources to transform a hobby into an empire.

But the one thing that retains the top talent worldwide is: empathy.

In a broadcast-driven society, rarely do people put themselves in other’s shoes.

Managing egos and customizing messaging is the difference between success and failure.

Here’s why:

Even with the best technology you still need people to run it. Salaries are competitive, social impact is rampant and perks are plentiful. Therefore how you treat people defines their company loyalty.

Take for instance managers. The top reason most people leave their jobs is because they feel disrespected or undervalued. Simply viewing the impact of your decisions from the receiver’s point of view makes all the difference in the world. Most managers are ill-equipped to lead others. Just because you’re a great widget maker doesn’t translate well to a manager of widget makers.

Empathy is a learned skill (although it can be argued some have a higher ceiling than others). Kids are taught at a young age to think about how their actions affect others. Somewhere between preschool and adulthood that lesson is forgotten. Money and power corrupt our ability to serve.

Personally I’ve witnessed many conflicts started because of a failure to empathize. The same reasons countries go into war on a macro-level happens to co-workers at a micro-level. Stress has a tremendous drain on productivity and the majority of it can be avoided by showing empathy.

The downgrade of soft skills will only continue to get worse and at the core of the deterioration is a lack of empathy.

Empathy is not something HR can teach or a motivational speaker can inspire you to do. It takes making a commitment to servant leadership. Stop thinking positional leadership puts you on top. Instead understand supporting others from beneath actually pushes them to reach their fullest potential.

Will you do your part?