THE INVINCIBLE MAN
Distributed team management
Unwashed dishes, empty candy wrappers, a laptop patiently waiting at the side of a messy sofa - who needs an office when you can work from home! Well, if you're starting your business from scratch, this kind of working ethic rarely leads to proficient results. Yes, it's often reasonable to start a company without an office, just managing several developers who work on your POC. And there are hundreds of tutorials o how to manage your remote employees. But this time we will talk about a key person of the business - a person who tuns a pre-seed startup and decided to nurture his product or business without having an expensive office from the very beginning. May this article serve as a friendly guide for those who found themselves stuck into a maze, or, as my boss once put it, how to stop being lazy working at home. Either way, let's roll!
Communicate with your employees
Ideally, a couple of times a day plus a weekly summary should do the trick. Do a quick Q&A to discuss progress and the blockers you've come to face over the week. Yes, your employees probably have enough on their plates. Still, it's good to let each other know that you're alive once in a while. Communication time shall be as much stable and predictable as possible - this is one of the keys to disciplined and self-organized team processes.
Organize your working space
The fact that you can work from anywhere doesn't mean you should. Sure, working at home, apart from being the best thing ever for introverted people, is known to reduce stress levels. But only on one condition - it must be set up well. Separate your working space from the living space. Clean up your desk, set the laptop, and provide yourself with every kind of office appliances necessary. In case you prefer working from a cafe or a coworking nearby - even better. This way, you not only get your spaces separated but a nice cup of coffee as well.
No one argues the benefits of regular physical exercises. Still, we all know how it is, aren't we? A workout routine is set to start on Monday, but it never does. Things tend to get in the way, be it family life, social pressures, or work itself. So exercise, get yourself hydrated, take a walk. Even a small break from work to stretch the muscles now and again is good. Do whatever you want, but please don't neglect your health. We need you!
Find out your ideal working schedule
Although working at home doesn't imply a 9 to 5 schedule, still there should be at least some kind of discipline. Otherwise, any road leads to either chronic overworking or chronic laziness. To secure yourself from such issues, find your way of organizing working hours. If you're a night owl, then sleeping in and working way into the dark is what you need. Same for the early birds - rise early, work until lunch with the evening spared for the personal activities. You're not in the office now, so you might as well do whatever floats your boat.
Get to know people you work with
Everybody needs human contact, that’s a part of the game. And while being at the office means being naturally surrounded by people, working at home doesn’t bring that privilege along. Luckily, there’s a solution to almost everything nowadays - a Slack chat or some analog to it. So, make yourself present. Send birthday greetings, emoji stickers, or wish good morning. Let everybody know you're a part of the team and not an invisible man dwelling somewhere on the other side of town. Moreover, independence from office locations helps to meet people personally for negotiation and finding your first clients. Several personal meetings in your city or in your client's office are also what helps to stay in your soft skills sharp.