We’re evolving the way we work. Sure, that’s always been the case to some degree, but today the paradigm is perhaps more obviously different than in the last, say, 50 years or so. The intersection of the technology and tools required to facilitate communication paired with our collective appetite to create more meaning, balance and flexibility in our personal and professional lives has lead to the rise of the Remote Workforce. There are thousands of businesses across the world opting for some level of remote work, with varying degrees of success based of myriad factors. Here are the stories of three companies doing it incredibly well.
We’ve written at length about Buffer’s ability to build, grow and scale a thriving fully remote operation. If you have ten minutes, give it a read. Like basically every remote operation that shows some measure of success, they have multiple avenues of communication that they use to keep employees in constant contact. They also employ workers across the globe and will use this to their strategic advantage: while one team is sleeping, the other team is working. Great way to hack the workday. Buffer is also radically transparent about the inner workings of their business, they obscure nothing from their team. The culture that they have cultivated is one of radical transparency, and employees appreciate the honesty, which in turn creates loyalty, which makes for a better team.
Invision App is the go-to prototyping tool for UX designers, product managers, and designed-minded entrepreneurs when it comes to building and testing low-fidelity concepts. And they are only expanding. This year alone they released a competing software to Sketch and Adobe XD called Studio that’s already gobbling up market share, and started making acquisitions of smaller companies in the design space. They are really becoming a pain in Adobe’s ass. And what’s more, they are 100% remote. The key to their success, as they claim, is small hyper-connected teams that are completely focused on their assigned tasks. If the teams lack resources to build something, they have a robust support structure in the executive leadership team that is there when they need them. We’ll dive deeper into how Invision makes it happen in the near future.
Zapier (a product that makes it simple for businesses and individuals to automate certain tasks, operation, technologies or workflows) is banking big on the expansion of the Internet of Things (iot) being a big efficiency play for the business of the future. They’re thinking waaaay beyond “Alexa, turn on my living room lights” and more along the lines of “Alexa, run a search in column A of my Facebook lead ads Google sheet and de-duplicate any emails you find” which is a command that doesn’t exist right now, but it would be cool if it did. Also, they are 100% remote, from the CEO all the way down to whoever manages their Twitter feed—who, in reality, is probably not a “he” or a “she” but a hyper-intelligent Zapier feature connected to the CEO’s brain or something. These guys are pretty sharp. They’ve actually written a somewhat comprehensive guide to their particular method of how they made their remote team work. It’s worth a read—though it is a lead generator and it requires you to give them your email.