When I was asked these 4 questions about the pros and cons of running a remote team as a digital agency owner, here’s what i had to say.

Best thing about running a remote team

Hands down, getting the right talent and fit for the team onboard. My previous agency was built around having local people all working from our brick and mortar address in the city. This meant that we simply couldn’t always get the right people, simply because of geographical restrictions.

The other problem with local talent is that some digital agencies are always on the lookout to poach your best digital marketers – and you see a lot of people moving from one agency to another. This makes it hard to invest in training staff as there’s a bigger chance that they leave if there’s a better offer on the table.

Worst thing about running a remote team

I like doing interviews face to face, and get a feel for someone’s presence. While video calls kind of work, it’s still hard to gauge a person’s energy level that way. Once hired, you have to keep a close eye on performance and metrics by checking project progress. It feels sometimes that there’s a bit of a disconnect – for example; it’s hard to see what someone’s mood is if they’re physically not in the office – and that can clash at times, where work loads can get a bit much for the remote worker, while they don’t feel understood by management.

Hardest thing about running a remote team

You need more time with meetings and make sure that work tasks and responsibilities are crystal clear. While having an in-house person, you can sort of check in over the shoulder from time to time and quickly adjust things if they seem to float off course. With a remote worker, sometimes they spend an entire day on work that in hind-sight wasn’t needed.

If you don’t have solid operating procedures and systems, projects can fall through the cracks as not everyone in the tram is on the same page. This is why it’s crucial to have open lines of communication, clear task definitions and agreed upon responsibilities.

Easiest thing about running a remote team

Flexibility and lower overheads! We used to pay $60K/y just for office space, people had to commit to commuting and try to fit everything into their schedule from 9-5. With the remote team, we all have the flexibility to get things done when we are most productive. Some of us will do our best work before 9AM and some of us really excel after 9PM. This way we don’t restrict creative thinking and the flow that a person prefers. This usually ends up in people doing some of their best work.

If you’re looking for remote work, visit our careers page – or check out remoters.net for new positions.

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