How to keep your small business running smoothly from a distance

Image by Hatice EROL from Pixabay

By Emma Williams

This year, businesses around the world have got a taste of remote work. And while some struggled to adjust to the changes, others have discovered a lucrative potential in managing their business remotely. True, not having to deal with the costs of keeping up a physical workspace drastically reduces your overhead costs; you get to save on rent, utility, supplies, commuting expenses and a slew of others. However, running a business smoothly from a distance is anything but easy. So, here are a few tips that should help you out.

Hiring a good team

Remote businesses have the advantage of being able to hire workers from all over the world, given that space is no longer a restriction. This opens up a much bigger talent pool. However, hiring the right people becomes even more important when you cannot physically oversee them while they are working. This is why, besides their skills and qualifications, their attitude and motivation are of the essence, too. Search the right platforms when looking for talent and write job postings that will pique their interest. Create a solid hiring process that will allow you to screen candidates effectively, ask the right questions during the video interview, and test their skills by assigning them some of the usual tasks.

Getting the right digital tools

When working remotely, communication is greatly reduced. This can cause delays and tasks taking a longer time than necessary. Needless to say, a business operating remotely simply cannot function without the right digital tools. These tools are the cornerstone of managing a remote workforce. You’re going to need a slew of different ones to track time, store files, manage projects, stay in contact with everyone, hold meetings and conferences, and so on. The good news is that today, you really have a vast choice when it comes to picking these tools, so you can find what works best for your company.


As we just mentioned, you have to make an extra effort to ensure that communication within your business is without obstacles. It’s important to realize that you are likely going to need different communication tools in different situations to ensure work can run smoothly. Therefore, figure out a communication plan and make sure all of your employees are on the same page. You might agree to use Skype or Zoom for daily meetings and briefings in the morning while turning to an instant messaging service for less formal conversations. It might also be a good idea to resolve urgent or more complicated matters via phone calls to avoid miscommunication. Make sure the communication channels are open and encourage your employees to use them freely to reduce the isolation of working remotely.

Having a solid home office

Creating an ideal environment that will allow you to be productive is essential for managing a business from home. You cannot possibly do video conferences in the middle of your living room where your family members might interrupt you any minute. You have to appear professional on the camera, so working from your bedroom is also out of the question. Creating a home office in a corner of your house where you can do your work in peace would be the best course of action. A desk that accommodates all your tech needs, ample storage so that you can keep your workspace tidy, an ergonomic chair that won’t give you back pain, and a practical chair mat to protect your floors are just some of the necessities. In the long term, this adjustment is more than worth the investment.

Time management

Finally, to run a small business smoothly from a distance, what you are really going to need are stellar time management skills. Small business owners have a lot on their plate, to begin with, but working from your home might make it even more difficult. So, make sure you have a routine as well as clear working hours, just like in a regular office. Leverage the aforementioned time management tools to track both yourself and your remote workers. You might decide to use a screen monitoring service or make use of a virtual work clock your employees can punch. At the same time, make sure you don’t end up working 24/7. Managing your time also means taking time off for the sake of your physical and mental health.


Running a small business remotely is not easy; however, today, you have all the tools you might need at your disposal. With enough determination and the above tips, you should be able to keep everything under control and achieve success.


Emma Williams is an Australian writer with a master‘s degree in business administration, who has a passion for anything lifestyle and design related. She spends most of her time redecorating and participating in house projects. As a great nature lover, her biggest pleasure is spending time in a small cottage by the river.

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