How to Make Your Job More Mobile
Perhaps you became an entrepreneur, at least in part, thinking you’d have more freedom and control over your work schedule. Perhaps you’ve since discovered that sneaking away from the office is even harder to pull off now that you’re running the show. However, it isn’t impossible — and finding a way to free yourself, even if it’s just to work remotely, has very real benefits. Here’s how to get away from your desk, at least for a little while.
Use collaborative tools. With a cloud-computing solution, you can check in on colleagues and employees from afar. You may pay a fee (usually subscription-based) to use these services, but the right provider can eliminate that age-old, “Why isn’t the latest version on the server?” issue that often arises when collaborating with people in different locations and using a traditional file-storage system. If you’re not “in the cloud,” make sure you have clear operational procedures in place — and get all employees to follow them — in order to ensure that you can conduct business elsewhere, efficiently, without disruption.
Be omnipresent. To make your transition from office to off-site (and back again) truly seamless, you need to become a “quick responder.” If you’re a particularly hands-on leader, chaos and confusion can quickly creep into work flows when you’re unavailable to give approval or guidance. When you leave the office, make sure that you’re not only reachable, but also let people know you’re involved and engaged, regardless of your physical presence.
Make your workload more manageable. There are plenty of new, cheap technologies that make being mobile more manageable. Evernote has features that include the ability to record and file random musings while you’re in the car, as well as the ability to store handwritten notes online and search by keyword for them later. Join.me allows you to share your desktop with others. While it’s not as sophisticated as its pricier peers, its simplicity makes it easy to conduct group presentations, meetings, and brainstorming sessions in just a few clicks.
Stephanie Christensen is a business writer for Intuit and is passionate about solving small business problems.