Do you ever watch those restaurant reality shows? You know the ones—a high-caliber chef and business owner goes into a small, locally-owned eatery to help them figure out how they can improve their management, menu, and dining area? The most dramatic turnarounds for failing businesses often come when the owner learns from their mistakes and takes the advised steps to improve their practices.
Ambitious entrepreneurs can learn a great deal about what to do—and what NOT to do—from shows like these. Every business owner needs a certain set of skills for their industry. Even remote workers can pick up principles of business wisdom by watching the missteps and achievements of others who own small businesses. When the success or failure of a new remote business rides on the back of one lone entrepreneur, he or she would be wise to consider whether they have the chops to make it work.
Of course, it’s easy to point out others’ mistakes and lack of skills. But what about you? Do you have what it takes to make it as a remote worker?
6 Essential Skills Remote Workers Need to Succeed
A remote owner has the unique challenge of making all the wheels turn in their business, especially at first. I believe anyone can start a successful remote business with these skills:
1. Organization Skills
Remote workers don’t get to just sit around in their pajamas all day and decide what they want to do on a whim. If they want to actually make money, they need a solid plan for tasks and projects. If you aren’t used to managing your own projects or maintaining a schedule, this can turn into a particular challenge—but you can learn to overcome it!
Think about how you plan to organize your day. Set aside chunks of time for certain items on your to-do list, and set goals, so you don’t get distracted by time-consuming tasks. You’ll also want to consider your workspace and keep it business-related, instead of letting your personal mail pile up over your keyboard.
Google Business Suite has low-cost planning programs available. Microsoft Office also remains a popular choice, especially if you use multiple programs, like Excel and Outlook. Monday.com lets you coordinate projects at every stage and has the option to adapt for team use when you’re ready to expand.
2. Self-Starting Skills
To start a remote business, you’ve got to be a “go-getter.” No one will make you get out of your comfortable bed in the morning and start working. You have to find the motivation and the mindset to chase your big dream of making a successful business from home. This requires a certain level of assertiveness. If you don’t have initiative, it’s going to be a difficult path for you as a remote worker.
Instead of waiting for inspiration or a “sudden onset” of new business knowledge to appear, make it happen. Read books from successful leaders. Take courses to sharpen skills. Try new ideas and see what works. Don’t avoid hard tasks—check them off your list. Find proactive solutions to whatever problems pop up along the way, and troubleshoot potential issues before they happen. When an unfamiliar aspect of business comes up, take the opportunity to learn from it.
3. Money Management Skills
I have a couple of points to make about money management that people often miss. First, you’ve got to manage your finances. Businesses go under all the time because of poor money management. If you can’t keep up with your budget or track your financial goals, hire an assistant or an advisor. They can keep track of money and ask you about issues you might not have thought of. You can purchase programs that make it easy to budget, so invest in one of them. Your future self will thank you when you know exactly where your money goes and how much revenue you’re bringing in.
Second, many new business owners don’t realize their need to invest money in their business to produce desired outcomes. The point is that you have to spend money now to earn money later. Don’t be cheap (like I used to be) and try to build a successful company by only using free resources or asking favors. It won’t work—trust me. Don’t overwhelm your schedule with tasks that take you forever when you can hire someone to do them faster. When you do, you can spend time actually running your business instead of focusing on menial office work. Invest in quality programs, hire expert contractors, and pursue your goals with an excellent work ethic.
4. Networking Skills
Even though remote workers may do the majority of their business from home, that doesn’t let them off the hook about building relationships. Your business will flounder if you don’t have basic networking skills.
Start by telling the people around you what you’ve got going on with your business. You don’t have to annoy them by acting like an old-fashioned used car salesman. Just have conversations with people who seem interested and want to know more about what you do. Who knows—you may have just the right solution to their problem!
You don’t have to see other marketers in your industry as competition. Find ways to collaborate with them. Learn from successful business owners. Get them to show you their methods. Avoid their mistakes. Adapt good practices for your own business.
5. Communication Skills
Even though a bulk of remote work happens alone, you do have to interact with clients. That’s not to mention others, like suppliers, contractors, and potentially employees and team members. You want to build good relationships with those you collaborate with or provide service to, so a professional, friendly manner is key. If you struggle with written communications, like typing out a polished email, pick up a guide on how to improve.
How are your people skills? Many people think you can’t learn this—that it can only come naturally. While it might be more difficult for some, I compare the skill to playing a musical instrument—you can practice to improve. You will make mistakes. You can try again. Humility and kindness go a long way in giving others a sense of your friendliness.
I always say this is the number one thing it takes to build a business. Building a business takes real, hard work. You need patience to see your goals through. You need endurance through the grueling tasks. You need a mindset that works consistently toward goals, no matter what setbacks you face. Put in the effort to learn whatever skills you need to accomplish those goals.
A good strategy will help you stay on track. That’s where we at Remote Millionaires come in. We’re here to support you through all those firsts and help you find the resources you need to be truly successful. If you want to learn how to build a recession-proof, automated business, check out our FREE, 15-minute training and start generating at least $8k per month in weeks.