When My Remote Leadership Skills Took Off
4 Ways To Manage Remote Teams & Employees
The wheels hit the ground as I landed in Rochester.
Our six-person satellite office was now part of my team.
Their manager only reported to me the day before, but I had my ticket booked ahead of time.
I had managed remote employees before but this was different. Engineers dialed into headquarters for every meeting.
So when I learned about the org chart change, I knew a strong first impression would set the tone for everything else.
I was either their boss, or their boss's boss, and I needed them to know I was committed.
Managing a fleet of satellite freelancers or multiple offices requires treating others as more than just a face behind a screen.
You must comprehend each remote team member's perspective and daily interactions.
The good news is that you can start using these techniques right now to better understand and elevate virtual team members.
1. Make Visits To Other Offices
If budgeted, visit and work from offices where teams and employees report to you. Only by living alongside them can one truly comprehend their problems with communication and other aspects of modern life.
2. Have Others Come to You
• Having remote, distributed, or satellite employees and teams visit headquarters every quarter or semi-quarterly allows the main office culture to rub off on them.
When remote team members visit, more people get to meet them, which builds empathy.
If you can't afford to fly everyone, at least bring remote managers or leaders. Hopefully they can resurrect some culture.
3. Weekly Work From Home
No home office policy?
WFH is a team-building, problem-solving, and office-viewing opportunity.
For dial-in meetings, I started working from home on occasion.
It also taught me which teams “forget” or “skip” calls.
As a remote team member, you experience all the issues first hand.
This isn't as accurate for understanding teams in other offices, but it can be done at any time.
4. Increase Contact Even If It’s Just To Chat
Don't underestimate office banter.
Sometimes it's about bonding and trust, other times it's about business.
If you get all this information in real-time, please forward it.
Even if nothing critical is happening, call remote team members to check in and chat.
I guarantee that building relationships and rapport will increase both their job satisfaction and yours.
More on Leadership
9 months ago
Because of this covert investment that Bezos made, Amazon became what it is today.
He kept it under wraps for years until he legally couldn’t.
His shirt is incomplete. I can’t stop thinking about this…
Actually, ignore the article. Look at it. JUST LOOK at it… It’s quite disturbing, isn’t it?
Me: “Hey, what up?” Friend: “All good, watching lord of the rings on amazon prime video.” Me: “Oh, do you know how Amazon grew and became famous?” Friend: “Geek alert…Can I just watch in peace?” Me: “But… Bezos?” Friend: “Let it go, just let it go…”
I can question you, the reader, and start answering instantly without his consent. This far.
Reader, how did Amazon succeed? You'll say, Of course, it was an internet bookstore, then it sold everything.
Mistaken. They moved from zero to one because of this. How did they get from one to thousand? AWS-some. Understand? It's geeky and lame. If not, I'll explain my geekiness.
Over an extended period of time, Amazon was not profitable.
Business basics. You want customers if you own a bakery, right?
Well, 100 clients per day order $5 cheesecakes (because cheesecakes are awesome.)
$5 x 100 consumers x 30 days Equals $15,000 monthly revenue. You proudly work here.
Now you have to pay the barista (unless ChatGPT is doing it haha? Nope..)
The barista is requesting $5000 a month.
Each cheesecake costs the cheesecake maker $2.5 ($2.5 × 100 x 30 = $7500).
The monthly cost of running your bakery, including power, is about $5000.
Assume no extra charges. Your operating costs are $17,500.
Just $15,000? You have income but no profit. You might make money selling coffee with your cheesecake next month.
Is losing money bad? You're broke. Losing money. It's bad for financial statements.
It's almost a business ultimatum. Most startups fail. Amazon took nine years.
I'm reading Amazon Unbound: Jeff Bezos and the Creation of a Global Empire to comprehend how a company has a $1 trillion market cap.
Many things made Amazon big. The book claims that Bezos and Amazon kept a specific product secret for a long period.
Clouds above the bald head.
In 2006, Bezos started a cloud computing initiative. They believed many firms like Snapchat would pay for reliable servers.
In 2006, cloud computing was not what it is today. I'll simplify. 2006 had no iPhone.
Bezos invested in Amazon Web Services (AWS) without disclosing its revenue. That's permitted till a certain degree.
Google and Microsoft would realize Amazon is heavily investing in this market and worry.
Bezos anticipated high demand for this product. Microsoft built its cloud in 2010, and Google in 2008.
If you managed Google or Microsoft, you wouldn't know how much Amazon makes from their cloud computing service. It's enough. Yet, Amazon is an internet store, so they'll focus on that.
All but Bezos were wrong.
Time to come clean now.
They revealed AWS revenue in 2015. Two things were apparent:
Bezos made the proper decision to bet on the cloud and keep it a secret.
In this race, Amazon is in the lead.
They continued. Let me list some AWS users today.
More. Amazon was unprofitable for nine years, remember? This article's main graph.
AWS accounted for 74% of Amazon's profit in 2021. This 74% might not exist if they hadn't invested in AWS.
Bring this with you home.
Amazon predated AWS. Yet, it helped the giant reach $1 trillion. Bezos' secrecy? Perhaps, until a time machine is invented (they might host the time machine software on AWS, though.)
Without AWS, Amazon would have been profitable but unimpressive. They may have invested in anything else that would have returned more (like crypto? No? Ok.)
Bezos has business flaws. His success. His failures include:
introducing the Fire Phone and suffering a $170 million loss.
Amazon's failure in China In 2011, Amazon had a about 15% market share in China. 2019 saw a decrease of about 1%.
not offering a higher price to persuade the creator of Netflix to sell the company to him. He offered a rather reasonable $15 million in his proposal. But what if he had offered $30 million instead (Amazon had over $100 million in revenue at the time)? He might have owned Netflix, which has a $156 billion market valuation (and saved billions rather than invest in Amazon Prime Video).
Some he could control. Some were uncontrollable. Nonetheless, every action he made in the foregoing circumstances led him to invest in AWS.
1 year ago
Even In a Crazy Market, Hire the Best People: The "First Ten" Rules
Hiring is difficult, but you shouldn't compromise on team members. Or it may suggest you need to look beyond years in a similar role/function.
Every hire should be someone we'd want as one of our first ten employees.
If you hire such people, your team will adapt, initiate, and problem-solve, and your company will grow. You'll stay nimble even as you scale, and you'll learn from your colleagues.
If you only hire for a specific role or someone who can execute the job, you'll become a cluster of optimizers, and talent will depart for a more fascinating company. A startup is continually changing, therefore you want individuals that embrace it.
As a leader, establishing ideal conditions for talent and having a real ideology should be high on your agenda. You can't eliminate attrition, nor would you want to, but you can hire people who will become your company's leaders.
In my last four jobs I was employee 2, 5, 3, and 5. So while this is all a bit self serving, you’re the one reading my writing — and I have some experience with who works out in the first ten!
First, we'll examine what they do well (and why they're beneficial for startups), then what they don't, and how to hire them.
First 10 are:
Business partners: Because it's their company, they take care of whatever has to be done and have ideas about how to do it. You can rely on them to always put the success of the firm first because it is their top priority (company success is strongly connected with success for early workers). This approach will eventually take someone to leadership positions.
High Speed Learners: They process knowledge quickly and can reach 80%+ competency in a new subject matter rather quickly. A growing business that is successful tries new things frequently. We have all lost a lot of money and time on employees who follow the wrong playbook or who wait for someone else within the company to take care of them.
Autodidacts learn by trial and error, osmosis, networking with others, applying first principles, and reading voraciously (articles, newsletters, books, and even social media). Although teaching is wonderful, you won't have time.
Self-scaling: They figure out a means to deal with issues and avoid doing the grunt labor over the long haul, increasing their leverage. Great people don't keep doing the same thing forever; as they expand, they use automation and delegation to fill in their lower branches. This is a crucial one; even though you'll still adore them, you'll have to manage their scope or help them learn how to scale on their own.
Free Range: You can direct them toward objectives rather than specific chores. Check-ins can be used to keep them generally on course without stifling invention instead of giving them precise instructions because doing so will obscure their light.
When people are inspired, they bring their own ideas about what a firm can be and become animated during discussions about how to get there.
Novelty Seeking: They look for business and personal growth chances. Give them fresh assignments and new directions to follow around once every three months.
Here’s what the First Ten types may not be:
Domain specialists. When you look at their resumes, you'll almost certainly think they're unqualified. Fortunately, a few strategically positioned experts may empower a number of First Ten types by serving on a leadership team or in advising capacities.
Balanced. These people become very invested, and they may be vulnerable to many types of stress. You may need to assist them in managing their own stress and coaching them through obstacles. If you are reading this and work at Banza, I apologize for not doing a better job of supporting this. I need to be better at it.
Able to handle micromanagement with ease. People who like to be in charge will suppress these people. Good decision-making should be delegated to competent individuals. Generally speaking, if you wish to scale.
Great startup team members have versatility, learning, innovation, and energy. When we hire for the function, not the person, we become dull and staid. Could this person go to another department if needed? Could they expand two levels in a few years?
First Ten qualities and experience level may have a weak inverse association. People with 20+ years of experience who had worked at larger organizations wanted to try something new and had a growth mentality. College graduates may want to be told what to do and how to accomplish it so they can stay in their lane and do what their management asks.
Does the First Ten archetype sound right for your org? Cool, let’s go hiring. How will you know when you’ve found one?
They exhibit adaptive excellence, excelling at a variety of unrelated tasks. It could be hobbies or professional talents. This suggests that they will succeed in the next several endeavors they pursue.
Successful risk-taking is doing something that wasn't certain to succeed, sometimes more than once, and making it do so. It's an attitude.
Rapid Rise: They regularly change roles and get promoted. However, they don't leave companies when the going gets tough. Look for promotions at every stop and at least one position with three or more years of experience.
You can ask them:
Tell me about a time when you started from scratch or achieved success. What occurred en route? You might request a variety of tales from various occupations or even aspects of life. They ought to be energized by this.
What new skills have you just acquired? It is not required to be work-related. They must be able to describe it and unintentionally become enthusiastic about it.
Tell me about a moment when you encountered a challenge and had to alter your strategy. The core of a startup is reinventing itself when faced with obstacles.
Tell me about a moment when you eliminated yourself from a position at work. They've demonstrated they can permanently solve one issue and develop into a new one, as stated above.
Why do you want to leave X position or Y duty? These people ought to be moving forward, not backward, all the time. Instead, they will discuss what they are looking forward to visiting your location.
Any questions? Due to their inherent curiosity and desire to learn new things, they should practically never run out of questions. You can really tell if they are sufficiently curious at this point.
People who see their success as being the same as the success of the organization are the best-case team members, in any market. They’ll grow and change with the company, and always try to prioritize what matters. You’ll find yourself more energized by your work because you’re surrounded by others who are as well. Happy teambuilding!
1 year ago
Understanding several Value Proposition kinds will help you create better goods.
Fixing problems isn't enough.
Numerous articles and how-to guides on value propositions focus on fixing consumer concerns.
Contrary to popular opinion, addressing customer pain rarely suffices. Win your market category too.
Core Value Statement
Value proposition usually means a product's main value.
Its how your product solves client problems. The product's core.
Answering these questions creates a relevant core value proposition:
What tasks is your customer trying to complete? (Jobs for clients)
How much discomfort do they feel while they perform this? (pains)
What would they like to see improved or changed? (gains)
After that, you create products and services that alleviate those pains and give value to clients.
Value Proposition by Category
Your product belongs to a market category and must follow its regulations, regardless of its value proposition.
Creating a new market category is challenging. Fitting into customers' product perceptions is usually better than trying to change them.
New product users simplify market categories. Products are labeled.
Your product will likely be associated with a collection of products people already use.
Example: IT experts will use your communication and management app.
If your target clients think it's an advanced mail software, they'll compare it to others and expect things like:
adequate storage space
list of contacts
If your target users view your product as a task management app, things change. You can survive without a contact list, but not status management.
Find out what your customers compare your product to and if it fits your value offer. If so, adapt your product plan to dominate this market. If not, try different value propositions and messaging to put the product in the right context.
Finished Value Proposition
A comprehensive value proposition is when your solution addresses user problems and wins its market category.
Addressing simply the primary value proposition may produce a valuable and original product, but it may struggle to cross the chasm into the mainstream market. Meeting expectations is easier than changing views.
Without a unique value proposition, you will drown in the red sea of competition.
Find out who your target consumer is and what their demands and problems are.
To meet these needs, develop and test a primary value proposition.
Speak with your most devoted customers. Recognize the alternatives they use to compare you against and the market segment they place you in.
Recognize the requirements and expectations of the market category.
To meet or surpass category standards, modify your goods.
Great products solve client problems and win their category.
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1 year ago
Union LA x Air Jordan 2 “Future Is Now” PREVIEW
With the help of Virgil Abloh and Union LA‘s Chris Gibbs, it's now clear that Jordan Brand intended to bring the Air Jordan 2 back in 2022.
The “Future Is Now” collection includes two colorways of MJ's second signature as well as an extensive range of apparel and accessories.
“We wanted to juxtapose what some futuristic gear might look like after being worn and patina'd,”
Union stated on the collaboration's landing page.
“You often see people's future visions that are crisp and sterile. We thought it would be cool to wear it in and make it organic...”
The classic co-branding appears on short-sleeve tees, hoodies, and sweat shorts/sweat pants, all lightly distressed at the hems and seams.
Also, a filtered black-and-white photo of MJ graces the adjacent long sleeves, labels stitch into the socks, and the Jumpman logo adorns the four caps.
Liner jackets and flight pants will also be available, adding reimagined militaria to a civilian ensemble.
The Union LA x Air Jordan 2 (Grey Fog and Rattan) shares many of the same beats. Vintage suedes show age, while perforations and detailing reimagine Bruce Kilgore's design for the future.
The “UN/LA” tag across the modified eye stays, the leather patch across the tongue, and the label that wraps over the lateral side of the collar complete the look.
The footwear will also include a Crater Slide in the “Grey Fog” color scheme.
On 4/9 and 4/10 from 9am-3pm, Union LA will be giving away a pair of Air Jordan 2s at their La Brea storefront (110 S. LA BREA AVE. LA, CA 90036). The raffle is only open to LA County residents with a valid CA ID. You must enter by 11:59pm on 4/10 to win. Winners will be notified via email.
1 year ago
What is headline inflation?
Headline inflation is the raw Consumer price index (CPI) reported monthly by the Bureau of labour statistics (BLS). CPI measures inflation by calculating the cost of a fixed basket of goods. The CPI uses a base year to index the current year's prices.
As it includes all aspects of an economy that experience inflation, headline inflation is not adjusted to remove volatile figures. Headline inflation is often linked to cost-of-living changes, which is useful for consumers.
The headline figure doesn't account for seasonality or volatile food and energy prices, which are removed from the core CPI. Headline inflation is usually annualized, so a monthly headline figure of 4% inflation would equal 4% inflation for the year if repeated for 12 months. Top-line inflation is compared year-over-year.
Inflation erodes future dollar values, can stifle economic growth, and can raise interest rates. Core inflation is often considered a better metric than headline inflation. Investors and economists use headline and core results to set growth forecasts and monetary policy.
Core inflation removes volatile CPI components that can distort the headline number. Food and energy costs are commonly removed. Environmental shifts that affect crop growth can affect food prices outside of the economy. Political dissent can affect energy costs, such as oil production.
From 1957 to 2018, the U.S. averaged 3.64 percent core inflation. In June 1980, the rate reached 13.60%. May 1957 had 0% inflation. The Fed's core inflation target for 2022 is 3%.
A central bank has privileged control over a nation's or group's money and credit. Modern central banks are responsible for monetary policy and bank regulation. Central banks are anti-competitive and non-market-based. Many central banks are not government agencies and are therefore considered politically independent. Even if a central bank isn't government-owned, its privileges are protected by law. A central bank's legal monopoly status gives it the right to issue banknotes and cash. Private commercial banks can only issue demand deposits.
What are living costs?
The cost of living is the amount needed to cover housing, food, taxes, and healthcare in a certain place and time. Cost of living is used to compare the cost of living between cities and is tied to wages. If expenses are higher in a city like New York, salaries must be higher so people can live there.
What's U.S. bureau of labor statistics?
BLS collects and distributes economic and labor market data about the U.S. Its reports include the CPI and PPI, both important inflation measures.
1 year ago
I created a faceless TikTok account. Six months later.
Follower count, earnings, and more
I created my 7th TikTok account six months ago. TikTok's great. I've developed accounts for Amazon products, content creators/brand deals education, website flipping, and more.
Introverted or shy people use faceless TikTok accounts.
Maybe they don't want millions of people to see their face online, or they want to remain anonymous so relatives and friends can't locate them.
Going faceless on TikTok can help you grow a following, communicate your message, and make money online.
Here are 6 steps I took to turn my Tik Tok account into a $60,000/year side gig.
From nothing to $60K in 6 months
It's clickbait, but it’s true. Here’s what I did to get here.
I've used social media before. I've spent years as a social creator and brand.
I've built Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube accounts to nearly 100K.
How I did it
First, select a niche.
If you can focus on one genre on TikTok, you'll have a better chance of success, however lifestyle creators do well too.
Niching down is easier, in my opinion.
You can narrow these niches if you like.
During the pandemic, a travel blogger focused on Texas-only tourism and gained 1 million subscribers.
Couponing might be a finance specialization.
One of my finance TikTok accounts gives credit tips and grants and has 23K followers.
Tons of ways you can get more specific.
Consider how you'll monetize your TikTok account. I saw many enormous TikTok accounts that lose money.
They can't monetize their niche. Not impossible to commercialize, but tough enough to inhibit action.
First, determine your goal.
In this first step, consider what your end goal is.
Are you trying to promote your digital products or social media management services?
You want brand deals or e-commerce sales.
This will affect your TikTok specialty.
This is the first step to a TikTok side gig.
Step 2: Pick a content style
Next, you want to decide on your content style.
Do you do voiceover and screenshots?
You'll demonstrate a product?
Will you faceless vlog?
Step 3: Look at the competition
Find anonymous accounts and analyze what content works, where they thrive, what their audience wants, etc.
This can help you make better content.
Like the skyscraper method for TikTok.
Step 4: Create a content strategy.
Your content plan is where you sit down and decide:
How many videos will you produce each day or each week?
Which links will you highlight in your biography?
What amount of time can you commit to this project?
You may schedule when to post videos on a calendar. Make videos.
5. Create videos.
No video gear needed.
Using a phone is OK, and I think it's preferable than posting drafts from a computer or phone.
TikTok prefers genuine material.
Use their app, tools, filters, and music to make videos.
And imperfection is preferable. Tik okers like to see videos made in a bedroom, not a film studio.
When making videos, remember this.
I personally use my phone and tablet.
Step 6: Monetize
Lastly, it’s time to monetize How will you make money? You decided this in step 1.
Time to act!
For brand agreements
Include your email in the bio.
Share several sites and use a beacons link in your bio.
Make cold calls to your favorite companies to get them to join you in a TikTok campaign.
Include a link to your store's or a product's page in your bio.
For client work
Include your email in the bio.
Use a beacons link to showcase your personal website, portfolio, and other resources.
For affiliate marketing
Include affiliate product links in your bio.
Join the Amazon Influencer program and provide a link to your storefront in your bio.
$60,000 per year from Tik Tok?
Yes, and some creators make much more.
Tori Dunlap (herfirst100K) makes $100,000/month on TikTok.
My TikTok adventure took 6 months, but by month 2 I was making $1,000/month (or $12K/year).
By year's end, I want this account to earn $100K/year.
Imagine if my 7 TikTok accounts made $100K/year.
7 Tik Tok accounts X $100K/yr = $700,000/year