The Rise of the Remote Worker

As 2020 rolled around, rumors that people in Wuhan, China were getting sick and dying from some sort of new infectious disease was spreading as fast as the virus itself. Before the worldwide pandemic began to fizzle, almost 107 million Americans had contracted Covid-19 and and 1.2 million, sadly, lost their lives. 

The American workforce also lost something…the will to commute to the office. According to one economist, even though the pandemic is officially over the USA, ¼ of workers have no desire to continue working remotely from home. Period. They want the tools and teamwork, are better able to focus on work without the distractions of home life, and really love being in-person. 

This is good news for the bosses and owners who understand that workplace dynamics encourage socialization and community building, which in turn builds better teams and produces higher output. Plus there are the considerations of the investment in millions of square feet of office space in downtowns and office centers in places like Cincinnati, and the complication of measuring productivity and ROI of remote workers.

Small businesses, like those we service, for the most part, have returned to pre-pandemic work routines earlier than the large corporations. The New York Times reported that in March of 2023, 12 percent of U.S. workers were still fully remote, about 60 percent were fully in office, and 28 percent were in a hybrid custom arrangement.

Remote workers are especially valuable in technology, marketing, accounting/finance, project management, medical/health, recruiting, and customer service. If you or someone you know is looking for a “remote worker” position in the Cincinnati area, check out Built In, the online community for startups and tech companies.

4 Traits: Successful Business Owners

You may have started your business on a great idea, a particular skill set, or a burning desire to fill void in the marketplace. Whether you are the definition of an entrepreneur, inherited a family business, or are simply a natural leader seeking success, you probably have a few of these traits most small business owners need.

  1. Always look forward. A natural leader is always asking herself or himself, where will I be five, ten years from now? What can I do better now to assure myself that my business and my employees and customers will be better off because of the decisions I make today? A forward-looking business owner refuses to get stuck making the same mistakes or wrong moves, nor is willing to accept the same income and profits year after year.
  2. Communicate effectively. When employees or staff understand what you expect from them, they are more likely to live up to expectations. Sharing your long term vision for the company helps employees see where they fit into the big picture and are more likely to work better as individuals and as a team.
  3. Delegate work when at all possible. Of course, this means that first you need to hire smart, talented people who want to grow their own professional skills. Hiring top talent yet refusing to delegate important tasks hurts morale and eventually staff retention. Delegating saves time, helps develop more productive employees, reduces turnover, and inspires everyone to do their best.
  4. Make mistakes. We all do—we’re not perfect! If you run a business, you will make mistakes. The upside is that mistakes present excellent opportunities for a lifetime of learning, getting better at what we do. Mistakes move us to learn, to be fearless, to be successful.

Obviously, the “traits” may not stop here, but these are our favorites, and a fun and fitting way to wish all our clients and friends a Happy and Prosperous 2023!

Small Business Trends for 2023

Every year, the Small Business Administration (SBA) publishes their thoughts on small business trends for the coming year. We’ve read the report and want to share a few that may apply to your business. If they don’t, they may still apply to your competitors, so it’s good to stay informed. 

2023 number and red question mark on wooden cube block on wood table in room background. Next year planning concept.

1. E-commerce and social commerce continue to boom. 

More than half of global internet users purchase something online every week and it appears those numbers will only grow. Social media has emerged as a serious player. Smart marketers are taking the best of eCommerce and combining it with social media on platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest. We agree that, depending on your product or service, it could be time to adjust your sales model accordingly. 

2. Marketing  online is a must. Still, 60% of customers still want to see, touch, feel and try products before buying. Considering that half of retail shoppers use self-checkout or online forms to enroll or purchase services, it’s time to bone up on marketing your business online. ReferralRock’s article on How the Internet Helps Small Businesses Stay Competitive is a worthwhile read. 

3. Data collection is and will always be a customer concern. We all want to be assured that our information is secure. Protect your clients and customers and build a reputation for trust by installing a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate on your website. Let Forbes list the top services you can trust.  

4. Customer experience is still #1. Research shows that customers value experience over both price and product quality.

Whether over the phone, online or in-person, the customer experience has to be the focus of your strategy. Forbes recently published a great article: 7 Customer-Experience-Related Predictions for 2023. Though published on December 14th, Southwest Airlines evidently failed to read the article.  

All of us at DLMoneyMatters want to wish you a very happy, prosperous, healthy, and exciting 2023. As always, we are a phone call, email, or text message away. Happy New Year!