I’ve been running a remote business for seven years now. When people find out that I’m not tied down to a nine-to-five, they’re usually pretty envious. But it’s not all fun and games- running a remote business can be stressful.
Along with the challenges of time zone confusion, running a remote business can also be difficult when it comes to finding new clients and keeping regular money coming in the door.
Here are some top tips for running a remote business:
Understand the legalities
While you may not be living in your home country, it’s likely that you have some tax obligations at home. This may be as simple as ensuring you’re a non-tax resident (New Zealand). If you’re American, you’ll pay tax on any worldwide income. That means that you should ensure you’re tax compliant- or you could be in big trouble with your home country.
Choose a schedule
Some people are early birds, and some are night owls. But when you’re running your own business, you definitely need to have a solid schedule in place. I quickly learned that slacking off during the week simply meant I would have to work weekends to make up for it (and that’s no fun.)
Not to mention, most of your clients and customers are likely to be on the typical Monday to Friday, 9-5 schedule.
When you work for yourself, it can be difficult to create work/life balance. That’s because unlike a normal job, there’s always work to be done. Before you know it, you’re working 80 hour weeks and wondering why you feel burnt out. Take time out to cook, go to the gym, watch new TV releases, and relax. That way, you’ll avoid burnout and be more productive in the long term.
The best thing I ever did was make a commitment to stop working weekends. If something comes up and I can’t work a day during the week, I’ll replace it with a Saturday work day. But Sundays are sacred.
Set smart goals
If you’re living in a country with lower living costs than your home country, it can be easy to simply ‘get by.’ After all, lower living costs and a greater bang for your buck can make it easy to slack off. That’s why it’s a good idea to set goals that will help your business grow each year. Make sure you create solid milestones that will ensure you’re working towards those goals.