Innovation isn’t just about the products you bring to market or the flare you use to reach your audience. It’s also, and perhaps most importantly, the way you cultivate a company culture to motivate your employees and better serve your clients.
With 50% of small businesses failing within the first five years, more and more companies are searching for that innovative spark to light a new, prosperous path. And now many are finding that it’s actually a trend that’s been right in front of us all for years.
Implementing a decentralized company structure is about empowering and motivating individuals by giving them more control over their roles and their professional space through remote work.
Here are just some of the benefits of decentralization:
Better pool of workers. Better quality of work.
Who would you rather have working for you: People who need to be watched in order to perform, or a team that’s autonomous, focused and fast?
You’d want the latter — the remote workers. They don’t have to deal with the din and obligatory social distractions in an office setting. They also tend to be self-motivated; because if they get a great job done quickly, they may have a few extra minutes to make a cup of tea or fold some laundry that would otherwise be waiting for them after a long commute home.
And the great thing is removing the geographical requirements means you can hire new talent from anywhere in the country, or even the world. So you have a seemingly endless selection of talent you can choose from based on qualifications, working style and client needs.
By eliminating your dependence on brick-and-mortar environments, you subtract real estate, insurance and utility costs from your balance sheet. Plus your employees don’t need to ask for as high of a salary if they don’t have to afford vehicle and transit expenses or the wardrobe and cosmetics costs of looking presentable day in and day out.
With those cost savings, you could increase your take home, invest more in your business and keep your rates low so you can be an even more cost-efficient choice for prospects — especially compared to competitors that refuse to give up their traditional office space.
Why would an employee choose to endure a long, frustrating commute to sit in a distracting space with unideal lighting, temperature and air quality, when they could transition in and out of their professional mindset in a space that they can freely optimize for whatever makes them feel comfortable, focused and productive?
That’s the value of remote work. It’s about choice — letting employees choose whether they want to work in their sweats, multitask during a meeting or eat something fragrant from their own refrigerator. And that’s precisely the way you build goodwill with employees — you show them you respect their time and their decisions.
The future of work at work today
My company, Rosarium PR & Marketing Collective, is a great example of innovation and decentralization in action. We have zero employees. Instead, everyone who works with us is a contractor who is also a successful business owner. None of them need personal training or oversight, because they already know what it takes to help our clients succeed in business.
Because of the tremendous benefit, those unique credentials bring to Rosarium, we ensure all our team members know they don’t work for us. Instead, they are all talented individuals who work with us in their own work environment, on their schedules and on their terms. In fact, team members are welcome to turn down jobs they don’t want.
They set their own rates based on fair market value. Likewise, they understand workloads fluctuate. That enables Rosarium to adapt seamlessly to changing client needs. It also reduces financial risks during periods of reduced client work, which promotes sustainability during adverse economic conditions.
In short, we don’t reluctantly and begrudgingly dole out flexibility. We proudly celebrate it as a cornerstone of our culture. And that’s been a win-win across the board in terms of morale, creativity and increased productivity.
After all, the best work-life balance is when you feel totally in control of both your work and your life. Rosarium’s innovative model ensures team members have that.
Implementing a decentralized model for your company
Rosarium is just one example of a company that’s thriving through decentralization. Tech companies, marketing agencies, SaaS providers — service-based industries everywhere are turning the decentralization trend into a wave. So why not hop on board?
Here are a few tips for getting started:
Commit to making percentages of your roster remote workers within a certain period of time. Tie that goal to downsizing or eliminating your office space, so you have a timeframe when you’ll realize that aspect of the cost savings.
Create regular one-on-one coaching meetings to address pain points of the transition like fixing and improving technology issues.
When you’re recruiting, make sure you reap the benefits of searching for talent in a region no smaller than your time zone, so you can be sure you’re getting the best of the best.
Most importantly, live the mindsets of flexibility and innovation by thinking outside the boxes I just mentioned. Great things never came from the half-hearted. So think big. Go for it. Achieve those great things. And then celebrate that you are a part of the future of work.
About Alexis Quintal
Alexis Quintal is the owner and CEO of Rosarium PR & Marketing Collective. She has 10 years of experience in sales management and director-level media roles at high-profile institutions like Walmart Media Group and Newswire. In 2020, she left the corporate world to create Rosarium — a company that scales world-class marketing communications solutions to be accessible and affordable for startups of all sizes. Alexis’ goal is to make more entrepreneurs by making it easier to be a successful entrepreneur. Connect with Alexis on LinkedIn here.