Apart from being more efficient, making your business location-independent opens up many new possibilities that you probably haven’t even considered before. For instance, you would be able to live a life of a digital nomad, relocating and traveling the world without disrupting your operations. Aside from this, you get the privilege of a target market that’s not location-dependent, which means that it doesn’t have a max-cap when it comes to the number of potential customers. Finally, the talent pool you get to dip into, once you finally decide to hire, is virtually unlimited. With that in mind and without further ado, here are several tips that can help you set up and run your own location-independent business.
1. Proper equipment
The first thing you need to understand is that as a digital nomad or on-the-move entrepreneur, your gear will be your office, which is why you need to invest in proper equipment. What this means is that you should get as tech-savvy as possible. First of all, you need a solid computer and going for a gaming laptop might be the safest choice. Apart from having a setup to run even the most demanding of software, it usually has a formidable battery and a top-notch cooling system that you’ll definitely need if you intend to work from a tropical location.
Aside from a laptop, you also need a reliable smartphone. Here, yet again, the battery is paramount but so is the network connectivity. After all, you need a device from which you can check your emails, account balance and even access your team’s collaboration tool if the need arises. At the very end, those who read a lot (scripts, whitepapers, etc.) probably want to get an e-reader as well. Sure, an ordinary tablet might also be able to fill this role but the glare-free touch screen should definitely be a deal-breaker. In fact, those who prefer working while abroad might even find it worth their while to get a waterproof device, while they’re at it.
2. Work environment
In most cases, a business nomad imagines running a location-independent business in an idealized scenario where they lay next to the pool with a laptop in their lap and a cocktail in their hand, occasionally looking at the screen. While these instances are possible, they’re not as common as you might think. After all, work requires focus and this hypothetical environment simply presents you with too many distractions. This is why, it might be worth your while to look for a temporary office solution, whenever you change your location.
Let’s say for a second that you decide to move your operations to NSW. The best course of action in this situation would be to look for a serviced office in Sydney or at least consider optimizing your hotel/rented room for this purpose. Working from a park bench may seem more cost-efficient and even cheaper but you can’t trust a public Wi-Fi and you might not be able to perform in these circumstances. Apart from this, if you are forced to make a conference call, it’s much more impressive to have an actual office in the background than to converse with your partners and clients from a coffee shop.
3. Incredible chance for networking
As we already mentioned, as an entrepreneur behind a location-independent business, you’ll see the world as your playground. In order to capitalize on this notion, you need to make contacts wherever you go. Some platforms are specialized in finding local events, however, merely enlisting and mingling isn’t enough. While a digital nomad may believe that there’s a tech-savvy solution even to networking, face-to-face meetings are undeniably more effective, even in this day and age.
Regardless of how good your people-skills are, you might know nothing about the local business etiquette and you would be surprised to learn that the manners you brought from your homeland might not apply in every situation. Norms are not intuitive, they are social constructs, which means that you’ll have to actively study them in order to be able to apply them.
Finally, a routine is probably the greatest ally of productivity, yet, it would be hard to establish a routine while running as a location-independent business. For instance, while you know you should get up at 5 AM or 6 AM, deep down inside, you know that you don’t have work hours but deadlines and that you could very well get up at 10 AM instead. This is a habit that you have to shake off as soon as possible if you want to make it. Wake up early and try to organize your 24-hour cycle as efficiently as you can. On the other hand, try to make it flexible in order to adjust your schedule to the present circumstances.
As you can see, while running a location-independent business does have its advantages, it’s not all sunshine and roses either. Making it work takes a remarkable amount of organization, dedication and, above all, discipline. Without these, you risk neglecting your business and, in this way, risking the integrity of your entire lifestyle of a digital nomad. With the right amount of motivation, nevertheless, you just might be able to make it work.
Lauren Wiseman is marketing specialist, contributor to bizzmarkblog.com and entrepreneur. She helps clients grow their personal and professional brands in fast-changing and demanding market, strongly believing in a holistic approach to business.