By Catherine Lang-Cline
We are in the second half of 2020 and it seems that we are going to have COVID-19 for longer than we expected, meaning, we still have a lot of people working virtually. For some companies, working virtually has been a whole new adventure. For others, it hasn’t been challenging at all. Working virtually is not new to us. Creative people have been freelancing and contracting for years now.
Kristen Harris and I have had Portfolio Creative for 15 years and this is the first year the entire team was virtual. But in the years before starting our company, we were very comfortable with talent that worked virtually, even when it was ourselves that were doing it. That is because creative people have always worked differently. Think about the Mad Men days in advertising. When they needed extra hands and minds on a project, they called in for more help. Those people would come in and work on a campaign and they were never considered employees. If the agency won the client they simply continued to work with them as a freelancer or they hired them. If they no longer needed them they moved on. It was a different way to work and it did work.
Fast forward to new tech and new lifestyles. When the internet went public in 1991 that changed everything. Files could be moved around electronically and you never had to leave your desk. Therefore, it didn’t matter where you worked and creative people took full advantage of this new technology. With the sound of buzzing, beeps, and static we transferred files, fonts, and images over phone lines and then dedicated computer lines. We could work anywhere and with the best talent in the country, virtually.
Today, Portfolio Creative works with thousands of creatives that all have the capability to work as freelancers and to work virtually. We see portfolios and resumes and paperwork all through the internet. Everything is virtual. So when we were asked by our Governor to work from home, it was an easy transition because we were all already set up to do so. It was also an easy transition for many of our current clients because the talent that we placed with them was more than familiar with working from home and was completely equipped to do so, too.
Here is where you and your company growth comes in because we can help you grow your marketing department without adding a chair. What better time than now, during a pandemic, to communicate with your clients, with the help of virtual content writers, social media specialists, or designers. Maybe you need to change your website so your clients can now e-shop with you? We know exactly the right people to do it because we have always done it.
The biggest question we always get is, “How do I know that they are working?” (Oddly, this is really the same question that is asked when people are working in the office, but today we are only focusing on virtual.) The answer is that even though there is not any “facetime,” people can be monitored with set goals, check-ins, and great communication. There are also timesheets that can be made available in case you need to have it recorded. Good management is key and good management doesn’t come from being in an office. But in the slim chance that you have a person that you really don’t trust, then we need to talk. Ultimately, almost every person wants to contribute and do a great job when given the chance.
As business owners, we can’t let anything stop our forward motion when solutions are available. Especially solutions that don’t require new desks, equipment, and office space. Virtual has been tested for years, we have your solutions and the answers to many more of your questions. Connect with us and let’s all get back to business.