Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

Tech Toys to Run Your Lean, Mean, Portable Office

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No one officially designated coffee shops the modern workspace, but we made them our second office anyway. Technology has unglued us from our desks and given us the freedom to work anywhere on the planet. The only limitations in 2016 are bosses who aren’t yet comfortable with the inevitable trend.

But while major corporations are sluggish to adopt work from home or similar policies, startups and small businesses embrace them with open arms. Forrester Research’s U.S. Telecommuting Forecast projects that 63 million Americans will work from home in 2016—that’s 43 percent of the workforce.

Think about that number for a moment, almost half of working Americans not commuting to a physical office each morning. That’s because property and maintenance are huge expenses for companies and small businesses—the ones who need to make every dollar count—making them more open to a work-from-home culture.

However, it does take more than a table top and cup of coffee to successfully work offsite. Equip yourself with the right tools to get the job done, perhaps even better than you would in the office.

Community Workspaces

Coffee shops and cafes will do the job, but at the end of the day they’re still designed for coffee and baked treats—not work. They’re often crowded, loud, and the tables are rarely laid out to get much done. If you have a coffee shop you love, then don’t fix what’s not broken. But in light of the new boom in remote work, community spaces are opening up around the country that cater to these needs.

Gangplank, a popular group of community spaces in Arizona, run completely off donations and volunteer work, and offer workspaces, meeting rooms, equipment, and even studios for podcasts, photography, and video shoots. Spaces like these not only give people a place to work, but also an opportunity to network with peers in the same industry (something you’ll never get at a coffee shop).

A Multifunctional Laptop

The laptop computer for the remote worker is like the knife for a chef or the backpack for a mountaineer. A good laptop computer is the key ingredient to your mobile office setup and you need one that can do everything.

Bigger batteries, better screens, and more power will always be on the forefront of competitive features for laptops, but companies like Lenovo are creating new ways to make these machines more versatile than ever. It’s Yoga series seamlessly transforms between laptop and touchscreen tablet to give users options in any scenario.

Collaboration Software

The biggest argument against work from home is that it prevents employees from face-to-face collaboration, and if this wasn’t 2016, that would be a good argument. But there are tools that don’t just make collaboration on the road possible, they actually make it better.

For project and task management, websites like Trello create a digital kanban board to give everyone on the project control and visibility on each task until the project is complete. GoToMeeting lets co-workers video conference and screen share from anywhere in the the world. Cloud storage services like Dropbox offer business plans so colleagues can store and share documents with ease. There are hundreds of services just like these that equip workers with the tools to perform like champions on the road.

Posted on January 27th, 2016 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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