10 Tools To Help Run Your Business From Anywhere In The World

Manage Your Business and Virtual Team Wherever You Are

Work Anywhere in the World
With a few tools, you can work anywhere in the world. PhotoAlto/Sigrid Olsson | Getty Images

There’s a movement growing in the world of entrepreneurship: the remote work movement. More and more companies are ditching the 9 to 5 office model for something more flexible—the distributed model. Companies such as 37Signals, GitHub, and Toptal, just to name a few, are taking up the cause of remote work, allowing employees the flexibility to work from wherever they want, whenever they want.

There is a great deal of research on the issue, and if you trust the numbers (which, why wouldn’t you?

It’s science), results indicate that the distributed model is the way of the future. A study from Inc. (infographic) shows that employees are up to 20% more productive on creative tasks when they work remotely, and studies from GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics show that allowing employees to telecommute can save a company upwards of $11,000 per person. So going remote can increase productivity and save lots of money.

As a home based entrepreneur, you can gain same flexibility and savings when hiring remote employees or contract workers to help you. Here’s 10 tools to help you run your business from anywhere in the world.

GitHub

GitHub is a live collaborative tool for distributed teams working on major coding projects. It’s a great way for teams to stay on the same page and checking on projects to catch issues or bugs. If your company has tech projects, this one’s a must.

Slack

At its basic core, Slack is a group communication app and so much more.

Slack is a virtual office space, the digital watercooler if you will. You can run multiple work feeds at one time and team members can chat feeds by topic or by project. If you used GitHub to work on code with your team members, updates made on your team’s GitHub page would automatically appear on your Slack feed.

Slack offers a way to keep an eye on all your projects, what people are saying about them, how it’s progressing, and what needs your attention.

Basecamp

37Signals is the genius behind Basecamp, the project management tool to end all project management tools. It’s not free, but fairly affordable when you consider it’s less expensive than office space. Basecamp has more functionality than can be listed in this article, but, to name a few, you can have individual and group to-do lists, assignable tasks, file sharing, milestones, messaging, and more. Much like Slack, Basecamp is also great for integrating other group project programs you use.

Toptal

Toptal provides a network of freelance programmers to help you with your tech needs. It personally matches you with developers based on the specifications of your project and team. It’s a win-win because developers receive fair pay and diverse work, while companies are guaranteed quality work.

World Time Buddy

One of the biggest challenges to working with groups of people remotely around the world is communicating across time zones. The solution is World Time Buddy. It’s a very simple web and mobile app that shows your time and the times in other places of the world you have workers in.

Trello

Long, confusing email threads are hard to track and sort. Fortunately, there’s Trello. Trello acks like a giant virtual bulletin board that’s keeps track of medium- to long-term projects. Divide up tasks by upcoming, in progress, and released so you can easily see the current status of projects.

iDoneThis

Another challenge to having virtual teams, especially if you’re the boss, is knowing what everyone is doing daily. It’s a daunting task to get everyone’s laundry list of activities they worked on that day. iDoneThis has got you covered. A nice complement to Trello, iDoneThis is a daily to-do list tracker in which employees reply to an email reminder with the tasks they accomplished that day, and once everyone’s replied, you get an easy-to-read digest of all the work your team completed.

It’s keeps everyone accountable, even if they’re on the other side of the world.

Google Calendar

Google Calendar is one of many free tool home-based entrepreneurs can use for sharing schedules. Through shared calendars, you not only know what projects your team members are working on, but also you know when they’re away from work, or when they have a conference or meeting scheduled. It automatically incorporates the local time zones of each user, to avoid confusion when working with people around the world.

Skype

Skype is one of the most effective tools for connecting workers—voices, faces, everything—no from anywhere in the world there is Internet access. With Skype you can do weekly group  conference calls or check in with specific workers individually. You can use it to interview potential virtual workers, as well as to train them. One perk of Skype is the personal, face-to-face (if using video), voice-to-voice connection that can you and your team feel engaged together.

Nomad List

Planning a trip and want to know how remote-worker friendly your destination is? Nomad List is a database of just about every major city across the globe. Each city is rated based on its accessibility for digital nomads. It provides information on a city’s cost of living, general safety, strength of available wifi, intensity of nightlife, and more. It’s a go-to resource any time you’re ready to explore somewhere new.