1. Pay for your stock images
Does anything look more pathetic than poor stock images? Free stock images can be great for nonspecific uses in minor projects, but this is your branding we’re talking about! Even interior shots of shiny office spaces can look drab or disappointing if they aren’t taken professionally. Since free stock photo sites rarely pay their photographers at all, the ‘professional’ element isn’t going to be there.
2. Take a real staff photo
Putting a staff portrait somewhere, preferably in an “About Us” section can help make a personal connection that puts clients at ease. Traditionally this happens when they go to your office and shake your hand. Since that’s not an option here, the photo grows more important. Seeing that photo and then recognizing the person they speak to within it can be a great comfort. Include everyone you have, even the person answering phones from home. The bigger your staff looks, the better.
Don’t have a staff? Find a good-quality, professional photo of yourself. No selfies!
3. Encourage virtual contact in your copy
One of the simplest mistakes people make when running a virtual office is including the words ‘come see us!’ in their website and sales copy. However, you don’t want to ask clients to do that because what can be interpreted literally probably will be interpreted literally. Nobody feels good when they find out the office of a company they’ve been giving money to doesn’t exist.
4. Hire a virtual secretary
Funneling a majority of your external communications through a single gatekeeper can make your life and the lives of your staff much easier. On top of that, a secretary can make a company seem much more professional with their very presence. This person can work from home or another outside location just like any other staff, as long as they have an easy way to transfer calls and forward messages to the appropriate people.
5. Maintain an actual workspace
There are so many reasons that maintaining a clean, organized work environment for yourself is important. Not only does it boost productivity and help ward off the work-from-home blues, but it gives you a professional space for when you need it. More importantly, it sets you up to make a good impression during video calls, a staple form of communication for anyone working out of a virtual office. Your smiling face will put your clients at ease, but empty Doritos bags and a cluttered home office that is clearly doubling as the baby’s room in the background will have the opposite effect.
6. Make arrangements for internal communications
It can be hard to take a team of independent workers and make them move in turn, so establishing how you want people to contact one another is a good place to start. Emails, a networked phone system, a particular chat function; these are all great ways to keep everyone on the same page.
7. Don’t abandon face to face meetings with staff
Often called ‘hermit syndrome,’ this is a problem that independent workers face all the time. When work doesn’t force you to meet with clients and interact with co-workers regularly, communication can start falling flat.
If at all possible, meet regularly with your staff. This will result in a better workflow, improved conflict resolution, and better brainstorming.
If you think a virtual office is the right choice for your business, click here to gain more: http://www.servcorp.com.my/en/virtual-offices/