Hear how to make your business better, remotely
It should be no surprise to you that as an anthropologist specializing in helping companies change, I loved my interview with Liam Martin. As we’ve all experienced, the pandemic has dramatically changed what we think of as “normal.” In particular, the meaning of work has changed and continues to, as each generation moves into the workforce with different values, beliefs and behaviors. Businesses, both small and large, are trying to recruit, retain and develop their talent pool, only to find that today’s workers have very different ideas about what matters to them, reflecting fundamental societal questions about what “really matters” to each of us. Enjoy.
Watch and listen to our conversation here
Today’s podcast contains very valuable data, information and insights about how to manage a remote or hybrid workforce
My guest Liam Martin, co-founder of a remote-first company which grew eight figures with people in 43 different countries and no office, says, “Remote work has been our way of working for more than 10 years. We observed that almost 99% of new remote companies during the pandemic could not figure out one thing common to all successful remote-first companies: asynchronous communication, the bedrock of every successful remote business.
Here are a few of the new counterintuitive principles Liam and I discuss:
- Introverts climb to the top faster in remote-first companies because their thoughtfulness is seen as an asset, not a liability.
- In remote-first organizations, charismatic leaders are not required; in fact, charisma is one of the biggest barriers to business growth, regardless of whether the company is remotely located or not.
- Remote teams operate on autonomy, and contrary to popular belief, the more automated measurements you have within your organization, the more freedom you have.
- Remote-first companies have, on average, half as many managers as on-premises companies. Management in remote first-organizations is redundant.
Enjoy our conversation. Rethink your own organization.
It may be time to change. Perhaps we can help you visualize a new business model for the future—which is really today! Please contact us here.
Want to know more about successfully taking your company remote? Start here.
- Blog: How Are You Changing How You Work? Is It Working?
- Blog: The Future Of Work: 5 Most Important Trends To Watch
- Blog: Virtual Organizations, Hybrid Organizations, And The Most Amazing Workplaces For Tomorrow?
- Podcast: Teresa Douglas—Unleashing Those Secrets To Working Remotely
Additional resources for you
- My two award-winning books: Rethink: Smashing The Myths of Women in Business
and On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights
- Our website: Simon Associates Management Consultants
Read the transcript of our podcast here
Andi Simon: Welcome to On the Brink With Andi Simon. Hi, I’m Andi Simon. As you know, I’m your host and your guide. I’m also a bit of an explorer. And I go looking for really interesting people who are going to help you see, feel and think in ways so you can soar. These are indeed fast-changing times and so the more unusual people I can bring to you, the happier I am. I’m amazed at where people are listening to our podcasts. So thank you, you’ve pushed us to the top 5% of podcasts across the globe and that’s a pretty impressive place to be. And we’re now at 327 podcasts, so we just keep going, trying to find great folks.
Today I’m quite honored to have Liam Martin with me. Liam has a very interesting story to share with you about the world that we’re in. And I’m going to ask him some questions about what is work, what’s remote work. I have my own clients who are trying to bring their employees back into the office. And the employees are saying, “Why?” And they’re saying, “Why not? We miss you.” And they say, “But we don’t miss the commute. And we don’t mind working out of the house, and we’re getting much more productive and we’re actually having a life.” It’s a very interesting time, even as we go post-pandemic. It’s hard to know what’s going on and who’s coming back, and how to use remote and what we’ve learned wisely. And I think that’s the lesson to be learned today.
So let me introduce you to Liam. Liam is a serial entrepreneur. He runs something called Time Doctor and staff.com, one of the most popular time-tracking and productivity software platforms in use by top brands today. He’s also co-organizer of the world’s largest remote work conference, Running Remote, and he’ll tell you a little bit about it because it’s already happened. I think you’re going to wait for next year to make sure you can get there as well. Liam is an avid proponent of remote work and has published in all the major publications. He targets expansion of remote work, not because it’s a gig but because it really does work for work. And I’ve been talking and doing research a lot about what is work, where do we work? When is the home not a home? How can we talk about life-work balance? It’s sort of blended, and the pandemic was a catalytic moment for change. And I love change. But it’s also been a catalytic moment for wondering about the core values we’ve got. Liam, thank you for joining me today.
Liam Martin: Thanks for having me, Andi. I’m super excited to be able to get into this subject, because I think we’re going to be able to get a little bit deeper than the average podcast.
Andi Simon: Well, I think that’s what I hope to do. I refuse to say: give me three things to talk about. You have a new book out called Running Remote. And it’s focused on remote work methodology. And it’s a revolutionary guide. And for the listener and the viewer, it is revolutionary because it isn’t simply about what you ought to do, it’s also how you should do it and why you should do it. But it raises those fundamental questions we’re asking, like, what is work? And how do you get it done? And then how do you review the people who are working this way? And what are all the four things that we have in our company? Liam, tell us about you. Who’s Liam, how’d you get here? Why is remote work so important to you?
Liam Martin: So first off, I’m currently in a chalet in northern Canada. I’m from French Canada. So I’m fluent in both French and English. And I’ve been working remotely for almost 20 years. I definitely was doing it before everyone thought it was cool. And the reason why I was doing that was, I actually dropped out of my Ph.D. They gave me a professorship, which was a master’s degree for dropping out. And I remember teaching my very first class at McGill University. I was incredibly excited about this because this is where I was going in my career. I started with 300 students and ended up with less than 150. And the worst academic reviews in the history of the department. The department had been up and running for 186 years. So pretty bad.
I remember walking into my supervisor’s office and looking him very squarely in the face and I said, “I don’t think I’m very good at this.” And he said, “No, you are not.” And I said, “Okay, so what do you think I should do?” He said, “You have to get pretty good at this teaching thing over the next 10 to 20 years before you get to do anything really fun. So figure out how to get better at that or figure out how to do something else.”
Six weeks later, after I put a master’s thesis under his door, I was out into the real world. And that’s where I actually started my very first business which was an online tutoring company. And I grew that to dozens of tutors throughout North America and Europe, but I ended up actually really working for the business. I was working 18-hour days. I remember actually chipping one of my teeth. When I went to the dentist to be able to check the tooth, you sat down, you’ve got the big white light, the chair that goes back, and the dentist gasped. And it’s never a good idea when a health professional gasps when they look at you. He said, “Liam, which tooth are you talking about? You’ve chipped almost all of your teeth.” He felt that I had pancreatic cancer because I had had X-rays the year before in which my teeth were perfect. And it was from stress. I was grinding my teeth at night, and grinding them into chalk. So he said, “Figure out how to do this remote work thing better, figure out how to do a business better.”
And that’s where I really started to unlock the secrets of remote work. I’ve now grown multiple businesses to eight figure run rates and beyond. We have team members in 44 different countries all over the world. And I’m really excited about our mission statement, which is empowering the world’s transition towards remote work. Everything that we do feeds into that.
Andi Simon: That is just fascinating. But I also remember teaching my first class at Queens College. I had 300 students in the room. And when I was done, my professor came up to me, Dr. Silverman said to me, “You’ll do.” And I wasn’t quite sure what that meant other than spend 10 years as an academic and get my tenure. And I had really rave reviews, except for an occasional non-rave. But then I too left to get into business. I wasn’t going to do the same thing in academia for the rest of my life, the idea of being tenured was a very high mark to achieve and then something that I didn’t want to pursue. And business has been quite fascinating in terms of change.
When you did this, it was early in the remote world, you could see opportunities there. And I’m curious, because as you began to build the companies around this, you learned some things that became really quite a passion of yours, and really probably the substance of your book. So before we get into your book, some of the insights that came from that early business and the remote work workplace.
Liam Martin: So for me, I’m always really good at figuring out trends that are moving up into the light. The problem for me, however, is, I don’t know how fast they’re moving. So are we talking about the market expanding at 2% per year, 10% per year, just to kind of give you context. In February of 2020, 4% of the US workforce was working remotely. By March, 45% of the US workforce was working remotely. That’s the biggest transition in work since the industrial revolution. But the industrial revolution took 80 years. And we did that in March. So a complete change of everything that we know as it applies to work.
Just a month ago, the US Census actually collected a new data set with regards to remote work, and identified that 7% of the US workforce is currently working remotely. But if you include hybrid work, it’s 32% of the US workforce, and less than 10% of that workforce is working remotely due to the pandemic. So over 90% are working, because they want to be able to work from home. So we’re at a really interesting transition phase where a lot of people are being pushed back to the office, they’re being pushed back to these hybrid work agreements, even though they don’t really want to be able to do them. And I think that that feeds into the core of the big problem that we had during the pandemic, which was that instead of actually adopting remote work, we simply recreated the office at home.
Andi Simon: Well, yes, we did. Because when in doubt, you know, mimic. Humans are great monkeys. And we knew what we knew. But we were very attached to it. But we may not even have liked it. And now we had something new that we had no idea about, there were no models. So we had to figure out something. There are a couple of problems that have developed. One of which is the worker at home having to navigate. I had my own clients who were trying to navigate family and work and their own self-care. You had your managers who were trying to figure out how to make sure the work got done. And they were also trying to figure out how to evaluate how the work got done and if it got done well.
One gentleman said to me, “I used to go out and have coffee with my folks and I learned what they were doing. I don’t know how to do that now.” And I asked him, “That’s the basis on which you evaluated?” And he said, “Yeah, that was pretty much how I evaluated them.” I said, “Well, one wonders whether that was good, or now it’s bad.”
So you had the managers and you had the important performance evaluation. And they were working with a group and they are lonely, but they don’t want to come back to the office. And so how do you develop a community of remote workers? And how do you do it in such a way as they can begin to develop the trust they need to know who to go to for what kind of problems? So I have a hunch. These are issues that you saw happening, and maybe even have some suggestions about. Can you take me through it any which way? How do you do it at home? How do you manage it? How do you evaluate it? Or how do you build a business? What do you see happening?
Liam Martin: Yeah, there’s a lot to unpack there. So you’re actually addressing all of the problems that we saw when we were developing this book. The first one, which I think is the most important, is, How do you measure success inside of a remote-first organization. And one of the issues that I personally had to deal with because I’ve come from the remote work world, I’ve been doing remote work for almost 20 years, I’ve actually never worked inside of an office. I think, technically, the last time I worked inside of an office was when I got that horrible review, in grad school teaching a first year Sociology course. And the philosophy inside of remote-first organizations, it’s the third tenant of what we identify in our book, is detailed metrics. So every single individual inside of our organization has a quantifiable, longitudinal metric that is actually collected by the platform, and not necessarily by the individual. And inside of that, we have a philosophy that we like to call radical transparency, where everyone gets access to that information.
So when you join an asynchronous remote organization, you actually don’t just get access to what you do or what your department does, but you get access to everything in the organization. The saying is, Can we give you the same informational advantage as the CEO of the company, which is sometimes very difficult for people that live in a synchronous 20th century MBA mindset to get their heads around. But what it does provide to you is, the measurement is actually the platform’s responsibility, not the managers. So you have this clear third perspective, and the conversations that happen between managers and employees are, “Your numbers are not where they need to be, I need to be able to help you to get those numbers to where they need to be because I don’t control those numbers, I don’t control the judgment as to whether or not you succeed or not, these numbers are actually predefined. So we need to be able to work together to be able to get you to where you need to go,’ which aligns you with the manager. So you, the manager, is not judging you. It’s the platform that’s judging you.
But more importantly, actually, the manager is also being judged, and in the same way, because the manager is saying, “Well, all your direct reports,” where the person above them would say, “All of these numbers don’t necessarily seem to be working out and this other department is doing better than you. You might be the problem as the manager.” So qualitative versus quantitative measures. Qualitative measures don’t really exist inside of asynchronous teams. And we think that that is an advantage.
Andi Simon: Now clarify something for our viewers: what does it mean to be asynchronous? I want to go back to your data as data-driven performance. But asynchronous means what?
Liam Martin: So fundamentally, it just means building a business without interacting with people simultaneously, or what we call synchronously. But I can give you a good example that kind of alludes to this. I don’t know how old you are, but I remember when, back in the day, I would have to watch Friends every Friday at 8:30pm because I knew that if I missed Friends, on Monday I wouldn’t be in the conversations that everyone was having because in that episode, you got to find out what Chandler does this week. And sometimes I’d show up at 8:40 and I missed the first 10 minutes of Friends. So I’d have to take another six months before I could check out a rerun of that particular episode. That is synchronous communication at its core.
Asynchronous communication and management is more like the Netflix model. So the information is available for you, documented in a digitized platform and it’s available to every employee to consume when it’s most advantageous to them to consume it, not on a timetable of the manager or the organization. So you as a worker can say, “Well, I don’t really want to meet at 3pm to be able to do this meeting because I’m really in a good flow state right now and I’m completing a project, so I can watch the recording or I can read the minutes of that particular meeting at 8pm when it’s most advantageous for me to be able to consume that information.” It’s a very, very small shift in the way that you think but it creates a massive increase in overall productivity by our data.
And again, I looked at approximately three dozen companies that are asynchronous at this point and some of the most successful companies in the world, by the way, are asynchronous. WordPress is asynchronous, GitLab is asynchronous, Shopify is in part asynchronous. These are massive companies that run like 30-40% of the internet and they have no zoom calls. They have no phone calls. They all are autonomous nodes in the system because they know exactly what they need to achieve and they have the information available to them through the platform and in order to be able to actually achieve those particular goals. So we see in our data that the average organization is about 33% more productive. And we define productivity by the amount of hard problems that organizations can solve.
One of the big philosophical frameworks inside of the book that’s been passed around inside of the remote work community for years is a book called Deep Work by Cal Newport. And so we use that at scale. And we’re finding that those organizations are 33% more efficient. They cost about 50% less than their on-premise counterparts. And they’re generally going to be a lot more effective as we move forward. And if you’re not doing this right now, this is probably why you’ve had difficulty in the past actually deploying remote work at scale.
Andi Simon: Now go a little deeper here because as we talk about developing talent, we talk about humans needing autonomy. They need to be in control. They need to believe that it’s fair, that there’s a fairness lead there. They need to protect their status, they need some certainty. And then they need the mastery, and they need the relationships. That human brain, you don’t make decisions based upon what we call score. Nobody needs their status protected. I need my certainty, my autonomy, my relationships and my fairness.
As you’re talking, I’m saying to myself, Well, this is really fascinating because asynchronous management businesses enable people who are able to become quite autonomous, master their jobs, get the kind of fairness that they require because it’s not biased. It’s based on the data. You do it or you don’t and then they can begin to build the relationships. They need to get their work done, as opposed to the artificial meetings of the past, where you came together, even though there was nothing to discuss, no agenda or takeaways from it. You’re smiling and been in too many of those.
Liam Martin: I have a saying , which is, No agenda, no agenda. That’s my mindset with regards to that kind of stuff. I mean, this is so difficult for people to get their minds around. And it was very, very difficult, by the way, for me to be able to, for the first time ever, be exposed to a synchronous environment in which I would sit around with eight other people in a room. And maybe two of those people would talk for 90 minutes, and then we would leave. And I would think to myself, “Why was I here? I could have written four blog posts or done two podcasts during that time. Why am I here? This could have been an email.”
Andi Simon: I was an executive at a hospital, I moved from banking to healthcare, and same thing. We would come to meetings, no agenda, no takeaways or work to be done. An FYI kind of meeting I guess. But coming from the outside, which never has straight meetings, and now, it was one of those, what am I supposed to do here? Why am I spending the time? And then I watch people selectively omit the meetings, which is a whole other strategy. But they’re also talking about their behavior, and I can get the job done without being synchronous. I couldn’t get it done with being an autonomous individual capable of doing this. So take me through your book a little bit. I love the asynchronous part. Other parts to it that your listeners here should know about that you want to make sure they share, because I have a hunch you want them to become remote workers.
Liam Martin: Yeah, so really there’s three core tenants of the book and it’s very simple, because we’ve seen so many books come out about remote work. There’s actually 27 coming out this quarter, based on what my publisher is telling me. And there’s no book on asynchronous work. There’s no book on asynchronous management, which is a real shame because I actually think it’s the core of what all of these real pioneers were doing before the pandemic and this really was a bit of a kind of qualitative journey for me.
Looking at all of these different companies and identifying where the trend lines were, I was trying to identify the signal. And then we talked about asynchronous work and I realized every single company that was successful was deploying what I call asynchronous management at scale. So there’s three core fundamental pieces to it. There’s deliberate over-communication, democratized workflows, and detailed metrics. So over-communication of information shouldn’t be easy to understand, it should be impossible to misunderstand. That’s a very small switch in your mindset. But an email is not just an introduction to an asynchronous meeting, an email is where the conversation should hopefully start and end. And the less of those forms of communication that you end up having, the clearer that you can be, the extra three minutes that you spend on an email or communicating in a project management tool, as an example, the more effective you’re going to be, organizationally.
The second one is democratized workflows. So process documentation is at the core of every single asynchronous organization. There is a really great quote from a company called GitLab, which is a $14 billion company. They spend less than 1% of the time communicating synchronously, but they have a $14 billion valuation and are growing incredibly quickly. And they have this saying, which is, We always respond with a link. So whenever someone asks a question inside of the organization, they respond with a link to a process document that answers their question. So they’re removing the manager from being the way that people get answers. And they’re training them to basically figure out that the platform is really their manager. Again, reinforcing autonomy, allowing individuals to say, “Well, here’s where I go to get my information. It’s actually in this documentation and I want to actively use it as much as humanly possible.”
And then the third one, that we had touched on before, is detailed metrics. Every single person inside of an asynchronous organization has a third party, longitudinal quantifiable metric that they do not self-populate, that is populated by the platform itself. And then that information is available to everyone. So everyone knows what everyone else is doing inside of the organization. And counterintuitively, you may think that this impacts autonomy, but in reality, actually, if it were me, I would much rather be managed and measured by a platform that’s at its core egalitarian, as opposed to John that says, “Hey, you know what, I don’t really like the way that Liam talks to me sometimes so therefore, I’m going to give him a low rating on my three sheets to review,” that type of stuff.
So between those three core tenants, you can actually build any level of asynchronous organization. And it’s really exciting once you get there because then you can do things like, have your employees work wherever they want. So they don’t necessarily need to be in a particular location, because you’re not dependent upon synchronous communication. They don’t have to be located in the same city. We have employees in 44 different countries across the planet. You can have employees that are from any location and are bringing in very different perspectives.
We’ve had one funny week where I had a meeting with someone that was talking about debating their transition from male to female. And then the very next week, I had a discussion with someone who was thinking about having a second wife in their family because in the Middle East, this person was from the Middle East, and that was legal and encouraged in their particular country. And then this other person was transitioning. Where in any organization could you have those two same people interact? Well, you can have an organization in which you don’t necessarily have to have that kind of cultural homogenization that you end up having in the vast majority of synchronous organizations.
So it’s a really exciting time. And I see this going back to another friend of mine, Darren Murph, who was head of remote at WordPress. He said, “This is really a Model T moment where we’re really seeing a new way of operating a business.” And that’s why I want to kind of get this out to as many people as possible.
Andi Simon: How about decision making? As I’m listening to you, you’re empowering your folks to make decisions? Or do you have a different asynchronous way of evaluating options or how do you manage expenditures, empowerment, risk taking, things like that. You know, some of my clients are always concerned about, “How much risk shall I take? How do I go up for approval? Where do I manage the dollars?” But as I’m listening to you, it sounds like we’re going to empower our people to make those decisions, or how do they work?
Liam Martin: Yeah, so I can give you one clear example, which can kind of allude to many more. We have this concept called Silent Meetings inside of our organizations, inside of all asynchronous organizations. And to get very tactical, we use a platform called Asana, which is a task and project management system. And every single week, we have a meeting where we post issues. So the issue might be, we would like to hire 10 more engineers to work on this particular issue. Here’s the pros and cons. Here’s what we think. Here’s why we think we’ll succeed. Here’s the risks if we fail. And then we debate that issue asynchronously.
So we start writing comments inside of that particular issue ticket. And sometimes these issues can go 40, 50, 100 comments long. They are incredibly intense, very rich pieces of information. And if we come to a conclusion, we take that conclusion, and we put it to the top of the ticket, and we clear the ticket. And if we have less than three issues in our agenda, the platform automatically cancels the synchronous meeting. So we do this meeting every week. And we have on average one meeting a month because we don’t necessarily need to address all of those issues, all the issues that you think are going to make or break the business and completely change the trajectory of what you’re doing as an organization. They don’t need to be discussed synchronously the vast majority of the time, they can be discussed asynchronously, and can be just as successful.
And the advantage is that, #1: there’s documentation. So I can go back two years and I can figure out why did I make this decision in the business. I can look at the 78 comments and the debate. So there’s no undocumented conversations inside of asynchronous organizations. The second big advantage, and I don’t know if you’ve had this situation happen to you, but it happens to me all the time. It’s very difficult for me to be able to communicate in the moment. I’m much better sitting down and thinking about things, getting the information and processing it in my own time. And when I look at a boardroom, I don’t even need to hear what people are saying to figure out whose ideas are going to get adopted.
First, it’s usually the six foot tall white guy that looks like Captain America because, generally, that person has a charismatic advantage, what I like to call a charisma bias. So we have that person pitch those ideas. Is that person’s idea better than anyone else’s? Probably not. But can the packaging of that person sell everyone on that idea? Absolutely. So inside of asynchronous organizations, the wallflower like me that doesn’t actually want to debate those issues in the moment, because I know I will lose, I don’t have that type of skill set. I can communicate in asynchronous meetings and better ideas get adopted more often inside of asynchronous organizations. And over time, that is a killer formula for much higher levels of success inside of your organization.
Andi Simon: It sounds like, in your organization, this is how you run the business. So the question is, how do you then develop, attract, retain, and develop your talent? Do they just love this way of working and learn it immediately? Because it’s a different way from mine. I’m guessing they’ve acquired skills in high school and college, about how you get things done. And, you know, a feeder system needs to be created and may actually be you that creates it, but what would you do with employees to make them happy doing it this way?
Liam Martin: So the first thing that I think you need to take a look at is, there’s a core assumption in there that I think the majority of synchronous organizations take into consideration which we do not, which is the concept of culture. I mean, you’re really just boiling it down to, How do we build culture inside of organizations. Asynchronous organizations are more focused on the work than the people. So inside of asynchronous organizations, we do not say that we own a position, we say that we currently operate a position. So I am not the CMO of the company. I currently operate the position of CMO of the company. And at any point I have the documentation in place to be able to completely delegate that responsibility if I want to.
So I want to take the year off and write a book about remote work, which I did. I can, within days, delegate all that responsibility to my direct reports, and the organization continues on. But going back to the work concept, it entirely is focused on, Are people really passionate about the problem that you’re trying to solve? Our mission as a company is, we’re trying to empower the world’s transition towards remote work that feeds into everything that we currently do as an organization. And our measurement for new people that are coming into the organization is, “Are you as passionate about that as us? Do you have a cult-like commitment to that particular mission? If you don’t, don’t work here. We’ll find you a job somewhere else that’s way better. And will probably pay you more, but we can’t pay you as much. It’s going to be more difficult. But at the end of the day, we’re going to try to put a dent in the universe that I think you will be fundamentally proud of because you’re so incredibly passionate about this particular subject.”
And that’s what almost the majority of people miss is, it doesn’t matter how qualified someone is, are they actually excited about what they’re doing? Because if they’re not excited about what they’re doing, then you might as well not even start. So that’s where we start. And as an example, we have an ENPS rating, which is an Employee Net Promoter Score, basically, how engaged employees are in the organization. The industry average is 36. And when I studied these asynchronous organizations, I found on average, they had a score of 72. So they’re much more engaged.
And the two major reasons that they give for why they like working there is autonomy and access to information. So having an open organization like that allows for people to be more autonomous, enjoy what they’re doing. They’re not necessarily interacting with coworkers as much because asynchronous organizations just by default don’t do that. But there are different ways that we interact. Like one of the companies that I studied in the book is a company called Todoist, which is a task management app that has millions of users all over the world. And they play a kind of version of Dungeons and Dragons on their instant messaging platform. And as a group, they all have a little community and they say, Well, do we go left or we do we go right? And some of them are wizards and rogues and warriors, and they fight a fight. And they have this actually through text. So it’s a really fun kind of experience. And they’ll say, Hey, within the next 24 hours, everyone’s got to log in. And you’ve got to make your decision as to what you do because we’re going to be moving our party forward. And that’s a very nerdy example. But that’s just some of the ways that we interact asynchronously.
Andi Simon: Liam, I’m enjoying our conversation and I’m also watching our time. And when is your book coming out?
Liam Martin: The book is going to be out August 16. So dependent upon when this session comes out, it may be available. And if people want to go check it out, go to runningremotebook.com. And then you can obviously pick it up at Barnes and Noble. Amazon is probably the easiest place to be able to get it.
Andi Simon: But we all do want to keep Barnes and Noble happy. But to your point, this is really cool if you do consulting? And do you help people create asynchronous organizations? Is that part of your toolkit as well?
Liam Martin: No, because I don’t have time to be able to do that. I have to stay an operator inside of the inside of remote work. But if you go to runningremotebook.com, I actually do have a network of consultants that I can refer you to if you’re really interested in deploying asynchronous itself.
Andi Simon: Because the last thing I like to do is raise expectations. This is really cool. And why would I like to do this with all of my remote workers? Can I take the opportunity and turn it into something better? And then they say, But how do you do this? And you know, you can’t learn to play golf without a coach and some idea of how you hit the ball. And you gotta hit it 700 times before you hit it well, so there’s lots to do between the lip and the top here. But this has been so fascinating. As you are wrapping up: two or three things you might like to leave the listeners with? They often remember the end even better than your beginning. And your beginning was wonderful.
Liam Martin: Well, so I think first off, to your point: I’m not trying to build a million asynchronous organizations, I’m trying to get a million organizations to be 1% more asynchronous. So if you pick up this book and you’re able to pick up two or three strategies to be able to remove one or two meetings from every single individual, that is going to be a net gain to the universe, in my opinion. So it’s really important to be able to check out the book see what you think.
The second point that I’ll leave you with is: If you think that this is not going to be the norm moving forward, you are unfortunately not understanding how history works. We’re at 30% of the US workforce working remotely. I believe that within the next five years, we’re going to be back up to 50% of the US workforce working remotely in part. And this is a permanent civilizational shift. So you can either stick your head in the sand, and think that the old way is the way to be able to do it, going back to the horse and buggy concept, or you can jump onto those Model Ts and right into the future. So it’s up to you. But I would highly suggest that if you think that this is a trend, or just kind of a speed bump in history, definitely pick up the book, because you need to be able to adapt for those changes.
Andi Simon: Well, you know, the comment that this is the Model T for work is a very interesting metaphor. I’m sure you’ve read that Henry Ford invented the modern age. And now we have electronic vehicles, electric vehicles coming out, transforming the car from a combustible engine to basically a computer with a battery. And so there are lots of great transformations happening at this moment. And I think that work, and I love catalytic moments, which the pandemic did create a crisis and I preach, Don’t waste a crisis, because you learned a lot.
And I do a tremendous amount of virtual workshops and speaking engagements. And people say, “We want you to come.” And I’m trying really hard to tell them that that’s a waste of my time, and not probably more valuable for them. Because I’m not there to entertain you with my charismatic life. I mean, I’m there to inform you and educate you, perhaps with a little edutainment. But if we can do it remotely, it’s really cool for me and for you. And it’s cheaper for you too, and so I did 49 of them this year with great reviews. I have them starting to book up for next year.
And I’m saying to myself, I don’t really need to do it in person. It’s a little asynchronous in a sense, but it’s not too far for what you’re talking about. That’s a great transformation, we learned a lot. And boy, you can listen in and find yourself coming away transformed, like our listeners are going to be after listening to you. This has been such fun. Thank you for joining me today. I know you’re doing a lot of podcasts. I hope this has been a fun one for you. Because part of it is really fun taking your ideas and sharing it. So you don’t have to tell me if it was fun or not. You can just smile for our viewers.
Liam Martin: It was actually very enjoyable. And thank you so much for having me.
Andi Simon: Well, and thank you, both viewers and listeners for coming today. Now remember, my job is to help you see, feel and think in new ways so that you can do things better. My job is to get you off the brink so you can soar. And the times, they’re changing, you often become stuck in the mud. You’re the deer in the headlight, you stand still, you’re attached to your shiny object. And until you see something new, you don’t know how to change. And that’s because your body protects you from the unfamiliar or the unknown.
And so today, we’ve been hearing a lot about the changing nature of work. It’s happened. And now you can sustain it, but also turn it into a better way to do business, because quite frankly, your customers are looking to do it as well. And it’s not just inside, but it’s outside, which is what we love to do.
My books are available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Rethink: Smashing The Myths of Women in Business has been doing really well and won an award for the 2022 best business book for women in business. And my On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights has been hustling along. They’re showing you how a little anthropology can help your business grow.
And remember my job is to help you change. You hate change but the times are changing. So come along and let’s have some fun. You can reach me of course at info@Andisimon.com or info@Simonassociates.net and our new Simon Associates website is out, which is www.simonassociates.net. Come take a look and see what you can learn about how to change. Bye for now. And thank you again for coming. Bye-bye.