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Amy Foley On Remote Work, Hiring Remote Workers, And More — The ROI Online Podcast Ep. 1

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The ROI Online Podcast
Duration: 53:49
In this episode of the ROI Online Podcast, host Steve Brown interviews entrepreneur Amy Foley, co-founder of Inbound Back Office. Amy wears many hats as a wife and mother, business woman, and host of a marketing podcast. One of the most unique things about Amy’s work is that her company
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In this episode of the ROI Online Podcast, host Steve Brown interviews entrepreneur Amy Foley, co-founder of Inbound Back Office. Amy wears many hats as a wife and mother, business woman, and host of a marketing podcast. One of the most unique things about Amy’s work is that her company is entirely remote; she believes strongly in the value of remote work, having seen its positive impact in her own life after being forced to work from home for a month to care for her child after an injury. Amy slowly worked her way into fully remote positions, saw a need in the marketing field for trained freelance workers, built a team to help her meet this need, and eventually partnered with Michal Reynolds to create a fully remote company to come alongside other organizations. This company, Inbound Back Office, has been growing and expanding its influence since its founding. This growth has forced Amy to adopt careful hiring practices, as she has had to balance the need for more employees with the need for workers who can navigate remote positions well and who possess requisite specialized skills for their positions. Amy tells Steve about the team structures, avenues of work, and specific positions that now mark Inbound Back Office, and about what would characterize an ideal client for her. Steve and Amy discuss Inbound Back Office’s hourly rate model, the unexpected value of direct relationships between Amy’s employees and the companies they assist, and the heavy demand for content services, among other topics. Amy is excited to share the goal she and Michael share to double their business in 2020; this equates to more companies helped and more people hired into remote positions that will prove beneficial in their own lives! Finally, she is excited to share with the podcast audience the lesson she learned through her own family and business life: you can do hard things. Amy is the co-founder of Inbound Back Office:https://www.inboundbackoffice.com/https://www.inboundbackoffice.com/podcasthttps://www.linkedin.com/company/inbound-back-office/https://www.facebook.com/inboundbackoffice/ Link to Steve's episode on their podcast:https://www.inboundbackoffice.com/ep114-golden-toilet-money-roi-onlineThinking of starting your own podcast? Buzzsprout has the platform and the resources to start your podcast right. Following this link, https://www.buzzsprout.com/?referrer_id=867559 lets Buzzsprout know we sent you, gets you a $20 Amazon gift card if you sign up for a paid plan, and helps support our show. Support the show (https://cash.app/$stevemfbrown)
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Yeah, you're talking about some of the fears that people have when they maybe start to consider hiring, you know, remote help or a remote contractors. And so it seems like there's maybe you could write a book on what to consider when hiring folks and how to manage them, what's the secret to finding and discerning if someone is a great remote employee. Well I think that people who have at least a little bit of experience working remotely before is a pretty good indicator of whether they can or can't because we had people who, you know, they were coming from the corporate environment and this was the first time they were going to be working remote and then they find out that they're really not cut out for it because it definitely is not for everybody or they just are not good time managers. So we've learned to like ask specific questions. I mean obviously we can see if they've worked remote from their resume and you know, from asking about their previous jobs but then also kind of asking questions about like you know we have like a pre screening document before we even will get on a call with anybody and a lot of times that will just roll people out right away and you know some of it is how do you manage your time and you know you can kind of tell based on how they word it and how they answer it if they're just bs in you or if they really know what they're talking about and they really know how to manage time or like how do you keep multiple clients organized and make sure that you're staying on top of everything. Like we ask like really specific questions because these are the things that we've had trouble with before with other employees.
for sure. So you come to this realization that hey, this could be a growing concern that's a dispersed team that your can remotely so talk to me about the thought process that went into creating inbound back office. So I have been working with Michael and he had suggested that we kind of worked out this deal where I was doing some direct work for his agency. And also then in the meantime he and I were going to start evolving this into a company because he has like experience running a team and doing payroll and things like that. And I was not very good at that. So I mean I was going to doing the work but getting the clients but the other stuff, I was like, I mean I was paying everybody through paypal and I just kept track of everything on the spreadsheet very kick. And so he was like, this is a really great idea. Like, and he knows from the agency side, he's like, I know this is a pain point, He said because I have a lot of agency context and I know this is a need, so that's kind of why we decided to kind of go together and try to evolve this thing into a company. And then by 2018 we were ready to pull it out from, you know, the kind of little incubator that we created and it was on its own. And that's when I left the agency completely and I stopped doing any of the actual work of the business and was just, you know, then one of the leaders of the business and working on sales and that sort of thing. It was quite an evolution. So Michael brought this stack of talents that maybe you weren't so confident that I mean you could handle those responsibilities if you wanted, but you had some synergy, you've had this history together. And so when you started off, you probably had in your mind a certain way that you thought this was going to go and you you thought there would be these particular clients that would really value this. And now at this stage where you are now, what did you learn that maybe you didn't know and talk to me about the kind of clients that you have now as opposed to the ones you thought you would have. I didn't realize how hard it would be to grow fast because we have grown at such an alarming speed. That to me like I was just like oh you know if we get so many clients that we can handle, we just we just add more people just add more people. And it just seems so simple to me. But I mean hiring is the worst and uh which is why a lot of agencies love our company because they know how hard hiring can be. I was very quick to hire in the beginning. I would you know anybody with you know a resume and that could talk about you know the position and what was needed. I just let them sell me on it and they were hired but especially when it's remote and I mean what I think even in the office there's just other things that you need to look for as far as like you know being able to be professional and you know having an actual home office we hired someone wants to we were convinced was living in their car. So you know you learn different things to look for and so tightening up that hiring process was definitely a learning experience that we seem to be pretty good at it now. But it was definitely crazy in the beginning.
did you find, you know in the office, you have these distractions where your coworkers maybe interrupt you? But at home sometimes I I think about I look over at the dishwasher and I go I can turn that on and then then I walked by and there's some laundry it can be done. And I seem that I'm trying to get some other test and while I buy working, do you have that distraction? So I think in the beginning I did struggle with that, but I'm a pretty regimented and schedule oriented kind of person. So what I did it was an evolution. But you know, I kind of created this schedule where you know, I had certain times where I'm going to take a break, that's when I'm going to throw a load of laundry in because I mean it takes like a minute throw a little laundry in and then I'll you know, turn on the dishwasher depending on how long of a break I'm going to take. But it's all very intentional and scheduled so that all of my household duties get done and all of my work duties to get done in a given day now it's not always perfect. Sometimes things happen that throw off the whole schedule but you just adapt and you know I have now I have a very supportive husband who helps with anything I need. He also works from home. So. Yeah. Yeah so and my kids are older now and can help out a little more so it's gotten much easier over the years.
Exactly, it seems so simple and logical, but it's very much lost on these traditional types of companies is that I really don't know, I think a lot of it is because you know they're in this mindset of this is how it's always been done and they're not really willing to change. Which is interesting because I mean for example when I worked from home for that month, like I got so much more done and I proved that I could do it and prove that I was still working and I also think that a lot of times companies get tied to this hour thing like you must be working for this many hours or else you didn't put in the work. Well time doesn't necessarily equate to hard work, I could maybe work in three hours what somebody else can do in eight hours, but I might be delivering a whole lot more more work quantity wise, but also more valuable work. Exactly, so, but I think that's just hard for some people to kind of wrap their heads around who have been ingrained in this thinking of, you know, they you have to be in the office for eight hours a day or you I don't know what you're doing and I don't know that you're getting your work done.
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