I love distributed companies. It hasn’t been a tough challenge for me running one thus far since I’ve never had more than 10 employees at any point in the lifetime of my business. Although we’ve worked with over 200 collaborators and partners concurrently but we were able to manage that just fine.
One of the companies that has proven how far a distributed company can go is Automattic. They are the team behind WordPress, WooCommerce, Jetpack, Simplenote, Longreads, VaultPress, Akismet, Gravatar, Crowdsignal, Cloudup, Tumblr, and more. They have more than a thousand employees. It’s a remarkable company to say the least.
I’d list below the top 3 reasons why I love and believe in distributed companies.
Better Talent Pool
You are not restricted by country while trying to find talent for your company. Most companies are restricted by cities. You’re often missing out on better talent pool, sometimes even paying a higher wage to lesser talented workforce since a better alternate lives in Vietnam or Ukraine. Not only would they cost less, the quality of work will be way superior.
On top of money saved in wages, there are much bigger costs that you can avoid. You wouldn’t need to rent office space, spend on furnishing, security and many other associated costs of maintaining a workspace. Although, setting up a workplace can be cheaper in Pakistan compared to many other parts of the world, it can still cause a significant damage to the company’s finances. For example, we have saved over $120,000 USD ($1000 x 12 x 10) over the period of 10 years only in rentals by running a distributed company.
Both the founders and the employees have the freedom to move around, be anywhere in the world at any point in time with no ties to any geolocation. This has a huge impact on a work-life balance as well as happiness index of the team.
Please let me know in the comments if you think traditional companies are still a better choice than distributed companies.