Don’t Ask For Flexibility, Be Flexible Yourself

On this episode of the Virtual Frontier, we have Natalija Banic. Natalia leads HR here at FlashHub.

Natalija and Manuel had an awesome conversation about flexiblity and what kind of flexibility freelancers can provide your business.

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Manuel Pistner

Hey, Natalia, I’m happy to have you on the show of the podcast Virtual Frontier. It was a very spontaneous session that we have right now because we had our weekly meeting and we were talking about difference between freelancers and full time employees and a mindset of flexibility. And you stated that if you want to have flexibility, you need to become flexible. And this brought me to the point that I said, Okay, we have to be flexible now and record the podcast because this is so exciting. I want to share it with our audience. just introduce yourself.

Natalija Banic

Yeah. Hi. So yeah, I’m Natalija. I work as a lead HR bright solutions and Flash Hub and I work as a full time freelancer. So yeah, I’ve been working as a full time Freelancer for the past five years, almost five years and yeah, before that, I had a chance to also experience out in a full time traditional type of employment for, I don’t know, more than 10 years. So yeah, all of the time I was in HR spent, you know my time through different roles in HR. So try it out almost everything there. And yeah, so here we are now speaking of flexibility, and yeah, I think that make differences. So differences between traditional employment full time employment. And on the other hand, what you get with freelancers and what what are the differences what you need to change your mindset in order to become able to work with with freelancers? Yeah.

Manuel Pistner

I mean, you helped me to transform my whole organization from a local team of 40 people to a virtual team of more than 150, freelancers. You know, all the ups and downs that we went through. And, you know, you experience the difference of our local team, versus, the freelancer team and it’s getting more and more one team but in the very beginning it was always we and they What do you think is the main difference between full time employees and freelancers?

Natalija Banic

Yeah, exactly. So we mentioned flexibility. So I think that mindset, I would say mindset that Yeah, mindset is what makes a difference because full time freelancers act as an entrepreneur. So they have full control over their lives, working lives so they choose with whom to work when to work, how much to work, what content to deal with. So they pretty much for more create their work day and when it comes to full time employees traditional type of employment so people that sit in your office, I think that, you know, that mindset goes more to okay. So, you know, this is my employer, let’s wait for him to, you know, tell me what to do. Right, to give me tasks to organize my day to supply me with tools to supply me with whatever you know processes and everything and on the other hand we take part in that. So very often when when we are hired by the client, they need us to give them suggestion about a tool to give them suggestion about improvement about the process and such kind of thing. So, yeah, differences in mindsets, I think, make make the big difference flexibility as well. So we mentioned flexibility. That’s a big one.

Manuel Pistner

Yeah. So you know why people hire or organizations hire people full time is because they want Basically to rely on one person full time, which means they have a high demand for stability they the organization’s I mean, they have a high demand for whenever I need somebody, a person must be there. For my experience, they have the feeling that there is a person, but it might also happen that this person has no time because she’s involved in other projects. What do you think when a freelancer is that flexible, he or she might quit the job the next day, even. Then, if I am, if I’ve grown up as an entrepreneur as a manager, in such a conventional traditional organization where I only have full time, freelancers or full time employees, I might be very disappointed. Because this person leaves on the other side, this person agreed to do my job. I put all my expectations on this person and then finally he just leaves. How can this happen? And how can I overcome these negative emotions? And how to overcome the situation if this person this Freelancer leaves?

Natalija Banic

Yeah. So I think that we need to work on at the beginning with with with people that work with organizations that want to work with full time with freelancers, basically. We need to work with them on their mindset change, because their expectations, they have the same expectations when they hire traditional way. So full time people that sit on site, so they try to just transfer the same expectations to freelancers. So with the same, you know, fixed terms, rigidity and everything they approach, freelancers. So, you know, they, they want to overcome bottlenecks and issues they’re having with you know, by working with traditional type of, Kind of, you know, employees.

But then they approach freelancers that are more flexible with the same rigidity. So it doesn’t go that way. So how it should be is that they need to become more flexible, in order to ask for more flexibility. If they wants to stay rigid, then they stay working with their full time employees that are, you know, sitting next to them. And then that’s it. So, as I said previously, so in full time employment, so do you have an employee that comes to the office at a certain point in the day, right, so 9am 8am, they go at 6am at 6pm, they have a lunch break that is defined to everything is defined. You know, you know, everything. So that’s, that’s fine. There are limitations. And that’s pretty much rigid. They approach freelancers with the same thing. But you have to know that when you work a freelancer. You asked for flexibility you, actually you need to use it because many of them don’t use that flexibility, but they act the same way. So they spend a lot of time with freelancers that they see are not really good at the beginning, maybe. But the thing is, there has to make the switch in their mindset. So they just have to become more flexible, in order to kind of play with that new flexibility they’re getting with freelancers, so that that’s the core I think. Because skill set, you have it. So you have that freelancer, if the freelancer decides to become full time employee one day, you can bring them to their office, right.

So it’s the same skill set, but we talk about the type of work organization or a type of mindset. So you have rigidity, and fixed terms fix kind of mindset and on the other side, you have huge flexibility. And the thing is, you know, freelancers won’t feel bad if you say, Hey, you know, we spent a week together, but I don’t think we are good fit for each other, they will say, Okay, thank you for a good opportunity, you know, hopefully will work in the future again. And that’s it. So no hard feelings. But I think how they approach it. Oh, you know, okay, I had to give them tons of feedback and tons of new opportunities and chances and then to spend months and months with them. Until I say, Okay, this was exhausting, you know, I had to replace them. So that’s the thing. You don’t have to wait four months because, yeah. I don’t know full time employees that sit in your office, by freelancers that have probably more clients than you..

Manuel Pistner

So the thing is more about transparency, openness, and this at a much higher speed than in the local office, you know. The mechanisms are pretty much the same even if you have a full time employee and you are not happy with this person or this person is not happy with a working environment, they will leave. But most likely they will only leave after six months or a year or even later. But during that period, very often you lose a lot of money and you lose lots of time. Because you just don’t make the decision. You put the decision till in the future like in a year or so or after the trial period of six months and then you decide okay, this won’t work your last six months. And with a freelancer you work with this person two weeks, or even a week and you see if it is a good fit or not. If you just cancel the contract or this person the freelancer cancels the contract and then you are highly disappointed because of your personal emotions. You might be in a shock and say okay, freelancers, this does not work. Those people are not reliable. And we were talking in the beginning about if you if you want to have flexibility, you have to become flexible. yourself. And when we compare traditional organizations that rely on stability on fixed rules or full time employees, where they can have access to whenever they feel they need to access them to a virtual organization of freelancers, which is basically a highly flexible, very dynamic. How does a virtual team working with freelancers give you the security that you can achieve your goals, even if every Freelancer can cancel every day?

Natalija Banic

Yeah. So I think so. If you if the organization develops, you know, systems, and then brings freelancers into those systems, then you have your systems, right. So you have your processes, tools, documentation, so everything is there. So you just need…. What is a freelancer, Freelancer is a skill set. Right. So it’s a skill set that you use in order to do something. So create PowerPoint presentation, do some consultancy, work, creative, whatever.

So it’s a skill set. If you have good systems in place tools in place documentation in place, then you can just, you know, bring another toolbox into your system, the system is there. And it works if you need to replace, you know, the toolbox, the skill set, you just do it. So, I think that makes you kind of successful and maybe not risk free of you know, having freelancers leave, but let’s say you have stability, and then you can easily bring another skill set to your organization to your system. That’s I think, you know, very important. I just want to add one thing. So, with with traditional type of employment and full time and part some employees that are on traditional contract, let’s say. So you have one skill set you you employ someone and like that said you don’t have endless budget. So you and you, you might have, you know, endless needs, you might have different needs, right? With freelancers, you can also have more focused needs fulfillment, because you can hire an expert for one particular skill, and that is a top expert. And then for another skill, you hire another one that is top experts for that one skill. So you can actually have better also better quality of work done in a short period of time that wouldn’t be able with your full time employees. Because, yeah, they have this kind of rigid skill set and they can’t become top experts in all those things, but you hired them because there was kind of you know, yeah, good solution at that time.

Manuel Pistner

So what you say is that when you have when you work with freelancers and you see them as skills or tools or whatever, you have access to a large toolbox for specialized tools or skills that you can use to tackle any kind of challenges that you might face today or tomorrow. So it, it is not the security safety that you have those people in the office that you employed and they are with you, most likely from a social perspective, most likely, it’s a feeling that you have people here and this is social and it feels you can rely on everything. But instead working with freelancers, you put full responsibility and ownership to yourself. And then you have a large toolset that gives you safety and security, to always have the right skills at your hands within like a day or Week, not six month until you find a new full time employee. And with with this flexible toolset, you can solve any kind of problems. So this is basically how we compare our local static organizations to flexible organizations. How would you say, or let me phrase one thing back. If you want to use tools or skills you need to know what you want to achieve. And what I experienced when I was working with a local team, we had endless meetings, and I realized that we only had these meetings because nobody knew what to do. We didn’t have clarity about what exactly do we want to do? What exactly do we want to accomplish? If you don’t know that, then you need lots of communication, meetings after meetings. And that’s why so many organizations think that without this continuous communication and so many meetings, things simply don’t work. That is true, if you don’t know what you want to do exactly. How would you say that agile organizations, you know, many organizations, they want to become more flexible. They put it in the terms of becoming agile, becoming agile means you can catch opportunities whenever they are there. And the organization should be able to adapt to change. To change in the market to change everywhere that is happening at an ever increasing speed. How would you say that freelancers can help organizations to become more flexible and become agile and tackle all these challenges that we are facing in the future and even today?

Natalija Banic

Yeah, well, we all we mentioned previously. So I think that the first step so kind of a precondition to work with freelancers successfully is that organizations or organization leaders change their mindsets. So they have to become more flexible. So their minds have to become more agile. Because working with a freelancer is an opportunity, right that you should catch because it’s there. So, yeah, exactly. If so, if their minds become agile, then you know, they will see that this is a good opportunity. Because if we talk about and that’s the precondition, so that that’s a precondition, if that’s there, then they will, you know, reach out for a freelancer and then you know, most probably what happens is. So, you know, what we do when we as we are assessing candidates, right? So, the first thing or some one thing among first thing that we ask is, okay, you know. How you how you make sure that you understand the requirements, right? So what you do and what The most often answer is. Ok, you know, I have my own whatever a questionnaire or template or so they know because they charge you per hour, right? And they want to deliver and move on. So they’re very organized. They have their own tools. And you’re there no endless, meetings. Because you don’t want to, you don’t want to pay for that. And they don’t want to spend time on that. Right. So they want to spend time on doing the work. And so that’s it. But I think the precondition is that organization leaders understand two things. One thing is my mindset has to become agile and flexible. So did I actually see the opportunity. And the opportunities I can work with freelancers, right. So that’s one thing. And another thing is reliability. So they, think and I was in that. So, you know, I live that life, right? So I spend more than 10 years in corporate type of environment. So you have people sitting there, and you have this feeling of, okay, you know, I can rely on them.

Well, what happens many times is that you have only really small percent of top performers, right? In any organization. And here with freelancers, you can have, you know, only top performers because you can switch to those that, you know, show up. They’re actually top performance in the end right. You don’t have to speak to those that are not top, like A class player. So the thing is, you have 50 people in your organization, but how many of them are top performers, only few of them and, you know, I can, you know, I can bet on that because I was there so you have maybe, I don’t know 10 5% of top performers. And you have high performers and then the rest of the crew, right? So that’s it. So who are those really reliable people? I mean, just because of, you know, having them sitting there, you can approach them and tell the task, it doesn’t mean that they will do it. Or that they will do it immediately or that it will go smoothly, the results will be there. No, it doesn’t happen that way. Right. So many often, they’re not actually reliable if you if you think about the result, and what you get in the end, they just sit there, right? Some of them are really reliable. But then you know, the same is for freelancers, right? You can work with those that are really reliable, you can switch to those fast. But you have to become flexible. So you have to build your agile mindset in order to do that

Manuel Pistner

That’s a that’s a good description of also what I experienced when an organization has a local team. So basically the security and the feeling of reliability comes from that things repeat every day, which means the same people are there every day and I can touch them, I see them. Hopefully I can’t smell them. But they are there and it feels as a manager, those are my people, I pay them I own them they are here. But what if there is a new opportunity for whatever that requires a different kind of skill set in a different technology that none of these people have. Then you either can’t catch this opportunity. Or you ask somebody who tried to catch it, even if they lack the skills but okay, they tried to do because you are the boss, you tell them the result will be poor. You did something, you may be hunted this opportunity but you were not able to catch it because you are missing the right tool set to catch any kind of opportunity. Because you have always limited skill set, which is always limited in skills and capacity. I’m talking about a local team. But anyway, it feels like you can put much responsibility on people. Yes, they are always there, but it does not mean they really do the job. Now, you said that with a virtual team, you can always work with top performers. And I agree on that, I absolutely agree on that. But I have to say that I do not only work with top performers and sometimes you have like to try five different people until you have this top performer. And if you are with your old economy mindset, and you say okay, here’s one freelancer, okay, I give it a try. And then this person does not perform. And then you say, Okay, I said this won’t work because freelancers are not reliable. They are not top performers. Whatever they are from a different culture and so on and so forth. So you try to find a way to confirm that your local organization is better. So this is one trap many people fall into. What you could do instead is, use the flexibility of the system, right. Just hire another one and try it. If this fails, hire another one. And try this is the agile approach, try to do something, measure it improve. This is the first change period, then again, try to do something change improve. And this is the same with freelancers. And maybe after trying five times, you have a real, like gold nugget, that is a real skilled freelancer, and this is top performer. And you don’t have to hire this person full time just for 10 hours a week, and both are happy with the situation. And do you have… So this is what I experienced, and this is what I really appreciate in the system. But that’s a huge gap compared to how local organizations work. How would you describe a process where an organization a local can do this virtual transformation step by step to become more flexible.

Natalija Banic

Yeah. Yeah. So I will answer to that. I just want to add one thing. So I think that organization leaders that want to try to work with freelancers, they, you know, they approach their local people differently than freelancers. So they measure success differently. So I think that with full time employees there that sit in their offices, they, you know, they start with Okay, have these people, that means that the work will be done right. But if you look at that from the perspective of the results and the outcome, then yeah, maybe it’s not equal to you know, number of employees money spent on them, time spent on you everything meetings, all the resources spent, right. So if you compare that I’m not sure that equation will be more successful than the one that you have with freelancers, right. So with freelancers how they, when they want to prove that things won’t work with freelancers, they typically approach working with freelancers from the perspective of the result, the outcome, okay? The outcome was not great. Yeah, well, you know, this doesn’t work, right? But they don’t approach the same way.

There are organizations right? If they do that, or what was the outcome, so I put this amount of money in my organization and resources, this is the outcome. Okay. So, you know, is it different, right, so it’s not definitely so that there is a different approach different measurement of success, they apply to their, you know, internal employees and organizations and then working with freelancers. A process step by step. I’d say that the first thing is, and I mean, this is this is what we introduce right? This assessment readiness is assessment, right? So are you ready to really have this agile mindset? Do you have everything in place that it will enable you to work successfully? Yes or no? Right? If If no, then let’s work on those things that are missing, right?

So let’s, I don’t know, coach you and help you to become more flexible to have more flexible mindset to, you know, scan to see what tools you’re missing. Well, you know, we do have processes and your workflows and so on. So let’s do the preparation. And then let’s set expectations, right. So okay, let’s define expectations, let’s define needs, and that’s how we typically do that. Right. So okay, let’s talk about leads, and then let’s profile those, you know, toolboxes or skill sets that you need. So who do you need, what’s the profile, what’s the skill set and then Let’s always go with some tests tasks. Because then you can really test a couple of people for, you know, fairly small amount of money and see who fits the best. And then continue with that person. But then let’s catch up, you know, frequently to see if you’re still maintaining that flexible mindset. Because what happens is they fall into the trap of, you know, going back to their kind of, you know, traditional type of thinking. They apply the same things to their traditional employees, and freelancers, and that must not happened, right. So you have to maintain that flexible mindset to maintain that awareness that, Oh, that’s a freelancer. So, you know, I don’t owe them they have more clients. So, you know, I have to respect them. They have to respect me. I have to meet their commitments and as delays as well as they have to meet, you know, what we agreed on and so on. So there is a kind of a partnership that lives in a different way than it does in your traditional organization. So that that’s the core and then Okay, so we’re doing this trust project, someone was the best one. You hire them, and then you gave them the first project, but it happens that it didn’t work out. Well. Okay, you know, let’s, let’s find another batch of you know, people because maybe you call it Golden Nugget, right. So maybe that golden nugget is another podcast. It was not available, available at a time where we source the first time, right. But that again, requires your flexibility, right. So yeah, what I mentioned before, like this NLP premise, right? So if you’re the most flexible part in your organization, then you will have the most control over it. And this is the thing. So you have to maintain this flexibility inside yourself in order to work successfully with these, let’s say virtual teams, right? Because golden nuggets that are out there. But, you know, it just you have to be agile and flexible in order to reach them. And then when you find them, you keep them. And also you keep them differently than you keep your traditional employees. Right. So that’s also really important. Yeah, so yeah, that would be

Manuel Pistner

Yeah, what you said is very important that when working with a freelancer, as both are free and independent and self determined, it’s more like working in a partnership. It’s more like we both have to see a benefit in our cooperation. And, of course, this applies also to a local organization more and more, but how local organizations still work today is how they worked 100 years ago. Like there is one manager that has a team and this team needs employees, and the manager decides what these people will do in the team, which salary they earn, etc.. And as we have this, rigid environments and these strict rules and the static, setup of an organization, it’s simply not possible to adopt. I mean, organizations, they tried to be agile, but they always try to be agile in their specific niche in their specific domain. But what if there is an opportunity in a completely in a different market, but that it’s a large opportunity and your current business maybe goes down the market decreases whatever, you could catch this opportunity. If you have the tools and the workflows and the right skills that helps you to catch this opportunity, why should you not do this? And this is where organizations are looking more and more for opportunities, how they can become more flexible and agile to catch these opportunities. But I realized with my own local team that you are always just too limited. When it comes to expectation setting, in the very beginning, I also had the expectation because I just knew it from my local team that when I hire a person, I get their 100% commitment, they will do the work. But if somebody asked me and you challenged me in the beginning, I remember this. So what do you exactly want this person either to do or to accomplish? What is the exact goal? And once you are really conscious about what you want to achieve, then you can you can control and you can measure you can you can check from the very beginning from the first weekly meeting, Okay, are we closer to this goal, but you can only do this if you know the goal. And many, things in organizations work on expectations that are personal expectations without clarifying them and getting commitment from both sides. You know the scenario somebody did something and then you go to this person and you blame. Sorry, but I expected that you do this in this in this in that way because and then there’s a reason you are an expert in this and that. So I have expected that you do this and that. Instead of seeing this as a learning, a learning from Okay, what do I need to communicate more clearly in the beginning so that my initial expectations are really delivered? They try to blame somebody and ask okay and say, Okay, I would have expected this and this and that. Next time please do this. Okay, the next time This person does it, but again, you have some expectations and they might not be catched. So what I want to say is that clarity is absolutely important to be able to use virtual teams for more flexibility. Would you agree on that, or how do you see the basis for being successful with virtual teams?

Natalija Banic

Yeah. So, I agree with that. And we are talking about OKRs these days, right? So, with freelancers so OKRs. Okay, so results, which is basically an outcome, right outcome, what you end up with, right? So this is what I’ve made, and objective, right? So what you want to achieve, where do you want to go? Right? So when you hire a freelancer because they don’t belong to organization, their mindsets if they’re good, of course, there are many freelancers that are low quality, right? It’s a huge pool, right? The whole world is your playground, right, basically. So the thing with Freelancer is because they don’t belong to organization, their mindset is typically Okay. What do you want to achieve, why you hired me? What do you want to achieve? And how will you know that I did a good job. What is the outcome I need to give you and that’s very specific. So this is what I want you to give me. And this is what I want to achieve with you giving me that, right. So these are objectives and key results. So I would say that good freelancers have this mindset like okay, OKR mindset because they don’t know you, they have to understand that quickly, right? Because you need them to jump in the role right away. And they have some onboarding, but you know what, when you onboard full time employees, you typically give them like six months, right?

Like, yeah, probation period of six months or something. So it’s very rarely less than that. So you get them six months to play around and to onboard to get used to the organization to adapt to everything, but with freelancers. You work with people that got used to adopting quickly to many different organizations. So their mindset is okay, what do you want to achieve with hiring me? And how will you know that I gave you what you need it? So what do you want me to give you? So these are very important things. And I think that with full time employees with traditional type of employees, what you have is an output mindset. Okay, I spend whole day working on this, right? Okay, what’s the outcome? Well, you know, I miss these and that and whatever, right? So, that’s a mindset focused on the output. Okay, so I work whole day very hard, right. But where is the outcome? Well, you know, tomorrow I will produce it because tomorrow I would come here at 9am. And, yeah, well, you know, start my day again. And, yeah, so plenty of time, right, eight hours. I’m here around so that’s fine. But we said that that’s that’s I think, you know, what’s the difference?

So, Okay, organizations are introducing OKRs, right? So they try to kind of, you know, bring this spirit or mindset to the organizations,. But then you have you have to have this learning curve, and then you have to spend time on that. And still, you don’t have top experts for every particular skill. You try to kind of squeeze people or many roles into one person. I don’t know which way which direction is correct. But yeah, you try to say, Okay, I have this needs, but you know, I didn’t have that particular skill set. So okay, you know, and his might be good for that. So let’s try her out. And then you give person something. And what happens very often is that people don’t feel good because they don’t do the things that they’re skilled for. One thing, another thing, they don’t do things that are are aligned with their natural tendencies. Right? So I hate selling but somehow I end up you know, calling people to check for something. How this happened, right? Oh, well the organization had these needs so you know, you’re the most suitable or the less not suitable. So, yeah, that happens often. And we freelancers you don’t have that because these guys they do what do you like that what they really like? So they enjoy their work their jobs? Because, Yeah, I mean, they spend some time doing something and they realize what they really enjoy doing. They know that they will produce the best results by doing what they like to do. And yeah, so they work on an hourly basis on project basis. So yeah, they have this OKR, our mindset, I would say the best ones, those good ones. Yeah,

Manuel Pistner

I have. I have exactly to what you were telling. I have one experience when I hired performance marketing expert to create a competitor analyzes for a customer. And it was really created. It by far exceeded my expectations because there was a huge excel sheet were all the facts of like social media, brand awareness, then ad spend per month, return on ad spend whatever all these things, see your traffic etc were listed there compared to 10 other competitors. And I thought, Wow, that is really great. It’s exactly what I needed. But even I was not able in the very beginning to tell exactly what I needed. I just tried to find an expert who did this in the past. Then I asked to show me some results of past jobs. I like what I see and that is person started. And what happened then is that I sent this these facts displaying facts to customer and they said okay, That’s nice, that’s valuable. But I would have expected a presentation with some charts and graphics and so. And I said, Okay, I can I can understand this. But first let’s focus on these facts and then analyze it and see which conclusions we can make based on these facts. And this is what I will put into a presentation. We did this. And then there was my fault. I went to this freelancer, which was an expert in performance marketing, search engine optimizations, and asked person to create a presentation. And you guessed it, it failed. Yeah, because that’s not the presentation creator. Okay. And then I have two choices either to realize that it was my fault because I used a screwdriver to paint a picture this won’t work. It’s the wrong tool. Or say, Okay, so this Freelancer didn’t deliver my expectation and then I closed the door for myself to ever be satisfied with a person after stopped working with them. Because if I always put additional things on top of this person, have expectations to do different things that this person simply can’t do, then I will always end up with, okay, this person is not good, it won’t work. On the other side, I also hired a presentation designer. I was not even clear about this content and his presentation designer asked me, okay, do you have a content? And I was like, What? You are the presentation designer, you have to design the presentation, why should I get the content to you? And then I realized, okay, it’s a different thing. The content is the one part I hire a content creator. And then I hire creative presentation designer that takes the content understands it, and makes a nice looking presentation that somebody can understand. And this is the way that it really works. Having the right people for the right roles and really understand clearly which kind of tools you use.

Natalija Banic

Yeah, exactly. And you can’t, you simply can’t have that in your organization, traditional type of organization because you can’t pay that many salaries, full packages, you know, to have. And you don’t need a full time that’s the case, right? So you don’t need them full time. So you you, need to choose between. Okay, so I have five full time employees, and they’re really good at something, but I need more, right? So I get crappy things for the rest of the things that they’re not fully skilled for. But I’m okay because you know, they sit there I can see them I have this good feeling about that because you know, they look nice, or you go to freelancers, and you kind of really have a sharp kind of laser focus, right? So you need a presentation designer, pick the top one, you need a content creator, pick the top one, you know, be the one that has experience in your niche and you know. Everything has to be there. And then you have this, you know, whatever performance marketing or what you mentioned. So this guy will make the analysis Input you to raw data and excel there. So you know everything so everyone has what they need in order to do their job. So content writer, has the raw data, presentation designer has the content that is shaped and polished and approved, and so on. So, yeah, it’s that’s the way how it should be done. And of course, yes, so you might spend two hours in order to test for presentation designers in order to say, Okay, this one is the best one. But then you can stick to that one, right? And this one will respond to you if you for this you have to have this flexible mindset, of course. So that you know that next time when you reach out to them, they say, Okay, I can start today but on Monday, you can start because I’m finishing something that I’m working on right now. And you have to be flexible enough to say, okay, yes, this is totally okay because, you know, this guy was flexible enough to not get in touch with me for more work because yeah, that was the deal. I gave him one project and that that’s it. So yeah, that that’s the way it should be done. Definitely.

Manuel Pistner

I mean, it’s this all what we are talking about contributes perfectly to the sharing economy right. In the next five or 10 years or even today, the amount of people increases dramatically, that won’t buy a car, but rather use an Uber or a taxi. And even with your house, people won’t buy a house, they will rent a flat for a year or even they will travel the world and spend nights in different homes like you would do this on Airbnb. So it’s more like not owning one static thing that does not provide you the flexibility that you need to do whatever you might want to do in the future. But more consume and use services. Yeah, exactly. Slightly digital. So as your thought about this comparison,

Natalija Banic

yeah, yeah, that’s a good comparison. So and it actually you know, if you just want to try to raise or yeah to to increase your flexibility, people should actually try this. So I’m using Airbnb so whenever I travel, I use Airbnb. I never, you know, sleeping hotels and so on. So I always use Airbnb. I’ve had excellent experience so far. But, you know, a couple of times I used couch surfing, I don’t know if you know, what’s that. So it’s even more radical thing, right? So I was not prepared for that. I just wanted to put myself into that uncomfortable situation. I thought he will be uncomfortable. Okay, so it was like 10-12 years ago. But it was the total opposite of my expectations. It was really excellent pleasant experience for me. So you know you sleep with a family in their home so they # welcome you and you basically pay nothing right so it’s a great thing so to meet such an open minded people was an extraordinary thing for me. So you know I was if we translate this to business right and to to business environment if you talk about traditional organizations, traditional employment If business leaders if those organization leaders want to try out or to check or tests if they’re flexible enough, they can just pick their top and high performers and tells them to work remotely.

Okay, so if they feel uncomfortable, that means that That they have to work on their flexibility in order to become ready to work with virtual teams, because that’s a good test. So they didn’t even have to reach out to freelancers in order to you know, have these terrible experience , they expect, right? But they just, they can just stay within their organizations and pick their best employees. So not the ones that they want to let go. And they, you know, don’t know how because they, you know, really cost them so much and, you know, they lost them to pay overtime or whatever. But the thing is, if they pick their best, so top and high performers, and just say okay, from today, and for the next month, you will work remotely. And whenever you want. Just bring me the outcome, and you know what the outcome is because you’re already giving it right, your top performer, high performer

And if you feel uncomfortable, if that doesn’t work, then they’re not ready. So they still stay within their playgrounds. And that’s a good test.

Manuel Pistner

That is great. I’m very excited about this. I mean, that’s so easy to start with. It does not require any change. And it puts the leader of a team or an organization in a most likely uncomfortable situation where they understand if they want to understand. Okay, this is what we need to change first to work, based on results become more flexible and leverage the power of virtual teams.

Natalija Banic

Yeah, it’s an exercise within the same organization with the same people you already work with. And more specifically with those that you really appreciate a lot, right, top ones high performers. So yeah, it might be a good test. And if death brings uncomfort and you know, bad feeling or it doesn’t work, then it means that… it starts on the top right. So he goes from a leadership so that means a leadership has to exercise their minds and make it better agile so that they can actually transform their organizations.

Manuel Pistner

Perfect. I think that’s a good conclusion at the end. It was very valuable even for me. I mean, I work with you since more than a year, even one and a half years. But it always brings me new understandings and opens my mind to different things. Thanks for being on the show. It was very great talking to you. Thank you.

Natalija Banic

Thanks, Manuel. Bye


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