I’m writing this during the Coronavirus outbreak. It’s already been a few weeks since Europe and many other countries have implemented strict confinement rules. This crisis has forced lots of companies to adapt to remote working in just a few days. Both businesses and their employees have had no other choice — staying safe and helping to flatten the curve has been a priority.

For us, at KISSPatent, when it comes to how we work and our operations, everything has stayed practically the same. Confinement has been difficult, but for other reasons, like not being able to go out for different activities as we otherwise would.

Remote work has always been our way of working. We work better this way and every one of us thrives in this environment.

I remember when I joined KISSPatent back in 2016. It was just a few of us, and the legal in-office team was transitioning to go and work entirely remotely. We didn’t know how we would do it or how we would solve the classic remote work issues. What we did know was that we had to do it. The benefits of having a fully distributed business were unparalleled compared to a traditional model.

We figured out how to work remotely along the way — and we’re still learning. The anticipated benefits of building a 100% remote team have only strengthened with time. Now, we confidently believe that a distributed business model is one of the best setup, if not the best, for businesses like ours.

Here’s why.

We all work in different time zones… but we still collaborate, have meetings, and work together

When it comes to hiring, we hire the best people, regardless of where they are based. This also helps broaden our vision since we all come from different backgrounds.

As an employer, you might think that people will work less if they work from home or if they’re not working under the same roof. But the opposite is true. Without clear boundaries, people will put in more effort to adapt to new challenges.

When you work online, almost everything works the same as in a “normal” office, including meetings. You can also track what everybody in the team is doing, you can collaborate (sometimes it’s even better to collaborate online), you can manage projects, and you can do some culture-related activities.

The only difference is you’re doing everything online.

Back in the old days, only the big companies had access to the markets, resources, talents, and opportunities. That’s why we called them multinational businesses. To think that a privately owned SME could step up to the big guys and do business across the globe was unprecedented — it was a luxury. Now, it’s a commodity.

As KISSPatent, we have full access to almost all markets in North America and the European Union. With our partners and affiliates, we can pretty much cover the entire globe. We built our know-how around this setup, our experts are active in multiple jurisdictions. We have no problem signing up clients regardless of where they are or which market they are going to publish their idea in. This practice creates an ocean of new opportunities for us as a business.

Not being tied down to a “typical” office allows us to tap into global growth resources, consultants, partners, affiliates, events, workshops, you name it. This is one of the greatest benefits of having a 100% remote company.

A location-less business model puts us in the right where we want to be in the global market, but it does have its challenges.

Onboarding clients online is challenging. Not having a “local voice” or “local roots” in a specific location is challenging. Being active in a market where everyone else is also active is challenging. Following the latest trends in legal-tech and getting ahead of the game with our practice is challenging.

We love our challenges — they force us to continuously innovate. Not many (if any) legal companies like ours are active everywhere like we are. This leads us to uncharted territories. We need to implement new technologies into our practice so that we can stay on top of the game. We are not being challenged locally, but globally.

That’s why we implement blockchain and artificial intelligence technology into our innovation process. That is why we keep building our partnerships, not just with other legal companies, but with innovation-focused businesses as well.

That’s why we are always changing, evolving, and restructuring.

Remote working makes us collaborate better and adapt faster. It’s in our DNA

All of these challenges are happening because we operate 100% remotely. All businesses should do the same in order to survive. Companies should continuously seek to innovate to better serve their customers.

It doesn’t matter where you are. Your innovation will be judged by the world, the same world that you are trying to change.

CEO of KISSPatent, providing strategic patent protection for tech startups www.kisspatent.com