Rodger Roeser, is the owner and president of one of Ohio’s largest and most successful marketing and public relations consultancies. He is the national chairman of the Public Relations Agency Owners Association, and proudly runs an Inc. 5000 firm.
1) How did you get started working from home?
Back in June, 2015 I decided that our physical office space was simply not keeping pace with the actual times and the realities of what our work is like at a national PR firm. Often, several folks were not there because they were with clients, at meetings, networking and events. Driving in to work day in a day out after years simply became a drag, and increasingly both myself and my staff (particularly when weather was bad – or good, hmmm) requested to work from home. You have to trust your employees so we put into motion a plan to leave the physical and enter into a virtual office. It became a full time work from home situation this January, although “working from home” for me is not exactly the phrase. I “start my day from home” like everyone, then I’m either in my home office (which looks exactly like my old work office) or off to clients, business travel, events and so forth.
2) How did you choose the work-at-home career you do?
I’ve been in this field essentially my entire career as a reporter, journalist and public relations and marketing executive. I no longer found it necessary to be confined by four walls to do what I do successfully. In fact, I started to believe a physical office was an impediment to my success, the success of the firm and of my employees.
3) How did you get started (basic initial steps)?
Again, I’ve been in this field for 25 years, so making the leap from physical office to virtual office was not scary. Staff was the same, clients were the same, protocols were the same – we just spent more time at the local coffee shop or watering hole when we needed to meet together as a team. Which is more fun and more productive than a stuff conference room. That said, we work together with clients so we’re often in the client space anyway, so we have de facto offices wherever we work.
4) How did you get your first client or customer or job?
Hard work and determination. And lots of praying.
5) How do you market your business?
As a marketing firm, we practice what we preach. We use a multi-faceted and multi-layered, consistent, ongoing and sustainably proactive marketing plan that includes an all of the above approach. We use direct mail and direct response, I am an accomplished public speaker and put on seminars/webinars, we develop content and have an aggressive public relations strategy, we use online, social media and experiential marketing to our advantage. We are also active networkers.
6) What does your usual day look like?
Almost no such thing, as with the agency, we have a designated quota of hours we need to hit each month. So, my day may involve working with staff, networking luncheons, breakfasts, after hours, client meetings, business travel and so forth. I would say, typically, it’s up early as we have clients throughout the country in different time zones, so I review email and social media to get up to speed. As “the boss” I will lay out general daily and weekly assignments and expectations, review and approve client work and set meetings and presentations.
7) What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?
Oh, that would be a very long list. Work to live, don’t live to work. Life’s too short for three things: cheap bourbon, a crappy job, or lousy coffee.
8) What advice would you give someone who wants to work from home?
Get into an established routine. Set the number of hours you want to work each week (not each day, it varies too much) and make absolutely certain you have some time and money budgeted to market yourself.
Website: The Eisen Agency