Rhenium disulfide (ReS2) and diselenide (ReSe2), the group 7 transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs), are known to have a layered atomic structure showing an in-plane motif of diamond-shaped-chains (DS-chains) arranged in parallel. Using a combination of transmission electron microscopy and transport measurements, we demonstrate here the direct correlation of electron transport anisotropy in single-layered ReS2 with the atomic orientation of the DS-chains, as also supported by our density functional theory calculations. We further show that the direction of conducting channels in ReS2 and ReSe2 can be controlled by electron beam irradiation at elevated temperatures and follows the strain induced to the sample. Furthermore, high chalcogen deficiency can induce a structural transformation to a nonstoichiometric phase, which is again strongly direction-dependent. This tunable in-plane transport behavior opens up great avenues for creating nanoelectronic circuits in 2D materials.