1. How did you start working remotely?
Around 5 years ago I took a one-way flight from Estonia to San Francisco while I left my master degree studies and quitting my career and job. With the savings I had that time I needed to get an online job fast. I had sleepless nights til I got hired via Upwork.
Today I’m the top-rated freelancer in marketing field in Upwork community with 100% job success score living a comfortable nomad life.
2. What do you think are the main advantages of remote work?
Flexibility, productivity, freedom.
I love the work-life balance that working remote offers. I think this lifestyle is the healthiest lifestyle possible. If I feel tired, then I can sleep more.
If I’m getting sick, then I can work from my bed or maybe even take a day off. Also, some days I may feel very inspired at night and “go crazy” until 2am, and other days I’ll be offline by 6pm. It’s a good feeling that everything can be done and planned out not because of the 9–5 work slot but by considering my current mood, inspiration, and motivation. It helps being treated like a human and not a working robot.
I think in the end, this kind of lifestyle is also more useful for the companies and clients that we work with because the work gets done more productively, and it’s done with positive feelings.
3. Do you think there are disadvantages or that you’re missing something by working remotely?
4. From which cities or countries have you worked since you have become remote?
USA, Costa Rica, Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Indonesia, Thailand, South Africa and many many European countries like Estonia, Finland, Spain, Portugal, Italy etc.
My favorites are Rio De Janeiro and Bali. I need to have a great internet connection, good infrastructure, seaside, sun, fun people, good food, and nature. I am in love with the nature in Bali! It also has a lot of digital nomads so it’s easy to meet and mingle with fellow remote workers.
My personal favorite place is Rio De Janeiro, Brazil where I go every year for Carnival and then stay for 3 months or so. It’s simply the most fun and vibrant place on earth. I absolutely love it! It has everything that Bali has plus more fun and lots of easy-going people, as well as a great music and dance culture.
5. From which type of place do you prefer to work?
All of them, I like to switch places not to get bored. Around 2 days at home, 1 day at coworking, 2 days in cafes for example.
6. Which places would you like to travel to while working remotely?
In my near-future list are again my favorite places Brazil and Bali. Then I’ll be visiting more countries in Asia and Southern Africa and eventually being more in Spain, Barcelona and/or Portugal, Lisbon.
Those rather bigger seaside cities with good infra, likeminded people, cafes and coworking spaces, startup communities and many smart people are the places I want to be!
7. What would you say to the companies that don’t believe in hiring employees who work remotely?
Don’t believe me or others, but please do believe data, facts, statistics, numbers etc. Here is a nice list he/she should read:
8. Which tools do you use to work remotely?
Sococo, Whereby, Pipedrive, Google Drive, Slack.
9. How do you manage your business and taxes as a remote working professional?
I’m lucky to be Estonian and have an amazing infrastructure to simply manage my company and services online! Everything works, is fast and taxes are reasonable!
If you are not Estonian you can become Estonian e-resident, read more:
10. What advice would you give to people looking to work remotely and companies making the remote switch?
All the info, tips and tricks are out there starting from videos, blogs til supportive programs, retreats. Do it. Life is too short for being stuck somewhere you are not 100% pleased.
For companies: again, read the studies and follow the data.