Interview with Juan Ortega

Juan Ortega UlloaJuan Ortega is a Digital Marketing Manager at Prey Project. You can follow him in Twitter at @ajulloa.

1. How did you started working remotely? 

Starting this year I decided to start doing some part-time remote work so I talked to my boss about it and pitch him the idea (motivation, how long, when, where, and how the communication with the rest of my team would be), he was on board right from the start (the company is fully embracing the remote culture) however he was particularly worried about how my team would perform without my presence in the office, that’s why I decided to change a little bit our day to day routine so instead of constant meetings per days, we started working in sprints, one big planning day, and 2 kind of stand up meetings per week and constant slack communication for any obstacle that we may find along the way.

I know we are far from perfect but we are embracing this new culture and definitely, we will continue to support this kind of part-time remote work in the future.

2. What do you think are the main advantages of remote work?

For me, the freedom of choosing where to work it has been a boost for my productivity and happiness. Being able to interact with different cultures, new languages and learn what the other marketing communities are doing is a game changer for me.

3. Do you think there are disadvantages or that you’re missing something by working remotely?

Definitely, the lack of social engagement with my team has been a challenge for me since the beginning, I try to fill these gaps by interacting more online with them but there is nothing like seeing other people face to face.

Another issue for me has been timing since I’m now currently based in Europe and my team in Latin America so coordinating meetings can be tricky especially if I want to coordinate with the team, our agencies and some clients.

4. From which cities or countries have you worked since you have become remote? 

I have been sharing my time between Spain, France and occasionally in Nicaragua. My favorite places have been Barcelona and St. Jean de Luz (France). I’m seeking the sun and beach any time I can.

5. From which type of place do you prefer to work? 

I tend to go to coffee shops and coworking spaces for social interactions and the energy that you lived there, sometimes it can be loud but I think you have plenty of options out there and you can find any type of place that suits you the best.

6. Which places would you like to travel to while working remotely?

For my next adventure, I would like to try more LaTam or Asia countries.

7. What would you say to the companies that don’t believe in hiring employees who work remotely?

It’s time to change that old mindset!. There are many talented people out there that you can work with. Thanks to technology you can work with anyone from anywhere. Beware that soon remote work might be the norm 😉

8. Which tools do you use to work remotely?

Zoom, Slack Miro, Basecamp and Google Docs are my day to day tools

9. How do you manage your business and taxes as a remote working professional?

Since I’m doing a few months remote this hasn’t been an issue.

10. What advice would you give to people looking to work remotely and companies making the remote switch?

I think you should give it a try, our company is experiencing at first hand the advantages of remote work. Our CEO is seeing how the team culture is changing in a more friendly, open minded and productive environment.

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