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travel, remote work, digital nomad

These digital nomads now live “location independent” in diverse cities and you can too!

Professors Rachael A. Woldoff, West Virginia University and Robert Litchfield, Washington & Jefferson College share the stories of digital nomads who embarked on “location independent” lives and how remote workers can follow. 

If one thing is clear about remote work, it’s this: Many people prefer it and don’t want their bosses to take it away.

When the pandemic forced office employees into lockdown and cut them off from spending in-person time with their colleagues, they almost immediately realized that they favor remote work over their traditional office routines and norms.

As remote workers of all ages contemplate their futures – many Americans are asking hard questions about whether they wish to return to their old lives, and what they’re willing to sacrifice or endure in the years to come.

Even before the pandemic, there were people asking whether office life jibed with their aspirations.

We spent years studying “digital nomads” – workers who had left behind their homes, cities and most of their possessions to embark on what they call “location independent” lives. Our research taught us several important lessons about the conditions that push workers away from offices and major metropolitan areas, pulling them toward new lifestyles.

Legions of people now have the chance to reinvent their relationship to their work in much the same way.

travel, rio de janeiro,

Digital nomads flock to new more afforable cities in Latin America, Europe, Asia, and more. (Mirante Dona Marta, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, by @davicostalf on Unsplash.)

Big-city bait and switch

Most digital nomads started out excited to work in career-track jobs for prestigious employers. Moving to cities like New York and London, they wanted to spend their free time meeting new people, going to museums and trying out new restaurants.

But then came the burnout.

Although these cities certainly host institutions that can inspire creativity and cultivate new relationships, digital nomads rarely had time to take advantage of them. Instead, high cost of living, time constraints and work demands contributed to an oppressive culture of materialism and workaholism.

Pauline, 28, who worked in advertising helping large corporate clients to develop brand identities through music, likened city life for professionals in her peer group to a “hamster wheel.” (The names used in this article are pseudonyms, as required by research protocol.)

“The thing about New York is it’s kind of like the battle of the busiest,” she said. “It’s like, ‘Oh, you’re so busy? No, I’m so busy.’”

digital nomad, travel,

New freedoms and new opportunities await for digital nomads. (Photo by Alexander Mils on Unsplash.)

Most of the digital nomads we studied had been lured into what urbanist Richard Florida termed “creative class” jobs – positions in design, tech, marketing and entertainment. They assumed this work would prove fulfilling enough to offset what they sacrificed in terms of time spent on social and creative pursuits.

Yet these digital nomads told us that their jobs were far less interesting and creative than they had been led to expect. Worse, their employers continued to demand that they be “all in” for work – and accept the controlling aspects of office life without providing the development, mentorship or meaningful work they felt they had been promised. As they looked to the future, they saw only more of the same.

Ellie, 33, a former business journalist who is now a freelance writer and entrepreneur, told us: “A lot of people don’t have positive role models at work, so then it’s sort of like ‘Why am I climbing the ladder to try and get this job? This doesn’t seem like a good way to spend the next twenty years.’”

By their late 20s to early 30s, digital nomads were actively researching ways to leave their career-track jobs in top-tier global cities.

Looking for a fresh start

Although they left some of the world’s most glamorous cities, the digital nomads we studied were not homesteaders working from the wilderness; they needed access to the conveniences of contemporary life in order to be productive. Looking abroad, they quickly learned that places like Bali in Indonesia, and Chiang Mai in Thailand had the necessary infrastructure to support them at a fraction of the cost of their former lives.

With more and more companies now offering employees the choice to work remotely, there’s no reason to think digital nomads have to travel to southeast Asia – or even leave the United States – to transform their work lives.

remote work, digital nomad

Many have already migrated away from the most expensive areas to smaller cities and towns. (Photo by Samer Daboul on Pexels.)

During the pandemic, some people have already migrated away from the nation’s most expensive real estate markets to smaller cities and towns to be closer to nature or family. Many of these places still possess vibrant local cultures. As commutes to work disappear from daily life, such moves could leave remote workers with more available income and more free time.

[You’re smart and curious about the world. So are The Conversation’s authors and editors. You can get our highlights each weekend.]

The digital nomads we studied often used savings in time and money to try new things, like exploring side hustles. One recent study even found, somewhat paradoxically, that the sense of empowerment that came from embarking on a side hustle actually improved performance in workers’ primary jobs.

The future of work, while not entirely remote, will undoubtedly offer more remote options to many more workers. Although some business leaders are still reluctant to accept their employees’ desire to leave the office behind, local governments are embracing the trend, with several U.S. cities and states – along with countries around the world – developing plans to attract remote workers.

This migration, whether domestic or international, has the potential to enrich communities and cultivate more satisfying work lives.The Conversation


Rachael A. Woldoff, Professor of Sociology, West Virginia University and Robert Litchfield, Associate Professor of Business, Washington & Jefferson College

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

business travel

Is Omicron impacting business travel because of corporate and government restrictions?

Are you a business traveler? Omicron travel restrictions have put a damper on global business travel. New policies and ongoing developments are currently hindering a return to travel as we know it. 

However, the travel industry continues to reflect progress and optimism in its long-term outlook for 2022, according to the latest poll from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world’s largest business travel association and leader in education, research, networking, and advocacy.

“Here, at the start of a new year, the business travel industry and business travelers continue to face a dynamically changing landscape due to Omicron. One comment received from a poll respondent readily sums it up: ‘Uncertainty is a huge wet blanket on [business] travel,’” said Suzanne Neufang, CEO, GBTA. 

“Despite the wave of Omicron and the ripple of challenges it has created, there are positive signs, and industry professionals continue to be optimistic for the long–term outlook of global business travel.”  

This most recent poll is the 25th in GBTA’s COVID-19 Recovery series, tracking the pulse of the global business travel industry during the pandemic. Below are a few highlights from the January poll

Omicron business travel poll highlights:

Optimism for the long haul – Three in four travel managers expect business travel volume at their company will be much (17%) or somewhat (58%) higher in 2022 than in 2021. Another one in ten (12%) expect business travel to remain about the same as 2021, but few (5%) expect it to be lower.  

Company travel cancellation decreases – Poll results show a decline in the percentage of companies that continue to suspend or cancel business travel. Sixty-eight percent of GBTA member companies have not yet opened international travel, compared to 79% in the October 2021 GBTA poll, and 29% have not opened domestic business travel versus 38% in October. 

Current business impacts – Six in ten (60%) suppliers/TMCs report their bookings from corporate clients decreased from the month prior. One in five (21%) characterize their bookings from corporate customers as having increased.

Comparing variants – When asked to compare Omicron and Delta variant concerns, 43% report they are either less worried about Omicron compared to Delta, and 45% are equally concerned.

Most significant barriers – When asked to name the single greatest barrier to business travel, 43% of survey respondents cited government policies that restrict travel or make it difficult (such as entry restrictions or mandatory quarantines). Travel managers based in the UK (66%) and Europe (62%) were more likely than those in North America (33%) to cite government policies as being the single greatest barrier to business travel. Conversely, North American travel managers (27%) were more likely than those in Europe (15%) to say company policies restricting employees from traveling are the biggest barrier. 

Getting back out there – Despite Omicron, most travel managers feel employees are willing to travel. Two in three (64%) feel their employees are “willing” or “very willing” to travel for business in the current environment. However, this number was down from 78% in the October GBTA poll. A majority of seven in ten (72%) GBTA members and stakeholders report they would definitely or probably travel for business. However, respondents based in Europe (49%) are more likely than those based in North America (35%) to report that their company has canceled all or most business trips.   

You might be interested: 6 Tips to spot counterfeit N95, KN95, and KN94

masks when shopping online

While we still have a long way to go before global business travel returns to its pre-COVID norms, this recent poll shows that many remain optimistic for the future of travel despite the challenges. 

Up in the Air, the movie

Travel new section for smart Latinas on the go

Up in the Air, the movie

Up in the Air, the movie

A while ago, I started thinking about expanding our sections, reorganizing them into topics that are most sought or read by our LatinasInBusiness.us (LIBizus). For many years, I had -and still do!- the passion for traveling, and used to combine work and pleasure in my trips so I was wondering if a smart business traveler section would be something our readers and followers would enjoy.

And then I was unexpectedly invited to participate at the International Association of Hispanic Meeting Professionals Association Annual Conference in Atlantic City, NJ, this past October. I saw the event as a positive wink from “the Universe” to start our new section Travel and Work.

portrait of young businesswoman at airport

Depending on how you live your business travels, a world of opportunity and excitement awaits to those who are road warriors. You can have a miserable time going from one sordid hotel to another and one annoying meeting to the next, or you can combine it with a little downtime pleasure while on the road, which builds a positive mood and helps with your travel goals.

However, only knowing how to take advantage of the best resources, places and traveling tips can make your work on the go more enjoyable. As in the movie, “Up in the Air,” sometimes a little fun, meeting new people and creating more comfortable situations for yourself can compensate the most miserable of the jobs.

Hotel tray

Being familiar with the array of hidden perks provided during flights, at hotels and in local restaurants might help you become the winner you need to be to close difficult deals or win hard negotiations. And why not, having the extra benefit of spending some “me” time away from family, children and other obligations, can be enjoyed as a mini-vacation that allows you to come back to them with a big smile!

As a consultant, and having clients in nine states, I used to travel quite a bit. Being on the road was always a challenge to my imagination and to my budget. Finding those little details that improved the experience were essential to my performance on the road. Who wanted to face a reluctant client after a bad night sleep? Or who was willing to stand five or six hours in front of trainees when you had been sick all night after an awful meal?

Hopefully, our Travel and Work section will help you find those amenities and benefits on the road that can lift your spirit and make the whole travel experience a real pleasure. We also encourage you to share those you already are familiar with or tell us about your bad or good stories while traveling. We also invite travel consultants and meeting planners to become contributor to our new section. So get your bags ready, LIBizus, we are on the go!

 

finding love during trip long-distance relationships

All work no play? 3 Best places to find an amazing date on your work hustle

October is here already and I was thinking about you! With all the Halloween parties coming up, I thought you could use some help finding a party date. And you never know where a party date could lead to!

I know what you’re thinking, “I am too busy”……”Jen, there’s no point there aren’t any good ones left.” That’s why I am sharing three of my favorite tips that will be sure to help you have a date with a Hans Solo and stay away from the Ghouls.

  1. Your PHONE IS A GREAT TOOL!
Coffee meets bagel app

Coffee Meets Bagel app

Dating apps are great and there are plenty to choose from. I highly recommend two, the first is Coffee Meets Bagel the second is Cheekd.

Coffee Meets Bagel is a FREE app for Team Apple & Team Droid that launched in NYC –which means will have its highest matches in tri-state area.

Based on your preferences, it gives you a daily “bagel” at noon, which is a date for lunch that you can like or not pass. It’s connected to Facebook so you can see if you have mutual friends but it does not show up on your Facebook page so none of your friends know you are on. Also, my favorite part is that there are no profiles to have to go through! My dating clients have gone on a few great dates with this app and love it. Also there’s no staying online forever because they only give you 24 hours to decide to get offline and go on a date!

Cheeked app

Cheek’d app

CHEEK’d APP LOVE IT! Perfect for the busy professional and only an Apple App right now but great for meeting someone in your direct vicinity in real-time vs virtual time. No lost opportunities anymore! The Bluetooth technology allows the app to work on the train, on a plane or during lunch time. You’ll get a notification if someone who meets your criteria is within 30 feet of you. If you’re near a potential spark, Cheekd makes sure you know about it.

Read more about Cheek’ed    Lori Cheek

 

 

2.  Next place, on your THE COMMUTE, TRAIN, SUBWAY OR BUS.

Businesswoman Commuting To Work On Train And Using Laptop

Don’t read that book, pop in those headphones or stay glued to your phone. Make a genuine effort to be aware of your surroundings. Even if you drive, I am sure you are walking some of it. Act like the LOVE & FUN FBI. Your job is to look around, enjoy your surroundings, people watch, sightsee, even if this is the tenth time you have taken this commute. Look for the beauty and the need of the things you look at. One think I do is look at how objects help so many people. I promise you it will be different. I remember a game I used to play when I was a kid, I would look at someone and imagine their amazing life story. I do this now when I want to make new friends. Look, listen and feel for the opportunity for LOVE & FUN. Stay curious of the possibilities. Pick one person on every commute you will exchange a smile, a hello and ask them a question (people love sharing their opinions!). Amazing loves amazing, so he or she will find you while you are on your expedition of life.

3. MAKE THE TIME!

Woman looking at the view in balloon exercises room

The other great place to find a great date is at the places YOU have meant to go to. No more waiting. Make the time for that thing you have wanted to do, that place you have wanted to go eat at, that vacation you’ve had on hold. Stop procrastinating. If you don’t make the time for yourself, odds are you won’t meet someone who will stop and make the time for you. Everyone has the same amount of time in 1 day we just all use it differently. Prioritize your values into a life you are proud of. If you value family time or friend time but you are always at work, your soul won’t be happy because you are misaligned on your values. So make time for what’s valuable to you. If work is your highest value, bring your happiness there, talk to people, get to know them, take the time to have coffee dates with colleagues that seem great to get to know, men or women.

Ready to use one of these suggestions? Have a question, comment to this article. Already used it, tell us how it went, we’d love to hear from you.

GET YOUR COMPLIMENTARY 15-MINUTE LOVE BREAKTHROUGH SESSION ON OCTOBER 16 AT THE SHCCNJ ANNUAL CONVENTION

As always, if you are ready to get crystal clear on your life, gain confidence on your actions and goals, and build real love connections in your life, stop by the LatinasInBusiness.us booth and sign up for a complimentary 15-minute Love Breakthrough Session at the SHCCNJ Annual Convention where you will get a personalized mini-action plan. Don’t miss this great opportunity to meet with me, your Clarity, Confidence and Connection Coach!

SHCCNJ Annual Convention and Awards Luncheons
October 16 at The Brownstone
Register here!

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