5 Benefits of Being a Digital Nomad
Wed, 16 Sep 2015 | Written by Corporate Suites Staff
Workers have been trying to leave the confines of the workplace while still getting paid for centuries. With the technological advances in modern telecommunications, such as an ever broadening mobile access to the internet, and easy-to-find “free” Wi-Fi Hubs; the era of the digital business nomad is in its heyday, with a bright future ahead. Definition of a Digital Nomad: An individual who exploits modern day communications technology in order to perform normal in-house business work duties, outside of the traditional workplace environment. IE: Home, coffee shops, public libraries, vehicles, etc. Digital Nomads are a diverse bunch of working wanderers whose bulk includes the ever growing freelance population of writers, photographers, digital age designers of all sorts, and self-employed entrepreneurs who have not had the need yet to expand to a permanent office. According to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, 3.3 million workers in the United States were telecommuting at least half of the time by 2013 (not including self-employed). The trend of remote workers leaving the constraints of the traditional workplace, for the freedom and flexibility of being a digital nomad, is expected to steadily grow by 2016 and beyond. There is also a wealthier class of digital nomads, which travel across the country or internationally and rent temporary workspace from Co-sharing outfits in numerous major cities. Some also choose to simply work out of their hotel rooms as if it was a standard business office. This is the domain of the successful startup entrepreneur who is setting up or promoting their new business, or a business owner who has multiple shops, offices, factories, etc. in different locations, either nationally or globally, which requires them to travel a substantial amount of the time. Below are the Top 5 benefits of being a Digital Nomad: 1. No More Commuting Traffic, traffic, traffic, hectic commutes that take up precious hours of your life and replace them with stress filled, dangerous unpleasantness, draining your workday enthusiasm before you even get to the workplace, then crushing what is left of your patience and mental wellbeing in the exhausting fight to drive back home at the end of the day. Not having to commute to work is one of the major benefits to being a digital nomad. Choosing a close, quiet, workspace, or having the freedom to strategically navigate your working hours around rush hour, can be a psychological and productive godsend. A new study on the average American worker’s commuting times, by project.wnyc.org, states that the nation’s workforce on average commutes 24.4 minutes to the job site, add another 24.4 minutes trying to get home during rush hour, if you are lucky, and that’s almost an hour minimum out of your busy day, every workday. From my experience, 24.4 minutes sounds like a conservative number. Add on at least double that time if one takes the bus to work. Even carpooling eats up valuable personal time accommodating everyone else in the group in the tedious process of going to and from the workplace. 2. Choice of Workspace Some workers feel that just about anywhere else is a more positive working environment than being trapped in a confining office cubicle all day. The main complaint that standard office workers have, is the mind-crushing stifling of creativity that happens when isolated in a small boring office box. For the progressive remote worker, choosing their personal style of workplace, promotes inspiration, deflects boredom, and increases productivity, all with the simple accomplishment of finding a stimulating and interesting spot to work in, with an adequate internet access. According to an article in the Huffington Post: • Wi-Fi speeds have increased significantly with each release. 11a / 54Mbps / 1999 11n / 450Mbps / 2009 11ac-wave1 / 1.3Gbps / 2012 • There will be more than 7 billion new Wi-Fi enabled devices in the next 3 years as of 2014. • 71% of all mobile communications flows over Wi-Fi. • 90% of people move between devices to accomplish a goal. Reaching customers on-the-go is more important than ever before. • 64% of hotels now offer free Wi-Fi. 3. Ability to Travel Taking advantage of both the nomadic digital working lifestyle, and the ever dropping gas prices of 2015, can be a remote workers ticket to fun and adventure, while also accomplishing some worthwhile production. For the family person with children, this is a great way to spend quality time with the loved ones, and still put out quality work on the go. Given a choice between the office, or the beach, park, event, or comfortable hotel, the choice for most people should be easy. The ability to both travel, and work, is one of the most convenient and emotionally rewarding benefits of being a digital nomad. 4. Flexible Work Hours For the digital nomad, the daily grind of the 9 to 5 workplace is no longer a prerequisite of climbing the ladder of success. Digital nomads have the ability to choose when, where, and how much work they need to do in one day. Weekends, nights, holidays, all once office nightmare shifts for the overworked or underappreciated, are all left up to the worker’s choice and necessity. The work simply is accomplished when it needs to be done according to the workers needs and abilities. Obligations are fulfilled at the remote workers own pace, and deadlines are met by responsible use of time management. This means, seldom having to miss a child or family member’s special event; this also means being able to schedule your work around your daily life, not your life around your work. 5. Being Your Own Boss The easiest to convey benefit of being a working digital nomad is, of course, “Being Your Own Boss.” Even if you are technically working for someone else, basically every other aspect besides the specifics of the client’s project is totally left up to you, essentially, making-you-your-own-boss! The pitfall that needs to be remembered when being your own boss, is that if you are an irresponsible boss who shirks your duties whenever it is convenient for you to do so, then you will have an unproductive worker as well. Routine and self-discipline are the best course of action in insuring that you are a productive and efficient, digitally nomadic self-boss.
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