Everyone who can, wants to travel full time. But how can you keep your job and income? The answer is telecommuting. Internet-based software allows any of us to work from anywhere. Make a pitch to your boss to work remotely. Here are some tips and tools to help you on your way.
Offer to Work Remotely. There are benefits to the company.
Tenure: If your boss values you, that boss is not going to want you to leave the company. If you have a concession like travel, you’re likely to stay much longer. Partly because you’re grateful for the opportunity and partly because it becomes a whole lot harder to find another job.
Offer to take on more valuable work: Offer to upgrade your responsibility or role deliverables for no increase in pay.
If your boss isn’t convinced it will work, offer to do a trial by working from home for a couple of weeks. Keep your schedule to the minute, forego breaks and be more productive than ever. Send an email first thing in the morning so everyone knows you showed up on time. Resist the temptation to go put on a load of washing or take a personal phone call.
Offer to work your current commute time: ok, we’re getting desperate now, but if you’re not getting too far you could offer to work the time you currently spend commuting.
Get more done: without commuting time, you’ll be more available and more productive.
Offer to find new clients abroad: if your employer would benefit from more clients and more business, offer to go to meetings with prospects if sales set up the meetings for you. If you can offer more value as an employee your chances of getting a telecommuting arrangement are improved.
Working hours: This is a big one. If your job needs you to work the business hours in your current office location, your travel will be limited to time zones a few hours either side. The ideal arrangement is for you to get your time-dependent work (dealing with customers, phone calls, meetings) transferred to someone else and you take on additional tasks which don’t require real-time attendance. If you can get your boss to release you from fixed work times and let you finish your work every 24 hours, you have the basis for a global travel lifestyle. If you do work in a different time zone, check your email, Slack and other messages first thing in the morning and last thing at night, even if it’s not your regular work time. Excessive delays in response will frustrate your colleagues.
If your boss doesn’t want to split up the team by letting you telecommute, suggest the whole company goes Traveling together. If it’s a small company or branch office or department, it’s not as crazy as it sounds. You can all still work together at the hotel or resort (either in a suite room or a meeting/conference room which is usually free for guests). See my post on Taking the whole company with you
Improving your availability and productivity
If (after you start Traveling) your boss gets the feeling that this is working out really well, you could work and travel indefinitely. Maintaining that perception of the same or better availability and productivity as was the case when you worked in the office. See my post on Staying Productive While Traveling
Use video calls. This maintains a more personal contact than email. Call your boss and colleagues regularly and attend meetings by video.
Bring the whole office. Seriously. Get your boss to move the whole business and employees to the travel lifestyle. Check how it works.