Millennials are infamous for their unexplainable adoration of iPhones, iPods, iPads… Life in general, really, but if you stop to think about it – this is where their craze for the materialistic ends.
Unlike their older counterparts, they don’t invest their money in cars or properties. No, to them, experiences are of much greater value. In addition, the material things they buy are only there to enhance this lifestyle. They support sustainable shopping and eco-friendly products.
How can they afford it? It’s quite simple – they’ve managed to implement work into their nomadic lives, and the new technologies have done nothing but support them.
By 2025 this generation will comprise ¾ of the global workforce, and their adventurous, yet hard-working spirit will result in increased number of people looking for a work that will not tie them to a physical office, but allow them to explore all world wonders.
1. What’s so great about Digital Nomadism
To some, this may come as a surprise, but those who work remotely showed to be much happier, thus more productive than the employees trapped in cubicles. Namely, when you eliminate constant distractions, like meetings, conversations and office noise in general, you get things done faster and meticulously.
Furthermore, aside from the perks of globetrotting we’ve already mentioned in the introduction, digital nomadism provides a wider range of opportunities. What we mean by this is – if your creative spirit yearns for a position no one is looking for in your area, there’s nothing stopping you from applying for a job across the globe.
Who knows – the position might be more financially appealing.
2. How to become a digital nomad
Can anyone become a digital nomad? Certainly, but it’s not as easy as packing your suitcase, hopping on the plane and hoping for the best – this is where only a movie can guarantee a happy ending.
Researching potential locations
Are there any destinations that appeal to your taste? Cities you’ve always wanted to explore? However, most importantly – does the location of choice offer satisfactory conditions for digital nomads?
It is of utmost importance to check out just how financially demanding the place is and whether you will be able to provide yourself with adequate workstation and reliable internet connection, but also bare necessities – a roof over your head and food on your table.
Prepare for the unexpected
Financially, that is – if your Mac breaks down, or you finish the project that’s been the stable source of income the previous period, you’ll need a savings account to rely on until you get back on track.
You can always rent your place back home and have a steady money inflow for such situations. Just be sure to store your most valuable items with services like Supereasystorage to keep them safe until you get back.
Improve communication skills
The key to landing a freelancing opportunity lies in your collaborative skills. You are deprived of face-to-face communication, mimics and body language, and written communication all you’ve got. Through this medium, you need to be as straightforward and clear as possible, especially if there is a language barrier between you and the employee or colleagues.
Over-communication is recommended – summing up all meeting notes, setting and sending calendar invites – this way you’ll have everything documented, just in case.
Take advantage of the tools
Digital nomads operate like independent businesses, and if not organized properly, you might drown in a workload flood, losing valuable time intended for traveling.
Freelancers are advised to implement project management tools like Trello, BaseCamp, Asana and similar to keep track of their projects, alongside accounting software’s such as AND CO to automate the paperwork (contract, invoices, etc.).
Special tip: Downloading as many tools as possible is a classic rookie mistake – it’s not about the quantity, but the quality, that is finding the right combo of tools that will satisfy your special requirements.
3. What the career choices are
We finally arrive to the point where a digital nomad opts for a career that will follow them on their journey. The best place to start is on one of the reputable freelancing platforms like Upwork or People Per Hour. But what will you be looking for?
In its broadest meaning, encompassing website, app and software development. Whether you’re a Python, WordPress or Ruby on Rails expert (or beginner), you’re bound to find a decently-paid job on, for instance, Remote OK.
Like programming, web design allows digital nomads to cash in on their knowledge and creativity, even if you lack coding experience, by using WordPress or SquareSpace. In time, harnessing the power of the World Wide Web, you can enrich your knowledge and broaden your scope of services.
Email, social media, inbound or content marketing – whichever best suits your interests and skillsets can be conducted from a remote location. What’s great about marketing is the abundance of tools which allow you to plan ahead and automate certain processes, thus leaving you enough room to organize your (free) time.
Owing to a multitude of machine translation tools almost all agencies use today, a translator is free to do their work from wherever. And since all the (specialized) dictionaries can be found in a digital form, all you really need is on your laptop.
Writing and editing
Traveling first leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. On the one hand, you can draft content pieces for marketing purposes, or share a story of your own – the latter one combined with social media involvement can turn you into an influencer.
From languages to sciences – rest assured Gen Z members slowly move to the online classroom instead of opting for a traditional tutor. You can sign up with one of the agencies to help you find students, but careful with the time zones – you don’t want to be stuck in Mexico explaining integrals in the middle of the night to someone in China.
Work and travel – sounds like an outstanding compromise, doesn’t it?
So what’s preventing you from joining the digital nomad community?