This is part one in a series about how we work at Bunny Studio. We’re a remote company, so we’re based all over the world. We live different lives and come from different cultures, so our ways of working are unique. This is a place where we talk about the challenges of working remotely, as well as share our experiences.
Name, job title and location?
Emmy Tither. I’m a Content Strategist. I currently live in Rheenendal, South Africa but I move around a lot.
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How long have you worked remotely?
Since October 2017, so not long at all.
Is Bunny Studio the first remote company you’ve worked for?
What does a typical workday look like for you?
I keep a pretty tight work schedule, but that’s mainly so I make sure to work on my Masters’ thesis regularly. I’m working full-time while studying, so a strict schedule keeps me accountable.
I usually wake up at about 6:30 am, even though I’m not a morning person, to get personal work done and be active for a few hours. I also walk my dog, Mallory. I start my Content Strategist day at around 10:00 am and end it around 7:00 pm, with an hour break in the middle. During that hour, I either run errands or do some yoga and have some lunch. I get very antsy if I don’t move around every couple hours, so I take frequent breaks. It’s usually a cup of tea and a quick dog walk, or at the least stepping outside. Some days are busier than others, but most days I manage to get outdoors a couple times. Then, after I finish, I step away from the computer. Or at least from work stuff. It was surprising to me, but I find it easier to relax after work now than when I worked in an office. Maybe because I know I can just reach over and tackle a problem if something is nagging me? But yeah, I’ve found it easier to disengage from work now that I work from home.
About one day a week I’ll work from a coffee shop during the day, but I prefer working from home. I can be with my dog all day and, since I’m currently living on a small farm, I have space to roam around and explore. Next year, my partner and I are planning on traveling around the Americas in a van. Working remotely gives me the freedom to move around. As someone who likes to see as many places as possible, that’s a definite bonus.
How does working remotely benefit you? How does it challenge you?
Work now adapts to my life, rather than the other way around. Because I have to make fewer sacrifices (in personal time, energy and mental stress) in my private life for work, I work smarter and better. Working remotely challenges my time management skills, though. Big time. I’m in a challenging role and in a challenging postgrad program, so I need to be careful to keep my life in balance. Being able to work from wherever I need to makes things easier, though.
Do you have any advice for someone who is thinking about making the change to remote work?
The two skills you’re really gonna need are time management, yes, and communication. Not only face to face communication, or over email, but in documenting your work well. Working with people all over the globe means that often your teammates aren’t in the same time zone as you. So you have to take good notes and document yourself well so that everyone stays aligned.
Did your life change when you started working remotely? If so, how?
The standard of my work definitely improved. Working from any place with wifi gives me more freedom to travel and structure my workday in a way that suits me best. I can take those frequent movement breaks during the day, for example. I appreciate the degree of autonomy and trust that goes with being part of a distributed team. Also, I stress less. I don’t have to spend time thinking about my commute, how to dress for a dress code or how Mallory will fare while I’m at the office. This has definitely improved my mental health on the whole and made me more productive.
It also bears mentioning that Bunny Studio does workplace communication very well. That’s always super important, but it’s especially so for a remote company. I always know what my goals are, how to achieve them and how to ask for help along the way. That contributes a lot to how valued I feel as an employee, which makes me even happier to work here.
Thanks so much! Anything else you’d like to add?
Yep. Working remotely definitely isn’t for everyone. You need to be quite self-disciplined. That being said though, it’s worth it. I hope I never need to work in a standard office again. The level of freedom and location independence that I now enjoy would be very hard to leave behind.