Every day, we are told how the world is getting gradually smaller and businesses are getting closer. As we move into the future, we progress to a time in which working on the other side of the world means nothing at all and linking with colleagues on a completely different time frame is just another day at the office. While globalization is making the business world a smaller place, there are some individuals who are taking things to extreme levels. Taking their work with them, they have upped sticks and left their offices for new pastures.
The term “digital nomad” is something that has been making the rounds for the last few years but, unless you are already one, it can be hard to define exactly what living that way means. Unconfined to a desk and an office, the digital nomad travels the world as they please, working remotely from all corners of the globe. Armed with their laptop and enough supplies to last them for as long as they’re away, they find working places anywhere they can, plugging into the local wifi system in order to link to their offices. Looking for opportunities in new places and linking back to their home offices, these people have managed to travel the world, all without losing their jobs.
1. Matthew Kepnes
If you’re looking to make a nomadic life for yourself, all while keeping your day job, then you need to look no further than Matthew Kepnes. Perhaps known more fondly under his pen name Nomadic Matt, Matthew travels for a living, writing about his trips for various publications and teaching others how to make a life for themselves while on the move. Unlike others who find a job before travelling overseas, Matthew found himself at work by accident, stumbling into the world of travel writing as he explored the globe.
While he did not intend to use his blog as a means to fund his lifestyle, that is soon what it became and, by travelling and working at the same time, Matthew was able to share with others hoping to do the same thing just how he went about doing it. While his permanent “base” is New York City, he travels the globe frequently, jetting off on various trips in order to write features and work alongside international brands. Since his blog’s beginnings, Matthew has gone on to realise fantastic achievements and now enjoys a life as a successful travel writer. His book, How To Travel The World On $50 A Day went on to become a bestseller, inspiring others to finally take the trip of their dreams. Utilising his way with words and love of travel, Matthew carved an international life out for himself, from which he is still reaping the benefits.
2. Katie McKnoulty
When it comes to online reading, people are fascinated by other people’s traveling experiences. Revealing an insight into the cultures across the world, travel websites and blogs enable many people to experience new places if they are not able to make the trip for themselves. While the travel blog market is well saturated, there are some which stand out from the crowd. Katie McKnoulty’s hugely successful website The Travelling Light is one of the best insights into travelling and working out there, showcasing how you can freelance your way around the world.
After having worked in marketing and advertising positions in both Australia and England, Katie decided to leave everything she knew behind and travel the world as a creative freelancer. Collecting stories from around the globe, she soon began to interact with a huge variety of creative businesses, picking up work as she went, working remotely on the road. As well as running The Travelling Light, the website on which she shares her travel stories and photography, she is also head of branding and marketing for The Little Sage, an online business that teaches people how to live and work according to their intuition. There could be no better place for a digital nomad; listening to her gut, Katie makes her way across the globe, picking up work as she goes.
3. Jodi Ettenberg
Of course, travelling the world isn’t just for the creatively-minded. Nowadays, it’s very possible to work where you want in any sort of profession. Jodi Ettenberg is certainly proof of this fact; after enjoying a successful career in corporate law, she decided to pack it all in and travel the world. Not one to turn her back on her work, however, Jodi decided to incorporate the two things into one big project, founding blog Legal Nomads to keep her friends and family updated. As her website grew in popularity, the job offers began to trickle in from across the globe and, before she knew it, Jodi had multiple offers to manage social media and appear as a guest lecturer at international conferences.
As she became more at ease with life on the road, her professional perspective shifted. Using her website as a mean of self-expression, Jodi soon began writing about local cuisine and cooking, sharing recipes from across the world with her hungry readers. Now, her life is split into two professions; in the summer, she lives and works in North America, focusing on social media. In the winters, she journeys to Asia, travelling around the different countries in search of new recipes and ways of living as a freelancer. While her working life is hectic, it’s filled with new experiences and working opportunities. Saying goodbye to a solid career path, Jodi managed to carve out a new one for herself.
4. Dan Andrews
With the worlds of business and travel quickly becoming caught up with one another, experts in both fields are fast becoming sought after. Having the knowhow, then, is a very lucrative thing indeed. Dan Andrew knows all about this, having founded his business off the back of his travels. Initially founding an ecommerce business in order to produce and ship niche furniture and objects, Dan soon expanded his scope, using the company as a way in which to share his experiences and work. His website, Tropical MBA, soon shifted its focus from his burgeoning business idea to his life as a digital nomad and readers across the world started to pay more and more attention.
Now, Tropical MBA is all about helping creatives and entrepreneurs to find connections as they make their way around the globe. An online travel community, the site enables users to post comments and think pieces, sharing their information with people from across the globe. Thanks to his website, Dan is now in the position to move and work as he pleases, picking up new clients from all walks of business. Setting himself up as a networking expert, Dan has enabled others to live their dreams and find work as they explore the world.
5. Adrianna Tan
For businesses around the world, going international is the only logical way to make it big but, unless you have connections within certain countries, it can prove somewhat difficult to find a way in. Enter Adrianna Tan. The brain behind startup company Me Launch Pretty One Day, Adrianna helps technology startups launch in the Asian market and see their product succeed on huge scales. Having worked in different positions within the technology world, Tan saw a gap in the Asian market and, using her knowhow and capacity to travel, set upon launching a new company which would aid companies in their aim to make the world a smaller place.
While her business is based in the already international community of Singapore, Adrianna has to travel a lot in her work to other areas in Asia. As well as linking with new companies and setting up meetings, Adrianna is also the driving force behind a number of business workshops across Asia, for which she has to travel frequently. Within cities and countries, her job involves a lot of moving around, as she finds new clients and links them to the technological industry across the world. By finding a business niche, however, she has made her career work and thanks to her capacity for quick change, Adrianna is thriving as a digital nomad.
Travelling the world is something that the majority of people hope to do at some point in their lives and yet, finding the time and money can be the biggest reason why people forgo their plans. By listening to their gut instinct and following their hearts, these people have managed to travel while working and build connections across the globe. It’s not all down to luck; sometimes, it takes hard graft, communication and a little time. After all, what is travelling for?