Mobile Officing: Wanderlust, Creativity and Being a Businessman.

Posted May 28, 2019 by Jonathan Galbreath

The concept of a traditional work environment has always been a challenge for me. Post-grad, I lasted two years in a cubical farm before attempting to define my own work environment. I feel I can now do that somewhat, and a key has been striking a balance between my personal desires and professional objectives.  

Personally, traveling is the most important thing in my life for growth and creativity. Being in a foreign place can change us in many ways, with the subconscious take-away providing more knowledge than we could ever comprehend. Professionally, however, I have a responsibility to sustain and grow our company. I owe it to myself, my family and co-workers.

Balancing the two can be a challenge but is not impossible. At the end of last year, my wife, 4- and 6-year old sons and I, traveled for three months, starting in Hawaii > New Zealand > Australia > Papua New Guinea > Australia > Argentina > Chile, all while continuing to work. 

It challenged my personal and work ethics and my patience with technology. Working overseas and on the road can be tough: jetlag, time changes, work schedules, cell service, internet, odd outlets, terrible coffee…but here are a few things I learned from our three-month stint on the road.

WiFi is everywhere, but it’s often laughable.

The hardest obstacle for me was a solid WiFi connection. I could get a random blistering fast connection in the middle of a jungle and then struggle for 5kbps in urban areas.

Global cellular service is a must.

SIM cards are great but getting a call to go through was painful. So, I turned on global roaming – priceless. Even in the most remote parts of some of these countries, I could still get a signal.  

Mobile hotspot saved my life.

Consequently, I was able to use the global roaming service to create a hotspot on my phone. Which I used more that 50% of the time to send emails and files back to the United States.

Put everything you’ll never need on “the cloud”.

I often deal with very large files. Sending them was a nightmare. Putting everything you can on the cloud will make it easy for you to send links directly to clients and co-workers. Also, whatever file you think you won’t need…take them.

And then, put it on a hard drive, x 2.

Downloading from the cloud was also a nightmare, so make sure you have a duplicate copy on a hard drive. And, for peace of mind and less that 100 bucks, carry a backup.

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