Yes, friends, you can still have a full-time job and travel the world. Our resident software engineer shares his top tips to help you flourish in your career while on the move.
Can a software engineer be a digital nomad? Absolutely!
We spoke to Gaël Thomas, a senior software engineer at Cococart, to spill the tea on some of his best advice on being productive while living the nomad life.
Tip 1: Take your time while traveling (again)
Most digital nomads are rushing their trips which can be stressful—lots of flights, needing to explore every day, managing work on the side.
Take your time if you aspire to be a productive digital nomad. When you reach a new city, stay for a few weeks and don’t overload yourself. That’s a good part about working remotely—you have the time to enjoy it.
“Thanks to remote work, I’m not rushing destinations. In my opinion, slow travel is the best way, and it reduces stress. It means I try to stay in a country/city for a few weeks before moving.
“It allows me to prioritize and focus on my work during the week and take my time to enjoy the evenings and weekends,” says Gaël.
Tip 2: Set a work schedule
It's always best to have a vague idea of when you start your day and finish it. It's a must-have for your work-life balance.
Thanks to that, you can stay focused and complete your work in the dedicated timeframe (and enjoy your evenings!).
“Deep-focus is your best friend. During this time, try to focus on one task and have no distractions so you can achieve it with your maximum capacity.
“It’s essential if you’re working outside; otherwise, you may be distracted by anything happening around you.”
Tip 3: Socialize at work
One of the most challenging parts of working remotely is the lack of social interactions, which can contribute to some feelings of loneliness.
Don't be shy—ask your colleagues for a 15-30 minutes coffee meeting to get to know them better.
“Propose a social meeting each week as we do at Cococart: Each week, we do one 'Campfire'—an hour and a half meeting where we meet each other, talk about our highlights and lowlights of the week, give kudos to our co-workers, and play a game together.
“It can seem like a short time but trust me, it really helps build up significant team motivation and spirit. Particularly in a remote culture.”
Tip 4: Don’t stay in alone, work from outside
While working remotely, it’s natural you’ll tend to stay in a lot, which isn’t always the healthiest thing.
According to Gaël, working from cafes regularly has helped him get into deep-focus mode and is an excellent way for him to meet other remote workers.
Tip 5: Join a company that trusts you
“Compared to my previous experiences, working at Cococart gave me more freedom in how I structure my time and where I work, while trusting me that I’ll deliver results on time and achieve my goals,” Gael shares.
Before Gaël joined Cococart, he was looking for three things:
- A full-remote startup, ideally worldwide (with the idea of becoming a nomad engineer in Southeast Asia)
- A startup building a software product where he could be actively involved
- A full-stack engineer role (user-facing and the “server/logic” part at the same time)
However when job hunting, it wasn’t easy for him to find a global remote-first company as most companies were recruiting candidates that are between European and US time zones.
That’s when Cococart came into the picture.
He shared: “Some companies are strict when you tell them you’re going to work and travel (they don’t like that). It’s not the case at Cococart. 🎉 I love the remote culture we have. It offers a lot of freedom while, at the same time, you don’t feel isolated or demotivated.
“Everyone is free to manage their time while they reach their goals. It allows me to work from different places and countries (Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand).
“Even if we’re remote worldwide (no offices), I feel even closer to the company and my colleagues than ever before!”
Are you pivoting to a digital nomad life?
If you are looking to join a company that accepts a nomadic lifestyle, join us!
Cococart is actively hiring right now. We’re more than happy to welcome diverse individuals to build impactful products with us!