The Future of Work - Remote Working at dualoop: Interview With Feim

We’re continuing with our remote work articles series! We have realised that the future of work is actively changing. Especially when it comes to the freedom of working from home and choosing where to work.  Where do candidates want to work the most today? Employees' preferred ways of working and motivations have changed brutally since the pandemic. 

It’s undeniable that people want to work remotely or in a hybrid working model. This does come with a challenge. Everyone experiences this new working method differently. That's why we have launched our remote article series so that our loopers can share their experiences with you.

Why not me?

I thought about one other person to interview for our remote working article series, and I thought… Why not me? I’m also working remotely and I’d love to share my experience with you guys. So yeah, hey, it’s me! Feim. I’m part of the marketing team here at dualoop. I’m the one writing this article. Hello!

Let me introduce myself to you  

I’m fairly new in the business. I honestly had no idea what product management meant when I started this job. And I'm not going to lie, it's still a bit blurry. I’ve done several internships before in marketing and communication but this is my first actual job in the field and my first remote job as well.

Before, I’ve always had to go to the office. I didn’t have the freedom to plan my day, or to travel when I wanted to (I’m an avid traveller who’s almost never home). It wasn’t convenient. On the other hand, I’ve always had personal projects in graphic design and video, so I always kind of worked remotely for myself. 

When Covid hit the first time, I was finishing my thesis. What better way to finish my thesis than be in lockdown whilst being forbidden to socialise. I finally could get some work done. In that sense, I loved the first lockdown. My intense lifestyle of travelling and being busy finally came to an end and I got to relax, spend some family time and work on my thesis. When the second pandemic hit, however, I couldn’t take it. I graduated already but had no job. So I started travelling and stayed in countries that had very low restrictions. And that’s when I realised how important it would be for me to work and travel at the same time. That’s when I’m the most productive and am at my best mentally and physically.

When I found this job at dualoop, it changed my life for the best. I could still have my travel plans, go to places for personal projects and events and still work in a company that gives me the freedom and trust to do so. I couldn’t have asked any better.

That’s not surprising!  In order to hire the best, you need to deliver the best benefits package to your employees in an innovative way. And that’s what “the work from anywhere policy”delivers. Companies like Airbnb have totally understood that, and are setting the example for many companies.

Today, living in the digital world, it does not matter where you are as long you produce the expected outcomes and make an impact. Also having a choice of "where I work from" implies everyone works within their comfort zone. You have the choice. It makes working more inclusive and give everyone the chance to perform the way they perform the best.

How did working remotely affect me physically and mentally? 

Mentally, many people say that remote working is exciting in the beginning. However, they expect you to discover how isolating it can get afterwards when you spend time alone. But in my opinion, that’s really up to you. You can go to different places, visit friends during your break, work with friends that work remotely as well or go work in a sunny island. If you have a family, that will also allow you to spend more time with them.

My way of "working from home" is totally different from the classic work from home. But that’s the point. Remote work is flexible. It’s supposed to be. You can construct your own experience and create the situation that’s best for you.

Physically, I haven't fully reaped the benefits yet. I honestly admire people that workout every day and have a certain physical routine. I’m not one of these people. However, one way remote working has affected me is that now I go on more walks, feel more comfortable stretching around my working area and sometimes do 5 jumping jacks (hey, it’s better than nothing!). I also LOVE walking meetings. I can do some chores during the day and still be productive for work.

Because I’m also travelling at the same time, I go on hikes during the weekends or at the end of the day rather than just going back home from the office and binge watch a Netflix series. In that sense, I’ve continued being more active. My social life is also busier since I’m always meeting new people in new places. I feel way healthier mentally. I’m always busy and don’t feel like I’m wasting any day. Just like Andrej as well, working remotely allows me to have a healthier diet since I get to cook nutritious meals instead of eating a sandwich or Belgian fries during my lunch break. 

I can travel whenever I want, wherever I want

Whenever, Wherever… just like Shakira said, that’s how I would summarise my remote working experience. As I previously mentioned, I’m an avid traveller. I love it. It gives me the biggest buzz. I love meeting new people and discovering new cultures. And I think that’s the biggest point for me. 

Working remotely changed my life for the better. I now have the freedom to travel whenever I want and wherever I want, whilst still being able to work. As long as I’m productive, everything is alright. I feel very blessed to have the opportunity and the trust given by dualoop in that sense. 

Remote working allows me to be productive

I have been productive working remotely. I can plan my day however I want and finish something in the evening if I felt like I was being distracted during the day. I can focus the best whilst remote working because I work best in noisy environments and I don’t have the usual distraction. I can just put on some music, and focus on my work. It’s always been a dream of mine. 

However, whenever I can and am in Brussels, I try to go back to the office. I also love being at the office to see the team and interact with my colleagues. This also makes me more excited to actually go back. I remember the last time I went to the office I was genuinely excited because the working atmosphere is so welcoming.

One thing is missing… the social aspect with colleagues

I love my colleagues and I do wish I could see them more often than I already do. That’s one thing I regret not being able to do more often. However, I do believe that I was able to build strong relationships with my colleagues whilst remote working. dualoop is a fairly young company. Every time I had the opportunity to go to the office, I had an incredible time. We all get along pretty well and the dynamic is really good. 

We also have meetings every single day and several times during the day. Even though I totally understand that it’s human nature to interact with the people in the same space as you, I never felt left out.

Working setting

One thing I struggle with is having a stable working setting. Since I’m mostly staying in hostels, having a comfy place where I can work isn’t always the easiest. So I always end up in cafes, restaurants, a friend’s place or the hostel’s lobby or lounge. I do work very efficiently in chaos, so that doesn’t bother me that much at the end of the day. However, finding a plug for my computer or stable wifi hasn't always been the easiest (well, thank you Orange for saving me with the unlimited mobile data plan).

Remote working is here to stay

As Andrej said, if someone doesn’t want to work or can’t focus, that would also happen in the office. The only downside of remote working would be the lack of human contact and one-on-one interaction in real life, which can help some people in their day-to-day lives. But talent is all over the world. If you’re closing yourself to remote working, you might be missing out on some talents. 

I do believe that remote working is here to stay. Or at least hybrid working. It has worked so well during the pandemic, why not now? I understand the people who would wanna go back to the office. We all work differently, have different work ethic and technique. It’s totally normal. However, I’m struggling to find enough reasons that would push people to go back to an office full time when remote working has proven to be totally efficient.

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