Interview with an Independent Consultant on Remote Work

Remote Work Stories
19 November, 2021
Raul Rovira

Hi, Can you please introduce yourself?

My name is Raul. I am a remote worker based out of Anchorage, Alaska.

What’s your profession, what do you do?

Consultant: Project Manager, Project Consultant, Lean Six Sigma, Logistics

What company do you work for? Are you a freelancer or Digital Nomad?

My company is called Rovira Business Services. I am partnered with Workplaceless and Cantilever. I would define myself as an Independent Consultant and Remote Worker.

How did you start with a remote work journey?

After retiring from the military in 2016, my first job lasted 9 months. The 8 to 5 and commute were not a fit for me. I establish my single member LLC. My first gigs were providing destination services as a relocation consultant in Anchorage Alaska. At one point I had 4 relocation companies asking me to take care of their employees.

2019 I call it "The Year of Remote Work". Between the Alaska recession and the lack of good jobs, I decided to shift my focus to remote companies. I attended every remote conference or remote networking event I could get my hands on. At the 2019 Remote Work Summit I came to know Tammy and Brian from Workplaceless. Through networking at Networkplaceless I met Ty the founder from Cantilever.

2019 ended when I completed both the Workplaceless Remote Work Certification and the Trainplaceless certification as a Remote Trainer.

Find a remote job today and work remotely

What do you think are the main benefits of working remotely?

🚗Commuting in the Alaska winter can be stressful and sometimes dangerous. I'm glad I don't have to fight traffic to and from work. With less commute I get better sleep😴. At least one extra hour. During days of back pain or severe headaches, I can take a short break and then get back to work. During the old office days there was nowhere to take breaks. If I'm in the middle of projects or work, I can still travel✈ and visit family.

Do you think there are disadvantages or that you’re missing something by working remotely?

You don't get the coffee conversations around the office. Burnout, if you dont watch it it can sneak up on you. It did to me a few times.

From what cities or countries have you worked since you have become remote? What are your favourite countries or cities to work from?

I live in Anchorage, Alaska. I have work remotely from Seattle WA, Phoenix AZ, Calgary Canada, Washington DC, and Sarospatak Hungary.  One of my favorite cities from when I was in the military is Lucca, Italy.

From what type of places do you prefer to work? Home, co-working spaces, coffee shops, or others?

I prefer to work from home because of my monitors, coffee maker and quietness. It is ideal for web conference meetings. With COVID, I dont visit coffee bars. Back then I like spending a few hours working downtown to change the scenery and to network or reconnect with other professionals.

What places would you like to travel to while working remotely?

🌍 In the travel bucket list I have: Iceland, Argentina, Norway, Finland, Denmark, France, Estonia, Spain, and Hawaii.

What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them? Share your remote productivity, communication, management, etc. tips based on your experience!

  • 📅 Calendar Management. Schedule your meals and workout time. It is ok to move things a bit but never sacrifice them.  
  • 📲 Clock out and disconnect from work when work is complete.  
  • 🔕🔇 Turn off all phone and computer notifications. 🎶I have special ring tones for my wife and kids so I know it is them.

What tools do you use to improve productivity and manage work efficiently?

Google Calendar, Evernote are my daily apps. Paymo, Basecamp, Trello, Asana, Mural. It depends who I'm working with and the type of project.

How do you manage your business and taxes as a remote working professional?

I use Quickbooks for small business. I do all my book keeping. All my business transactions are automatically added to the ledger.

What advice would you give to people looking to work remotely?

Personal and Professional branding as a remote worker. LinkedIn is a good place to brand yourself professionally and Instagram for your personal activities.

Networking at remote conference or remote chats in social media. They can open doors. Best is connecting with other remote workers and learning from them, sharing stories and photos.

Do you work on any side projects?

Yes - Logistics support for the COVID-19 response in Anchorage, Alaska.

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