Remote Work Interview with Matt Rowels

Remote Work Stories
15 March, 2022
Matt Rowels

Hi, Can you please introduce yourself?

G'day, I'm Matt from Wollongong, Australia. I work remotely on a product that actually empowers teams around the world to work in a remote/hybrid fashion as best as possible. I've been doing this for about 6 months now and loving every minute of it.

What’s your profession, what do you do?

I'm a Software Engineer

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

Remote Social

How did you start with a remote work journey?

I moved back from Sydney to my hometown Wollongong a few years ago to be closer to family and struggled with the 3-hour daily commute to my Sydney based job (this was pre-covid where we were expected in the office 80-100% of the week still). I finally got the opportunity to work from home with Remote Social and also empower other teams to be able to do the same with ease.

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

In a weird sense, I feel like I'm finally considered a responsible adult! My team trusts that I'm invested in the company's success so there are no issues like having to show face because we let our work do the talking. I think ultimately the flexibility that comes along with it lets me do chores, attend appointments and so on whilst still smashing through a backlog of work, guilt-free (it helps when your company's leadership is awesome).

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

Zoom meetings are fine for rituals i.e., standups, retrospectives, check-ins etc. but I feel like Zoom meetings for large important team meetings, i.e., epic kickoffs, quarterly reviews etc. can fall short. I think these types of meetings are generally more successful when there is a certain amount of energy, camaraderie, physical presence, shared food and so on. This is something we are actively working on at Remote Social.

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

Wollongong, Sydney

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

If I'm alone, anywhere. If I am with team members, co-working spaces.

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


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

I feel a bit disconnected from the world sometimes. Sure, we have news feeds and social apps galore, and I find myself retracting socially more as I get older, but I still

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

Integrated Chat Platforms (Slack, Teams, Discord), Video Chats (Zoom, Meets), Collaborative Design tools (Sketch, Figma), Collaborative Development Software (Webstorm Code With Me, VS Code Live Share)

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

Same as before, maybe a few more claimables since I'm working from home 100% of the time now

Matt's Website:

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