Something old, something new, something digital, something nomad
One could judge by the title that a member of Femspace got married and started a new life (after all it is a female community, it could happen 😃). Although the notion of a wedding is misleading this time, the speakers of the event „Digital Freedom Vienna” have turned over a new leaf lately indeed.
Written by Viki Tanczer, Photo credit: Nóra Varga
Five young ladies reinterpreted what work, career, success, independency or freedom meant for them and by creating a new perspective and a new system of work and life they freelance now as digital nomads.
We have already written about the participantsof the panel discussion and also about the amazingly creative host of thisevent Hotel Schani, which moulds old and new into an even newer shape by hiding the latest technology behind a very Viennese name.
With this background information in our pocket we could listen to these ladies and learn what they think about freedom and how they are present on the global labour market as digital nomads.
What does “freedom” mean to them?
Of course, not a 2-to-3 week long summer holiday, or being a carefree tourist travelling around the world with a backpack. Actually, “not-working” or earning money easily were not mentioned at all, much more the opposite. We heard a lot more about long working hours or working at weekends considering different time zones to satisfy clients or keeping deadlines set by customers or by themselves.
At that point, the theory, that if you don’t work at an office, you never get stressed or tired, gets dismissed. Even this life and working style can be exhausting, as if you are your own boss and employee as well, plus your own existence is at stake. Thus, you are willing to take even more pressure on yourself.
However, by using technology, these ladies have the opportunity to take on this pressure at that longitude and latitude wherever they want to, with their own time schedule and in an environment that is convenient for them.
As they are independent from companies and they are their own bosses, they can experiment freely to create the best puzzle out of the puzzle pieces work, money, time, clients, daily routine, deadlines, free time, hobby, family, children, household, travelling, workplace, home etc. Harmonizing these areas and taking care of each part of life takes a lot of energy of course. What’s more, the pieces of this puzzle have to be taken apart and put together again if priorities change.
Which skills are necessary for this lifestyle?
If you have a lot of time at your disposal, sooner or later you have to schedule it otherwise you will waste it. You have to know yourself when you are productive, how long it takes to carry out different tasks, how long you can work effectively, when you need a break. You have to create a daily schedule and introducing daily/weekly/monthly even annual routines may be necessary. An important skill is being able to focus on problems and their solutions and not to waste precious time, which can be spent more pleasantly than work. Technical and business knowledge are important as well, just like being able to prioritize and systematize processes or being stress-resistent.
On top, it is necessary to have an open eye looking for new inspirations, for possible problems solutions in your environment, and actually for new business opportunities. And sometimes (or quite often) a lot of courage is needed to push the experimenting spirit to the front line and start something completely new. You have to get used to the fact too, that as an independent freelancer you do not have a regular income and the green numbers only appear rapsodically on your bank account. You have to plan and calculate accordingly, keeping the final goal in mind, which is a sustainable business strategy and lifestyle.
7+1 takeaways from the event
Listening to the ladies we have learnt how these things have worked out in their lives and on their career paths. What did they learn and what are the next goals they aim at. Tipically, these goals are not put on a traditional ’work-success-money’ axis. It is more important that in addition to creating the material and financial frames of their businesses they want to create and convey value as well.
During the event the careful listener could collect several takeaways. Though not word by word but we quote some of them here:
„Pushing, pushing, pushing work and business always at 100% on the long run - that just does not work for everyone. „(Estela)
„It is important to leave our comfort zone behind and travel alone. Even if we are afraid of that.” (Christina)
„A (business) plan is always a good starting point. But it is also important to have an open eye looking for new opportunities .” (Betti)
„You have to be solution-oriented and try not to freak out each time when someting goes wrong.” (Iris)
„Creating value does not have to be stressful.” (Estela)
„The more you collect, the more lazy you get.” (Becki)
„Let’s be realistic. Working under palm trees with mojitos in hand is a false picture. You cannot work anyway if you get drunk.” (Iris)
In the end for the question „Why Vienna?”
„The question is rather: ’Why not Vienna?’. Vienna is a very healthy city and not a 24h-place. Here you can stop, breathe, disconnect, sleep.” (Iris)
It seems that we have landed at the right location. Vienna is a great point to start, even if we plan a career leap or an internal journey. Now, we only have to put the right pieces of the puzzle onto the table and the play can start.
Thank you, dear Becki, Betti, Christina, Estela, Iris and Orsi!
Click here to read the post about the event written by Orsolya Gyulai