The Remote Work Experience
Mexico City Continued
By John Williams, November 15, 2018
In our new series, Work & Roam, we’ll be following our Product and Solutions Analyst John Williams as he travels the world, working remotely from 5 countries.
Tune in to see what worked (and what didn’t) for John during each stop, and to dig into how working remotely affects both the worker and the team back home.
Final Week In Mexico: Mexico City —
Roma Norte Neighborhood
Timezone: Central Time
Take Aways from Mexico City:
The time difference between Mexico City and New York is minimal, which makes communication really easy. But on the other hand, NOTHING is open before 9 a.m.! This includes co-working spaces and coffee shops, so if you have a call or a meeting before 9:00 a.m., it’ll have to be done where you’re staying. This makes a decent home Wi-Fi signal even more important. I now know to send a message to all of my prospective Airbnb hosts before I book to double check.
Mexico City really is wonderful and I can’t recommend it enough. Recently, the depiction of Mexico in the United States has been pretty warped, as if its some violent and dirty place. It is every bit as clean and safe as New York, Paris, or really any major metropolitan city.
I am noticeably more healthy here than I am in NYC. I don’t have as many distractions and don’t know too many people here, so I can finish my work and go for a walk or read for a while in the afternoon. I also have been exercising and going to bed early. The fresh food helps, too!
If I were to do one thing differently it would be to move around less. In the past month, I have stayed in 6 different apartments and hostels. It was nice to see different parts of the city, but I the added stress of moving and planning was worth it.
The real challenges will start next week. I fly to Lisbon, Portugal, and will be working 5 hours ahead of my team in New York.
“One of the dozens of ornate skeletons set up to celebrate Dia de los Muertos — My work week was short because of the 3 day celebration of Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), a Mexican holiday honoring friends and family members who have passed away.”
Roles and Responsibilities: 8/10
I still don’t think remote work has affected this as my responsibilities have not really changed.
I have dropped this score a little bit, but it is still not a major factor in my experience. It’s not that collaboration has been any more difficult than it is working in the office, it just has to be planned. In the office, If I have an idea I can quickly have a conversation with a co-worker right next to me. But, while remote, I have to wait for a next meeting or reach out to a co-worker on Slack. Slack is certainly helpful, but personally I am less likely to express my thoughts if I have to take the time to type them out in a message to someone.
Career Growth: ?/10
This is still the most difficult driver to measure, because I think a lot of it has to do with how I am perceived by others in the company. Am I less visible and more likely to miss opportunities for more responsibilities and growth? This is not something I worry about on a daily basis, but it pops into my head from time to time.
I actually increased my score for this driver up from my previous blog post. Since I am traveling alone I have the time to fully focus on my projects and have very little distraction. This surge in my personal productivity has been one of the greatest perks of working remotely.
This is very similar to my Collaboration score. Being abroad does not make transparency impossible, it simply puts the burden on your shoulders instead of it happening passively.
I will be in Lisbon, Portugal for my next blog post.
Tune in again to see how that change goes. Until next time,