Share Tweet Share Interview With Remote Business Owners Hannah & Chris From Love Play Work Welcome to the twentieth of the weekly interview series where I will speak a wide range of people who have embraced the working remotely opportunity. We will speak to entrepreneurs, business owners, large organisation workers and freelancers about their trials and tribulations when delving into remote working. This week I am delighted to interview not one person but two 🙂 I had the pleasure of speaking with business owners and world roamers Hannah & Chris of Love Play Work. If you are not familiar with their FANTASTIC website then you need to become familiar with it as it’s a fantastic resource. Love Play Work brings together a location independent lifestyle, a lust for travel and a passion for business under one amazing domain. Not only do Hannah & Chris manage to run a remote HR consultancy business but they also own two eCommerce websites & maintain the blog on a weekly basis. I would DARE someone to step forward and call these two lazy remote workers (we’ve heard all this before). What I love about this interview is how passionate they both are to succeed in business while seeing the world at the same time. I think this interview proves that anything is possible and I hope it inspires more people to be as inspirational as Hannah & Chris. Quite frankly this is a BRILLIANT read. Make sure you follow the pair on twitter here. Q: Hi Hannah & Chris tell us a little bit about yourself, where are you from, where do you live now? We are from the UK. We are currently travelling round the world for 9 months. Running our business remotely as we go Q: What company do you work for and what is your role within the organisation? We work for ourselves. We have a UK based HR consultancy business, 2 e-commerce sites and a travel and business blog which includes a mentoring program for people who want to learn how to run a business while they travel. Q: How do you deal with stereotypes from friends in regards to productivity when working from home? i.e.: Sleep until midday, 2 hour lunch breaks etc. I think most of our friends know we work pretty hard, although we also post a lot of gorgeous pictures to Facebook which sometimes gives the impression there is more play than work! Q: What is the most challenging part about remote working and how do you overcome this? We’ve been doing this for 5 years so we have figured out ways round a lot of the challenges. We have a great team of virtual assistants who help us keep on top of things when the time zones make it difficult to stay in touch with clients. Today we are dealing with internet problems- we have backups and work arounds but in a country like New Zealand you don’t necessarily expect there to be so many issues. Q: What are the main positives in having a remote working arrangement full time? We set up our online businesses so we could travel, and adapted our consultancy business to fit with that too. The flexibility to go where we like when we like is the best part. In an average week we can have more diverse and new experiences than we would at home in 6 months! Take this week for example- we’ve been busy with work but we have still spent a morning sat in a hot pool which we dug ourselves on the seashore where volcanic water seeps through the sand; we’ve hiked in a gorge, got lost in a cave and turned off the torch to find a roof lit up with glow worms; we’ve found a super cheap sushi place just down the round from where we are staying….it’s just nice that it’s all so varied. Q: Are you an advocate of work/life balance and how do you try and balance both? Who isn’t It is a challenge, sometimes work takes over and it’s hard not to feel like we are missing out on doing fun stuff. But we need to pay for the fun stuff! Plus we enjoy our work so it’s not really a problem- we are happy to get back to it after a few days away from our laptops as we know what needs doing and are motivated to get it done. Q: What’s a typical day for you both? Realistically….start to finish. It depends. If it’s a fun day, who knows, we just head out and explore. If it’s a work day we get up around 8 and the laptops go straight on. We stop to eat but generally keep going until 7pm when we head out to get some fresh air and exercise. We don’t do that well mixing the days i.e. if we start work in the morning with the plan to finish up early to go out and do something in the afternoon it invariably doesn’t end up happening! So we are better off keeping the days more separate. Q: Do you have a dedicated office space and what is the importance of having this? Wherever is comfortable and the wifi is the best. I’m writing this in bed, even though it’s nearly lunch time this is where the signal is strongest. Q: Any pictures of your office space? Just your typical ‘average’ office hey? Q: How important do you feel family support is for remote workers? As a couple we support each other a lot. When we are travelling we don’t see our wider families. Most people don’t fully get what we do so it’s great that we work together and understand the demands. Q: Do you have any productivity tools you use to keep yourself efficient which may help our readers? No, I’m probably not very efficient! If I turn off email it helps! I get easily distracted. Not having good internet helps limit random online browsing. Being 13 hours ahead of the UK and a load more ahead of the US limits email distractions during the day. Q: You have a mentor session of becoming location independent. As two well respected, knowledgeable remote workers what is the best advice you could give anybody considering taking a plunge with this type of arrangement? It’s easy to think you would like to do it one day but it seems too huge to even start. But unless you start it will never happen. You don’t need all the answers straight away and you will always be learning but commit to doing something so you have a chance of achieving your dreams. We have a new program we’ve set up to help people get started as it can often seem a bit overwhelming. It will be at www.loveplaywork.com/180days shortly Q: Do you believe more organisations should allow those with web based roles to work remotely? If so..How come? Of course, it makes sense. There is a lot of research evidence to prove that remote workers are very motivated and productive- they don’t need a boss looking over their shoulder to be conscientious. Most people take pride in what they are delivering and are more aware of not wanting seem to be slacking than if they were in the office! If they aren’t motivated to do the work they are in the wrong job, irrespective of where their laptop is set up.