Digital nomads create a win-win in quest for work-life balance

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 10 June, 2017, 9:01am
UPDATED : Saturday, 10 June, 2017, 9:43pm

With the digital revolution has come the questioning of the traditional 9-5 day as more employees seek greater work-life balance.

As CEO of an industry-focused, co-working space in Hong Kong, I have seen companies scrambling to cater for a millennial workforce that demands work should not dictate and dominate their lives. The lines have blurred with work-life integration becoming the status quo, as opposed to the balance, or lack of, that was possible before emails and chat programs were always within arm’s reach on our mobile devices.

The 4-Hour Workweek”, published by New York Times best-selling author Tim Ferriss in 2007, taught people to “escape the 9-5, live anywhere, and join the new rich”. It resonated with audiences – the idea of lifestyle design 10 years ago pushed the digital nomad into the spotlight. Remote working appeals to millennials who prize experiences over material goods. In this generation, being a digital nomad gained traction – moving from pipe dream gimmick to an inevitable norm.

Along with the growing gig economy, many are taking greater ownership to make the best of both worlds – to strike out and live as digital nomads. The remote workforce population had passed 1.3 billion since 2016. It’s proven that companies which embrace the wanderlust that seems prevalent with millennials drive up engagement, and imbue a sense of loyalty that can generate much higher returns.

The ease of access to affordable and quality lodgings online through sites such as Airbnb, better internet connections and companies realising that giving workers freedom and autonomy brings out the best in them, point to the allure of the digital nomad.

Digital nomads are part of a global connected family – understanding their physical landscape and the burgeoning digital nomadic community will make their travels much more enjoyable and productive.

Having access to a good coworking space that serves as a hub is crucial for the digital nomad. With a mix of businesses across various industries , digital nomads will be able to scour their favourite destinations without missing a beat in their workflow, while widening their networks with like-minded individuals.

For the digital nomad, the coworking space serves as his office and workspace he can call his own.

Wang Tse, co-founder and CEO, Campfire Collaborative Spaces