The Work We Do: Balancing Work, Life and World Travel
In our The Work We Do series, we’re sharing more about how our marketing consultants problem-solve with clients while finding balance in their own lives. Today, we’re telling Zac’s story. He’s reaping the benefits of the new world of work by traveling internationally while providing high-level marketing expertise to clients, no matter where they are.
Work-life balance means something a little different when it includes juggling world travel with serving clients. But Antenna consultant Zac is able to do just that, combining his lifetime love of travel with a vibrant marketing career. As long as he can get online, he’s able to provide top-notch service to clients, no matter where he is.
Zac currently runs paid search campaigns for an Antenna client, a 24-hour online clinic that provides online diagnosis and treatment plans for common ailments. He helps the company find new customers who are in the market for a doctor. “Beyond the basic keyword management, there is a good amount of time spent coming up with ideas on how to reach an audience when the company launches their service in a new market or starts treatment for an ailment,” he says.
Zac has been traveling all his life, inspired by his father, who often worked overseas. “He lived in Saudi Arabia, India and Indonesia, and I remember seeing his passport filled with stamps and extra pages, and calling him long distance while looking at a map and dreaming of going,” he says. His father would save up airline points and take the kids on trips to Barbados, Bermuda and Curacao for vacations.
As adults, Zac and his wife, Jill, decided to go on a long trek every two years to places like Machu Picchu and Nepal. That schedule turned into every year, until they sold their house and belongings last July and have been traveling ever since. Zac is currently on an adventure that will hit a wide variety of locales, including Thailand, New Zealand, Croatia, Hong Kong and England. “We just spent two months going from Northern Thailand to Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia. I think between August and December 2015 we hit 10 countries.”
Zac says he avoids scheduling meetings on travel days, because travel itself is stressful enough; he simply tells clients the days he’s unavailable. “I just work wherever I am,” he says, fitting in flexible work without having to take vacation time to travel.
“There are great advantages for people who can work this way,” Zac says. “You can literally go anywhere there is a decent internet connection and be productive. It's the definition of work/life balance.” He says employers find some comfort knowing that remote contractors are totally dedicated to making that lifestyle succeed, so they work harder to prove that it can and does benefit everyone.
“I'm way more focused on getting a project or task done when I know there is a beach or a mountain waiting for me,” he says.
Back home, Antenna makes it easy for Zac by picking up the client management oversight and support, and all the back-end administrative details like contract negotiation and billing. This type of partnership allows Zac to devote all of his work time to solving clients’ problems, no matter where he is. In addition, Antenna serves as a local face for clients who need a little more hands-on attention when Zac is out of the country.
The Future of Work
It’s no secret that the way people work — and how they understand work — is changing. A recent PwC report looks at some of the emerging possibilities about how we work, including a greater emphasis on flexibility, collaboration and freelance work. Technological advances have already made it easy, with a little planning, to deliver for clients from around the world, like Zac does. As tech continues to evolve and more clients see the potential of collaborating with problem-solvers on a project basis, Antenna expects to connect even more smart marketers with clients (no matter where they work) in the coming years.
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Founded in 2006, Antenna is a leader in bringing top marketing professionals to corporations and non-profits for project-based consulting, interim leadership, staff augmentation, and direct placement needs. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Antenna draws from its private community of experienced marketers to provide clients with on-demand resources – both individuals and teams. Our vision is to fundamentally change the way marketing teams get work done by helping clients balance the flexibility and expertise required by today’s modern marketing organization.