How and why did you start working remotely? 
My first remote role happened by chance, like most of the people in the space right now. When the pandemic hit, we were all forced to work from home. At first, I was quite skeptical about the productivity of myself and the team but everyone proved to be even more hardworking when they didn’t need to worry about a commute. 
When it came time for me to get a new role, one of my major considerations was remote working – I couldn’t imagine having to return to the office again. Those days were behind me.
 What are the biggest benefits of working remotely? 
For me, it does not have to commute to an office. Working my own hours, from wherever I feel like. Sometimes that’s my home office in my apartment or a coffee shop and occasionally, a hotel balcony by the beach. 
Choosing my own working hours is also a major benefit. For me, I take a 3-hour break every day in the middle of my day. This allows me to work much later after I am back from my break, hence having more screen time with my colleagues in the Western time zones.
, Remote Work Cafe – With Saruni Maina
What are the greatest challenges to working remotely? 
See how in an office you could walk up to someone and get instant feedback, clarity, or an answer to something? Yeah, now forget about that with remote working. Especially if you’re working with a team that’s 6 to 8 hours at a different timezone. This lack of instant access can slow things down.
Remote work requires a lot of discipline. Not necessarily discipline to get things done without someone looking over your shoulder but the discipline to know when to close your laptop and sign-off work. With remote work, the lines between work and life and very blurry, and you could easily find yourself hitting 14+ hours of work per day.
 What apps or websites can’t you work remotely without? 
Slack and Google calendar. Prior to 2020, I didn’t use any of them at all! But now, Google calendar is the first thing I check when I sit at my desk. Slack on the other hand has become the major communication platform for me and my colleagues.
What’s the best way to find a remote job? 
 Honestly, it’s just to look. LinkedIn is a good place to get to know which companies hire remotely, but visiting these companies’ individual websites and checking out which roles are eligible for remote work is a better way to find jobs.
There are also platforms like ToffeeTribe that make it easier to find such jobs.

, Remote Work Cafe – With Saruni Maina

 What does your remote company do? 
I work at Chipper Cash. We’re a VC-funded fintech startup whose mission is to unlock global financial opportunities for Africans. We have a multi-currency mobile wallet app that has features such as remittance, investments in stocks and crypto, virtual cards, and many more to come.
We also offer businesses products to power their growth. Such as accepting and disbursing payments through our API.
How do you stay physically active while working remotely?
I exercise every day at home – got myself a few home workout instruments and also use the stairs every chance I get… Taking walks to the shops is a great way to keep fit as well.
 How does one foster growth in their career while working remotely?
Just like with working in an office, we push up the career ladder by putting in the work – finish your tasks, take up new ones, challenge yourself with new responsibilities, and ask to be involved in projects you have an interest in. 
Your individual output and taking advantage of opportunities that present themselves are a good start to ensure that your career keeps growing even if you never set foot in an office.

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