Sarup Banskota

How did you get your first remote job?

I’ve actually never done a non-remote gig. While I was at Uni until 2 years ago, I was a full-time open source contributor, thanks to medical leave (sorry you had to find out this way, class teacher).

I would write open source code, speak/teach at conferences, and do workshops. My first client materialised through one of these events – they found my talk relevant to their business and got me onboard to help.

Do you have any rituals or habits which help you to work remotely?

Not a ritual but roughly 3 days a week I work out of Starbucks to avoid sleeping at home in the afternoons.

What is the biggest benefit of working remotely?

If you’re like me and own a difficult passport, you can do your visa appointments on a Wednesday afternoon when it’s least crowded. And once your visa is through, fly on a Wednesday afternoon when it’s least expensive.

Do you see any cons of working remotely and how do you try to overcome it?

I run a tech biz based in Singapore. It’s fairly easy to find programmers, receive tech advice, or admin information online – at least for Singapore.

However, I struggle with maintaining an intimate business relationship with business folks over Skype, as they appear more comfortable in a traditional office / Starbucks setting.

Working from my home office also means I have the privilege of renting a large resort-style apartment far from the city centre as opposed to the shoe boxes in the Central Business District for the same fee. The downside is that it’s inconvenient to meet my bigger clients who’re based in the CBD unless I lonely-taxi 40 minutes both ways.

To overcome this, I share my apartment with business folks who work in the CBD – this way there’s some activity in the house when they’re back; and once in a while, I tag along with them to the city centre to see well-groomed humans in suits.

You have a newsletter for helping your college grads lead a similar lifestyle to yours. Any tips/insights that you’d like to share with our community in that regard?

Yes!

10 years ago, it was nearly impossible to make a living online, by yourself, with just your passion as the fuel that drives your income.

Now it finally is possible, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing for 7 years straight. I started out as a broke kid begging my friends to invite me to 80c canteen dinners, and finally after years or learning things the hard way, I can choose to work from literally anywhere in the world.

 

Over time I’ve gotten a fair share of questions around upgrading careers, so I decided to basically brain dump 8 of my most impactful non-technical learnings in the form of a private newsletter for my University juniors.

Following its crazy success, I’m soon opening up the second edition for the public! The waitlist is now open for a short amount of time, so sign up now ➡ https://sarupbanskota.com/levelup !

 

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