Welcome to the first edition of How She Does It, where I interview my real life friends who work remotely. Each female has a different story of how she got her job, how she lives her remote lifestyle, and what advice she wants to give other girls. For How She Does It #1, I interviewed the multi-talented Brooke Tomasetti.
Quick story about how Brooke became my friend in such a small world!
Brooke and I first met virtually, on the Digital Nomad Girls Facebook group. This group had about 5,000 members at the time. She made a post about advice for traveling in Central America, wanting to choose a nice warm place to get out of the cold back at home (Connecticut, USA). I commented that I am also from Connecticut and home at the moment. When we started messaging back and forth we realized that we live in the same little beach town of Old Saybrook. But it gets even better; we decided to meet up for a work date at a cafe in town. Brooke asked where I live and we realized we live on the exact same street! The first day that we worked together, we gabbed about tea, running, relationships, and life choices. We’ve been friends ever since that day and I’m so proud to bring you her advice on remote work.
Brooke Tomasetti, 23
Associate Inbound Marketing Consultant at Smart Bug Media
What is it like working for an agency?
The best part about working at an agency is that every day is different. Typically, you have 4 to 6 clients at a time in different industries, and it’s both exciting and challenging to learn about each company inside and out.
What might some agency perks be for someone first jumping into remote work?
I think an agency job is ideal for someone who doesn’t want worry about where their next paycheck is coming from while traveling, and wants to feel part of a team. Yes, you have less say over your hours and the amount of work you’re doing each week, but you’re able to save and travel since you have a reliable paycheck coming in.
Personally, I love working at an agency because I have twenty plus other intelligent, fun people to learn from and collaborate with every day.
How did you find your freelance gig with Ugly Juice? What is it like having a bit of a view into the startup world?
When I was freelancing, a previous coworker of mine reached out with the opportunity to do marketing work for Ugly Juice. It was perfect timing, so I said yes and he put me in touch! Networking and keeping in contact with the people you have worked with at previous jobs is key.
I started at Ugly Juice just a few weeks after they launched, so I was essentially the only person doing marketing work for them, including social media, marketing strategy, email marketing, and more! Because it was an early startup, the company’s goals and products were always being tweaked and updated. The ability to prioritize, adapt the strategy, and throw a bunch of things at the wall to see what sticks is how I would describe marketing in the startup world.
What are your favorite work environments? What are some non negotiables for your work space?
As much as I love to travel, nothing beats my office at home. I have my adjustable standing desk, lots of sunlight, and a reading nook for when I want to take a break and make some tea.
I would say that a standing desk in non negotiable for my work space because I’m obsessed with it, but that isn’t always realistic.
How do you keep yourself accountable and productive when you don’t have to work in an office?
I’ve slowly developed a morning routine that works for me, and sort of sets the pace for the rest of my day. It involves waking up at 6am and taking an hour to myself to meditate, read, write, and eat a healthy breakfast. Having that hour helps me get in the right state of mind for a productive day.
It might sound counterintuitive, but one thing that also helps is taking breaks. For example, most days I’ll work for a couple hours and then go for my run. It really helps split up my day and stay focused.
I’m disciplined myself, but if there’s ever anything I can improve on I have my coworkers to inform me and help hold me accountable, which is super helpful.
Advice time! What do you want other girls your age to know about their career choice?
Don’t feel like you have to do anything crazy to be able to work remote and travel! More often than not, you can do the job you’re currently doing but from home. And if not, don’t pressure yourself to immediately quit your job and change careers—Start by doing a little bit on the side, improve your skills, talk to others who are doing what you want to do, and just get 1% better every single day.
Brooke just recently went on her first solo trip as a full-time remote worker. She lived in Paraguay for a month to practice Spanish and visit a friend who lives there! She is looking forward to planning more adventures.
Want to read more inspiring stories just like this one? Check out previous editions of How She Does It here!