Looking for a way to get your family out of the house and enjoying some summer fun in the sun? Look no further. Adventures on the Gorge is the perfect destination for both work and play. With wifi available in all cabins, restaurants and locations at the Resort, you will be able to work poolside, from the quiet of your cabin, on the deck over-looking the New River Gorge Bridge or anywhere in between.
For your first workcation, keep your sense of practicality at the forefront. You don’t have to sacrifice the feeling of remoteness, but trying to get service with your phone tethered from a boat in a tropical storm isn’t the way to go—at least for your first time out.
Instead, opt for a more predictable travel situation, like a long weekend in a cabin with Wifi, or spending a work week in the mountains (with lots of activities, Wifi and adventure).
A Few Tips to Keep You Calm
1. Make a Daily Schedule and stick to it.
Not having a schedule can set you up for failure. Staying organized will help minimize your stress and help your colleagues and clients receive the same level of quality work you normally deliver.
2. Create a family routine as well.
Here’s the thing about working remotely with a family. You’re working and on vacation at the same time. Your family, however, is on vacation. So, while they definitely respect that you’re working, they’re also expecting to do vacation things.
Without setting expectations on when you can do things with the family, you’re setting yourself up for a bad time. Let them know when you’re free to do activities with them. Of course, many activities require a full day and not just a few hours here and there. Be diligent about this when building your schedule.
3. Communicate twice as much as you used to.
The best part about getting away is that you’re away from everyone else. You feel like you can be more productive because you’re not dealing with everyone else’s stressors. The hard part about getting away is that your clients and colleagues think you’re out having fun and think you’re not working. This stresses them out, which then turns out stressing you out. The same goes for your family. Over-communicate what your plans are and when you’re going to be doing fun things and times where you’ll be working.
4. Find a location that has activities that can be done without you (if needed).
Working remotely while on vacation can either sound like heaven to you or a miserable time. Finding a location with activities that start at different times through out the day as well as last different durations can allow you to pick and choose the entire family can enjoy.
Be Prepared for Work
If you have a remote job, chances are you already never leave home without your laptop, charger, cellphone and headphones. But when you pack for a workcation, you should prepare for the worst.
Bring a hard drive: Especially if you’re working with media, storing big files on a hard drive protects you in case you need to work without an Internet signal, or you can’t access files in the cloud.
Bring extra headphones: Since you need headphones to clock in to meetings on Skype or Google Hangout, make sure to have a backup pair just in case you drop yours in the hot tub.
Figure out your tethering situation: Make sure you can login and work from anywhere, even without a Wifi signal. Set up Bluetooth so you can tether to your phone, update your mobile data plan for travel, and consider investing in a data storage device like Karma.
Chargers: It’s an obvious one, but make sure you have a charger and/or connecting cable for your laptop, phone and hard drive. You absolutely can never have enough chargers.
Converters: If you’re traveling abroad, keep in mind that your gadgets may not be compatible with foreign outlets. Do your research—it can change country to country!
Clean your laptop: To minimize the risk of total tech meltdown, clean files off your laptop and sort out your cloud storage in advance.
Figure out your tech setup: Will you be calling in to meetings from your phone? Test it! Will you tether to your phone while traveling in a bus? Try that out in advance. Will you bring a tablet and a portable keyboard? Make sure your setup works before you find yourself far from home.
Make A Schedule Ahead of Time
Look at your work calendar, then make sure your travel plans don’t interfere. If they do, move meetings and deadlines in advance, and definitely not once you’re sitting on a beach somewhere. Coworkers are usually flexible, but only if you give them warning.
It’s also a great idea to check in with the people you’re traveling with to set expectations about when you’ll be available to hangout, and when you’ll need down time to get work done. While you’re at it, take some time to send an email to your teammates or clients letting them know what time zone you’ll be in, and when you expect to be available. Also let them know how they can reach you when you’re not online.
Don't Forget to Have Freetime
Balance. If finding work-life balance is tough on a normal day, it can be even trickier on a workcation. And finding the time to commit to work without destroying your vacation (and making everyone you’re traveling with hate you!) is probably what you’re most worried about. To be smart and savvy about balancing your work obligations and leisure time, try:
Work during “off” hours depending on the time zone. Instead of turning down that hiking journey in the woods, spend the day on the mountain and spend the evening getting work done.
Do rote tasks while you’re distracted. If you’re lounging at the pool with family, take that time to do rote tasks that don’t take much of your brain power.
Do tasks that require focus alone. If you need to be totally “there” for a certain task (like writing a blog post or attending a meeting), make sure you schedule alone time to get that work done.
Set limits. Don’t be afraid to say, “I need 1 hour to do this thing.” It’s okay to shut yourself up in the cabin/room for 2 hours if it means you can spend 3 enjoying dinner and drinks later.
Take some days totally off. Schedule a few days with no work at all, even if it means you have to put in extra hours before or after your trip. After all this double-dealing, you’ll need (and you’ll have EARNED!) some time off. Taking some time to rejuvenate will mean you’re fresh and on point when you do clock in.