Outsite Member Kaja Rangus dips into life in Santa Cruz as a University professor in entrepreneurship, and how she makes working from home productive.
Kaja has always been remote, at least for the past 7 years. Nowadays, co-living spaces are making it easier for her to pursue hobbies, stay in places off-the-beaten track and feel like a true local when she travels.
Outsite: Tell us a bit about yourself.
Kaja: I come from Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia (Born, raised and still reside here to this day). I’m an assistant professor in the Faculty of Economics, at the University of Ljubljana where I teach and research on innovation management and entrepreneurship. On days when I don’t have lectures (or meetings) I work from home or search for some quiet places outside, as I find the office environment pretty demotivating. When possible I organize meetings outside, to make them more informal, relaxed and consequently more creative. I love unusual and exceptional working spots, which spur creativity and fun. I’m passionate about all sports related to boarding, i.e. wakeboarding, kiteboarding, snowboarding, longboarding,… therefore I spend most of my free time and vacations on the water. I always search for sports in which I find myself fully immersive - besides the aforementioned sports, I frequently do aerial yoga, body balance and running.
How long have you been nomadic and what inspired this lifestyle change?
I wouldn’t say that I’ve ever been nomadic… for the past 7 years, I've always tried to connect my work with the activities I like. Besides teaching, half of my work relates to research, which includes quite a lot of business travel (collecting research data or visiting different conferences and workshops). Therefore, whenever on a business trip I search for places with options for wakeboarding, running, or yoga. On the other hand, I always try to work when I’m on vacations. I prefer places where I can work in the morning and kiteboard/wakeboard in the afternoon or in-between. While working from home, I often take the morning off for running, which gives me additional energy and inspiration for new ideas. In this way, I actively spend the time, which would in normal working conditions probably end up unproductive.
What has been the most challenging part so far?
Back in the past when there was no Airbnb (or Outsite) it was really hard to get an apartment or a hotel room with a good Wifi connection, or on the other side, these hotels offered really expensive complementary wifi. Besides, working at a “normal desk” in a hotel room was never fun for me. Outsite? This is different. It's new, it's inspiring.
Any crazy/fun stories you'd like to share?
Nothing too crazy... On my first day in Santa Cruz I was cruising around with a bike and two surfers (from the Bay area, I guess) asked me for directions to the beach…it felt kinda cool that people thought I was a local.
How does Outsite fit into your current lifestyle?
It’s perfect. It provides everything I need for my escape from regular work. Fancy, fully equipped houses around the world (that you can only dream of), excellent conditions for diverse sport activities, several different uncommon and unique working spaces, and like-minded individuals all with interesting backgrounds whom you can fall into deep conversation, do sport activities or just hang around.
Any advice for 9-to-5 workers looking to make the leap to nomadism?
It doesn’t really have to be nomadism in its fullest meaning…it can also be a week, weekend or a daily escape to places which give you the feeling of freedom, creativity and relaxation. Working in stimulating environment, meeting new people and exploring different places may give you a novel perspective on the topic you are tackling or bring fresh business connections and ideas.
You can follow Kaja on Instagram.