More people than ever are adjusting to a remote work lifestyle due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and it can be a tough adjustment for many at first.
hygge fam member Crockett Sewell experienced this firsthand when his previous job moved to a work-from-home format at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. The position wasn’t supposed to be a remote position, so it was a change Crockett was not expecting.
However, after he figured out how to make working from home a more enjoyable experience, he realized he really liked the flexibility and opportunities remote work could offer. In June he started a fully remote position with the University of Southampton as their Country Development Manager for the USA. Given that Southampton is based in England, it’s safe to say he’ll be working remotely for the foreseeable future.
As the country development manager, Crockett works with prospective students who are interested in going to the UK for their undergraduate or master’s degrees. He’s also responsible for fostering relationships for the university with other colleges and companies here in the U.S.
About a month before starting his position with Southampton in June, Crockett also moved back to Charlotte. He previously lived here while attending Queens University of Charlotte, but then moved away for four years after graduation. He loved the city though, and says when he had the opportunity to move back here, he jumped on it.
We sat down with Crockett to talk with him about the pros and cons of remote work, his favorite things about Charlotte and tips he has for others who might find themselves working from home.
What do you like about working remotely? What do you dislike?
I definitely love the flexibility of working remotely and moving to different spaces. Some days or parts of the day it may make more sense for me to work at home and be away from everything. If I want a different environment or a space where I can feel like I’m in an office and focus, I have hygge to go to. I didn’t realize how much I would enjoy working remotely until I figured out that balance. Unfortunately, it can sometimes feel like I’m disconnected from my team, but I think the positives definitely outweigh the negatives to remote work.
What made you seek out a coworking space?
I knew that I wanted to be able to separate my home from my work at least part of the time. As I said, some days it’s nice to be at home and feel a bit more relaxed, but I’ve always loved an office setting and the structure that it provides. hygge is definitely the perfect place to provide this because I can be in a social setting that still allows me to really focus. I also knew that it would be great to have the hygge community since the majority of my team is based in another country!
What’s your favorite thing about Charlotte?
This is a very hard question, as there are so so so many things about Charlotte I love! From the day I moved here, I felt at home. It’s one of those cities that truly feels like it has the best of all worlds, where you can get the city-vibe as well as amazing local and eclectic neighborhoods that all have their own flavor. Above all of that, however, the people here truly make it what it is for me. Not only do I have some amazing friends from college, but as soon as I moved back, I started meeting new people that were so incredibly welcoming. Living in other cities, you almost forget how nice people can be, but Charlotte will always remind you how amazing people are.
What are some tips you have for other folks working remotely to be successful/figure out ways to enjoy it?
One of the things that helped me the most is identifying a space that allows me to keep the similar routine of commuting to and working in a structured office space. The structure is important to keep up productivity and focus, especially if you’re mostly working at home. Being able to have a coworking space to go to has really made that so much easier. Getting up and getting ready then commuting makes it feel like any other work day, whereas it can be easy to be more relaxed if you are just at home all day.
It’s also very helpful to have people to work alongside and give you more of that regular office experience if you miss that personal connection. I think most people at Hygge are open to conversation and meeting new people, so it’s even better than most office spaces I’d say!