“Don’t ever work for anyone, but yourself!” was my advice to my son as he was growing up. In 2004 I decided to give self-employment a try. It went well. I ended up working for myself from home for the following 14 years.
As you would imagine this gave me a lot of freedom and opportunity. I believe, I used at least some of it wisely.
It was nice to get rid of my 10 hours a week commute.
It was awesome to be close to my family. I have great memories of my son watching cartoons (using headphones) while sitting beside me as I work. When he started school, I would take him in the morning and pick him up after. I was close by at home as he played outside with his friends.
We spent time traveling US and Canada. For many years we traveled in our camper converted minivans. We covered almost all the provinces in Canada and most of continental states in the US.
When my son got older, we traveled the world. We took two trips, both over two months long. First covering 15 countries in Europe by train, second 9 countries in Asia, Australia and New Zealand by planes.
More importantly for all this time, I had no boss. No clients that I was forced to work with. No set hours of operation. No projects that I did not want to work on. Basically no annoyances that most of us face while being an employee.
2018. I made the decision to join Arctiq.
First of all, I had some explaining to do to my son. I still tell him “Don’t ever work for anyone else, but yourself!”. Except now, I follow it up with “Unless they are a company like Arctiq.”.
I came across Arctiq a couple of years back through an acquaintance of mine. He told me how things work here. I even dropped by the office to check it out. It all looked and sounded quite good. I was starting to have thoughts… Thoughts in line that it would be nice to be a part of a company like that.
Most 9 to 5 workers would probably think that I am crazy to give up working for myself from home and become an employee once more.
Let me tell you from experience. There are things that working alone, by yourself, for yourself include that are not all that great. Things like boredom, lack of communication, absence of team spirit and feeling of belonging.
I saw all these things at Arctiq.
Then, I discovered that they don’t have bosses. In fact, it’s a dirty word around here.
Team members set their own hours, for most part and can work from home if it is more convenient.
All the benefits of what I was missing without most of drawbacks of what I don’t. Quite a catch.
I started asking my acquaintance about a possibility of me joining the team. Sometime after, he had told me that there is an opportunity. I jumped on it.
I should mention that few other things fell into place by now. My son is now in college and lives there. I moved back to the city and my commute is now 15 to 20 minutes by car or 30 by subway.
It is my third month here. I am learning A LOT. I have a chance to be part of projects that are more challenging and interesting than those that I can do and get on my own.
I learned that asking to allocate someone’s time to my project is simple. “Just ask the person!” I was told. They are the only ones managing their time. A new way of thinking for me, yet a very welcome one.
I am amazed by how well respected Arctiq is, by clients, peers and technology providers. Arctiq’s team has been working with many large enterprise customers in Canada. It is no small accomplishment. Especially being a relatively young company.
I still work from home most days as I transition, but now I have a team that I feel a part of. I am learning to “play nice with others”.
Growing up in Soviet Union, I have learned to dislike uniforms. School, army and otherwise. Arctiq changed even that. I was presented with personalized “kicks” and a hoodie that I love and wear even when I work from home. And of course even this is optional here…