This article appeared in print as part of “Remote Control”


With a growing gig economy, remote work isn’t just for employees. Think you have what it takes to walk away from your steady paying job and start your own business? Here are some important factors to consider (from someone who’s done it).


  • Get comfortable with accountability. Realize that you’re the only one keeping you on track. Start to think of a to-do list more like a must-do list each day. And be real with yourself when you aren’t performing up to par. “You have to hold yourself accountable to what you’re going to get done that day,” says Amanda Quick, owner of The Hatchery, a co-working space in Columbia.


  • Know yourself. You don’t have to follow the advice of every productivity article you read. Know your strengths and what’s possible for you. “There’s all this data about, ‘the top CEOs wake up four hours before they go to work everyday,’” says Amber Monaco, a full-time freelancer and founding member of The Hatchery. “That doesn’t work for me at all. I’m not a morning person.” Not into techy time-tracking apps? Monaco uses pen and paper and has recently started bullet journaling, a quick method of tracking goals and day-to-day activities. “I’ve just really gotten to know my strengths, and I’ve accepted them for what they are.”


  • Know what lifestyle you want. Working remotely or starting your own business could affect your income level. Decide if you’re comfortable living within different means. Monaco got rid of many expenses and spent two years traveling around the world and working from whatever coffee shop or co-working space she could find. Her decrease in expenses made a decrease in income work for her.


  • Confront the possibility of failure. Monaco wanted to be realistic about the risks involved in her new venture. “What am I going to do when I run out of money? What am I going to do if my sister needs a new kidney and I have to come back tomorrow?” she says. “So I had to get over and really let go of those things. I had to come to terms with the fact that failure is a real, real option.”

Recent News

DIY & Debt-free: The Rigdons’ Home Renovations on a Budget

Sometimes you hear a story that grabs you — someone does something heroic and it inspires you to try something heroic too. That’s what...

Nominate a high school senior for 20 Under 20!

We’re looking for Columbia’s next generation of young leaders to join 2018’s class of 20 Under 20, our annual list celebrating the young adults...

Smokestack Art and The Loop

At a recent conference in Winnipeg I had the pleasure of visiting The Forks, an area located at the junction of two large rivers....

Building a Successful Employee Wellness Program

This article appeared in print as part of “Doing Well: What’s the Real Value of Employee Wellness” In a 2010 Harvard Business Review article,...

CBT Wants Your Opinions!

  We want CBT to be a place where people can exchange ideas to make our community better. With that in mind, we’re going...