Working From Melbourne

St.Kilda Beach, watching the sunset and taking notes for a concept paper

Between 5th and 28th of February – right now – I am working from Melbourne. Melbourne is an awesome city, that I like a lot, and I have a number of really good friends here. I get to see them only if one of us travels around half the globe. After having been here for the first time in late 2006 / early 2007 I decided to try and come back every year. Not to make holidays, but to work from here and spend time with friends, in nature or at the beach during the evenings and weekends. In Melbourne I also had my first private tango lessons, and I am slowly starting to make friends there, too. Funny enough the world is so small, that I met herea tango friend from Zurich on Saturday night. None of us knew we were here at the same time…

When I tell people, especially back home in Switzerland,  that I am not here for holidays, they have a hard time believing me.

Notes in my Moleskin sketchbook

Well… One major thing I am doing here is writing an English short version of my book Business Campaigning. In German it has 300 pages and is so specific for the German markets, tha

t it’s easier to write a new one from scratch than having all those pages translated and rewritten. Apart from that, it was “easy” to write 300 pages but then I didn’t have enough time left to shorten the book. Today I know how to limit the number of pages to maximum 100. So, that’s my goal for this month.

Coffee, the Melbournian way – strong and tasty brain fuel

But I also do other work. Friday night, one hour after my arrival, I got a call from a client back home in Switzerland. She needed a concept paper until the end of this week. Back home it was 3pm, here it was 1am – but being a late night person (and worker) I don’t care if clients call me at that time. And when I do the work for them and deliver at 4pm, it is 6am back home, so they come into the office and find my email as one of the first things. That’s really great. Especially when the job is issues and media monitoring and the reports on media coverage is on my client’s desk even before she or he starts working.

Art work in Fitzroy.

Of course I cannot attend meetings in person. But with today’s technology (Skype and iChat) it is so easy to set up a video conference and attend the meeting virtually. That is almost as good as in person. I even did it this winter when I was having a cold that might have been a flu. I did neither show up at the meeting nor cancel it. My business partner, who was at the meeting, had his MacBook with him and we had a Skype conference. Most of the work that I do, I can do anywhere. All that I need is my brains, my MacBook and an internet connection. And, of course, my iPhone. I even have an Australian number, so that I can be online all the time without going bankrupt due to roaming costs.Last not least, there is one factor that has to be said loud and clearly. Travelling and working from different places is inspiring, expands one’s horizon and causes you to meet new people who might become important strategic business partners. On Saturday at Nineteen Squares, owned by my two friends Jeff and Katie Wong, I met Cate Newman Marshall,  a marketing coach who seems to share the same ideas and approach on marketing and communication. This meeting was so inspiring that I decided to start my book with writing aboutit.

Dinner in Fitzroy, a centre for arts, architecture and creativity

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