Today, we’re sharing our interview with Taylor Coil, the Marketing Director at Tortuga, a fully remote ecommerce company that makes gear for city travel.
Taylor Coil is a direct-to-consumer Marketing Director at Tortuga, specifically known for carry on sized travel backpacks. When she’s not working (or traveling) she’s most often found in a hammock with a book, riding her bike around town, hiking a local trail, or playing board games at a brewery with her friends.
How Does Your Remote Workday Look Like?
My workday is pretty standard at this point – I’ve worked remotely for four years and have landed on a routine that works for me. It’s changed a lot over the years as life has shifted (my routine was particularly variable in my former life as a full-time digital nomad), but here’s what it’s like right now.
I wake up without an alarm most mornings. I’m an early riser by nature, so I’m always out of bed by 7:30 am – often earlier. I like to have slow weekday mornings with my partner, replete with coffee and cuddles and stretching and happy chats. We’ll often pull out our computers and start our workdays together at our kitchen table. He’ll drive to his office, and I’ll usually bike to WeWork (I have a hot desk and live about a mile away) or continue working from home.
I do deep work in the mornings when my mind is freshest, then move onto less thought-intensive tasks in the afternoon.
I like to take long afternoon breaks, too – I usually bike home from WeWork around 2 pm, then spend an offline hour straightening my house or reading a book or taking a walk before opening my computer again to finish my day. My partner gets home around 4 or 5, and we’ll often spend some time closing the workday next to each other before heading off to our post-work activities – jiu jitsu for him, dance class or a bike ride for me.
What Tools Do You Use to Get Things Done?
When I’m having trouble focusing, I listen to classical music or use the Pomodoro method.
But honestly – my biggest tool for getting things done is having a life I love.
If I’m not effective at work, I’m too distracted later to enjoy a leisurely walk around my city or an afternoon in my hammock with a book or an evening giggling with my partner. Getting things done frees my mind to indulge in the simple moments of my life. That’s the best motivator in the world.
What’s the Biggest Challenge of Remote Work?
Loneliness. I’m a relatively introverted person and therefore didn’t anticipate how much I’d miss the community of in-person colleagues.
I’m lucky to have found a fantastic community of badass women at my coworking space.
I’ve been working from that location for about a year now, and it’s amazing how much it’s improved my quality of life. I remember the isolation I felt working from home every day when I lived in NYC, and it was a huge challenge.
What Are the Advantages of Remote Work?
You get to decide what your life looks like. You get to decide how work fits into that. You play by your rules, not those of the hustle-obsessed American workplace. It’s less about a set of advantages, to me, and more about a fundamental belief in how work should be approached. I’m pretty idealistic about it.
What’s the Future of Remote Work?
The vast majority of remote companies are B2B, many of them SaaS. I think we’ll see more physical product companies embracing remote work in the future.
I hope that Tortuga serves as a beacon of sorts for budding remote ecommerce brands – we’re living proof that a profitable, growing, fully remote consumer product company is possible. We’ve been at it for 10 years now and aren’t going anywhere.
What Made You Consider Remote Work?
In 2015, I hated my job, I was working all the time, and I made next to nothing.
I needed an entirely different life and wanted my next era to be built around travel. But I didn’t want to take a career break. So, I needed a remote job. I was willing to take… pretty much anything to enable a life of digital nomadism, but I was fortunate enough to land my dream job at Tortuga in the process.
What Are Your Favorite Destinations in the World?
Southern Europe, for sure. I find Croatia’s sunshine, sea, history, and sheer beauty to be soul-healing. I also loved Portugal – especially Porto – and would go back in a heartbeat.
What People Who Want to Work with You Need to Have?
A deep belief in a human-centric workplace where people matter more than anything. We look for people who share our values first and foremost. We like small egos and psychological safety.
From a skills perspective, we hire self-starters – you have to be a self-starter in order to succeed outside of a structured office.
We also hire for day-one impact, not future potential. That means something different in every role, but it boils down to the same thing: to excel at Tortuga, you have to be able to do the job at a high level of competency from the start. Hand-holding and remote work don’t mesh well.
Self-starters who impact from day one tend to blossom and grow at Tortuga. In fact, our attrition rate is 0%.