Remote work:
How to work the Precision Nutrition way.

By Phil Caravaggio

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I strongly recommend you buy a book. It’s not a nutrition or fitness book. No one on our team wrote it or had anything to do with it. And I won’t make a cent if you buy it. But I want you to buy it just the same, because I genuinely believe it could change your life.

What if you could …

  • Get your dream job doing the most meaningful work you’ve ever done, alongside people as talented and passionate as you?
  • Earn the same money as your peers — or more — with full health benefits and 4+ weeks of vacation?
  • Live wherever you want in the world and never commute another day in your life?

Nonsense, right?

But here’s the thing: I have that job. And so do the other 40 people who work full-time at Precision Nutrition.

35 of those 40 people — 88% of the company — work remotely, all over the world. The other 5 work in a beautiful office in Toronto, simply because that’s where they feel they can be most productive. Their choice.

I’ve never shared those numbers before. I didn’t think it would be relevant, except to people applying for positions at PN. But now I’m convinced that most people don’t know or believe these kinds of jobs even exist.

Well, these jobs do exist. And you can get one.

Technology has turned remote work from a fantasy into a real-life opportunity for anyone who wants to make a good living and a difference in the world.

Remote: Office Not Required

David Heinemeier Hansson and Jason Fried have written the book that will show you how it’s possible: Remote: Office Not Required.

I spoke with David a few days ago about our experience with remote work culture. David (or DHH, as he’s known in the tech community) created the software Ruby on Rails that pretty much runs most of the Internet, including huge sites like Twitter.

He’s also a partner at 37signals, makers of Basecamp, a project management tool that thousands of companies (including PN) use every day. He’s built his career and products entirely through remote work.

Here are some of the key advantages of remote work, as explained by David (with my comments).

Live wherever you want.

David says:

Literally my entire current life is possible because of remote work. My family and I can look at the globe, ask ourselves where the best places to live are, and live there. In the past year we spent 179 days in Spain, 124 days in Malibu, 57 days in Chicago, and the rest on the road racing cars.”

David really does race, by the way. PNers have similar stories. I spend a month a year in Italy and travel another 8 weeks or so. JB works from home in a beautiful small town on a lake. One of our developers is moving to Belize. Remote work has made all of this possible — even trivial.

Stop commuting.

“There are very, very few things that can compete with ridding yourself of a daily commute.  The amount of money it would take to compensate for getting two hours of your life back, and not just any two hours, but two of the most grueling, draining hours that you can imagine — it’s hard to set a price on that. And if you do set a price, it’s a very high price.”

Research data show that the longer the commute, the less happy you’ll be. I’ve since reduced my commute to the length of the staircase to my home office.

See your family.

“My wife and I had a son 10 months ago, and I get to see him so much every day. We go to lunch all the time; there’s a park 5 minutes from my home and we go there and play every afternoon. I would miss so much of that if I had to go to an office.

I get up for a glass of water, and I spend ten minutes with him, in the middle of the day, and it’s amazing.  Versus spending those ten minutes doing precisely what at an office? Talking more shop?  I would never trade that, and I think once you’ve had a taste of it, you’re not going back.”

In my experience, seeing family is one of the primary reasons people choose remote work.

JB can play with his two young children each day because, like David, he works from home. Our CFO, Robert, and CTO, Luke, are in the same position, with young children they’ve chosen to spend more time with. One of our writers, Susan, takes advantage of the wi-fi offered on trains to juggle her responsibilities as a working mother and daughter providing elder care for an aging parent in another city. And project manager Erin probably does about one-third of her work in her children’s hockey arenas.

You can’t buy those moments. But they’re there for the taking if you work remotely.

Combine personal and professional ambitions.

“It doesn’t have to be a trade-off anymore.  You used to have to choose between fulfilling personal or professional ambitions.  Now, it doesn’t have to be a choice: you can combine the life you want to live with the work you want to do.”

Amongst the people working at PN are published authors, surfers, triathletes, competitive martial artists, mothers and fathers, photographers — remote work allows us to pursue those things while also doing work we’re proud of. We arrange our schedules and travel to make it happen, and bring a MacBook with us wherever we go.

Traditionally, people sacrificed either the personal or the professional side of life.

They did work they were proud of at the expense of their personal passions. Or they followed those passions, taking whatever paid work they could find, wherever and whenever they found it, even if they hated it. They understood that “following their dreams” meant likely poverty, social stigma (“Hey hippie, get a real job!”), and lifelong hustling to survive.

That no longer needs to be the case.

Bonus benefit: Build something that matters to you.

There’s one more thing that remote work enables you to do, from my own personal experience at PN: build something that matters to you.

Precision Nutrition would not exist without remote work. We needed to build a team of talented people across many skill sets, all of whom had to care deeply about the particular type of coaching we do. That would have been impossible had we hung a shingle in Austin or Toronto and only looked locally.

Having trouble finding people in your area who are passionate about the same things as you?

Look globally and you’re sure to find more. Many more.

In many cases, they’re looking for you too.

Start by reading this short, powerful book

This post isn’t intended to be a how-to; just a why-to — merely to point out that there may be career options available to you that you haven’t considered. The how-to part is the real value of the book David and Jason have put together.

Remote: Office Not Required is the Bible for the aspiring remote worker and the ultimate “how-to” guide.

Remote work has made an almost immeasurable difference in my life personally and in the life of everyone here at PN. It’s how we’re able to do what do.

Buy it, read it, and put some of Jason’s and David’s ideas into action.

It’ll certainly change the way you think about your career. And it may just change your life.

remote front 678x1024 Remote work: How to work the PN way.
“Remote: Office Not Required” available at Amazon

Interested in working with Precision Nutrition?

Then we’d love to tell you about some of the positions available.

Just click the link below to explore what’s available, learn what we’re looking for, and discover some of the benefits of working remotely.

Awesome, tell me about PN’s career opportunities!