The World Is Flat – 5 Tips for Working Abroad

I’ve been fortunate over the past 18 months to travel to Europe on three different occasions. I remember being nervous about keeping my business moving before the first trip, but those worries quickly washed away. The world is indeed flat, and we have so many opportunities for connectivity at our fingertips now, it really doesn’t matter where we are in the world (unless there’s no wifi!).

Here are some tips I’ve found useful while working abroad:

  1. Notifying clients and project partners of travel – I alert clients and partners two weeks in advance of the dates I’ll be gone, what the time difference will be, that I’ll working while abroad and that I’ll be reachable via email and Skype. For everyone else in my network, I simply change my voicemail message directing people to send me an email (phone calls and regular text messaging rates are very expensive). I don’t put an out of office email message on unless I’ll be completely out of range and unreachable.
  2. Download Whatsapp, Skype and Viber on your smartphone – Whatsapp allows you to send texts, videos and your location free; Skype is perfect for video meetings or when needing to dial an international number directly and Viber is my favorite for making free phone calls.
  3. Identify a go-to wifi location – The first thing I do when landing in another country is turn my cellular data off. It’s way too expensive! As long as you have a go-to wifi spot to check messages and work on projects, you’ll be good to go.
  4. Schedule regular team Skype meetings – These are important while the team is all on the same continent, and even more so when they’re not. Often times I’ll schedule a team touch base call just before a client meeting in order to streamline calls.
  5. Meetings with clients – The beauty of being in a different time zone is that workflow is on a 24-hour cycle. You’re working while they’re sleeping and vice versa. Schedule any meetings while abroad as soon as you can because the window is small (I typically schedule between 8-10am PT). If it’s a conference call with multiple people, I’ll provide my conference line and call in via Skype. If it’s a meeting with one or more people from one company, I prefer video Skype.

Next time an opportunity presents itself to travel abroad, I say “Carpe Diem” or “Aprovechar el Día.” Life is too short to wait for the “right time;” the time is now! Enjoy your travels and please share your additional travel tips with us here.

Kim’s Success Story: Connecting Science and the Arts Through PR

Read more about Kim’s story on The Story Exchange and how she’s using public relations to connect science and the arts.

The Story Exchange’s 1,000 stories campaign highlights women entrepreneurs from around the world, asking them to share their stories of why they started their businesses and what they hope to achieve.

Kim’s story on starting KDR PR and co-founding STEAMConnect.org is featured via http://thestoryexchange.org/kim-richards/. Share her story with your networks to pass along her motivation and inspire others to dream big.

A Talk With SDSU PR Students about Finding Passion

Last week, Kim spoke at SDSU’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapter meeting to share her story about starting KDR PR and to encourage students to let their passions drive career decisions.

All students had the chance to share their passions with the group, and then Kim shared her passion for arts and education, and how it led her to where she is today running KDR PR and growing STEAMConnect.org.

Most often, PR majors come out of college pursuing careers in hospitality, lifestyle and high tech, and several agencies in San Diego focus in these areas. Kim reminded the students that any company that has a public face needs a communications plan at some level, so even the most niche markets can present great opportunity. Education isn’t an area that many PR firms focus on, and even fewer (none that we’re aware of) focus on the intersection of arts and STEM in education.

As a PRSSA SDSU alumna, I was ecstatic to return to campus and participate in this discussion because I was fortunate enough to blend my passion for the arts with my career directly out of college.

Kim’s advice about following our passions had many students thinking differently about their paths. One student expressed her deep passion for dance, but hesitation to pursue it because she was told that “it wouldn’t pay the bills.” Kim’s story is definitely an example of how this is not true.

Video testimonial: My journey to find my passion

It’s an exciting journey I’m on blending my passions in life with my career building KDR PR and . The following is a testimonial of this journey that started with the wonderful Marcy Morrison of Careers with Wings. It’s an amazing feeling to know that you’re on the right path! My takeaway from it all: Take a risk and jump into the unknown because you truly never know.

Interview: Tips from a First-Time Entrepreneur

Being an entrepreneur gives you the freedom to put your unique skills and perspectives to work – to create something new. It’s an exciting challenge, and rarely a straightforward path. Here are a few tips from my experience as a first-time entrepreneur:

  1. Focus on your passion – Your passion will drive you, just remember to stay focused. It’s easy to get distracted and pulled off course. Resist the urge!
  2. Persistence – Once your sight is set on the vision, go for it with persistence. If one approach doesn’t work, come at it from a different angle. If you’re not getting the response you want, re-package your message and try again.
  3. Have fun – Lighten up a little and try to enjoy the journey. You’re embarking of this new venture because you love it, right?

For more insights from my journey into entrepreneurship, listen to my interview on Hera Hub’s BlogTalkRadio show, Success Secrets of Enterprising Women.