Out of Office, our online event about remote work, is today. Are you joining us?

You’ve probably been there: someone says “I work remotely” and you think they’re all about posting pictures of their laptop next to a macchiato in a hip coffee shop, working from a beach, or—worst case scenario—preaching about some obscure, passive—of course—way to earn the income that unlocks the chance to live that lifestyle.

Whilst that’s not necessarily old news, there’s so much more to remote work: think about productivity, growth, dealing with stress, or onboarding. Curious about how distributed companies, remote freelancers, but even the office worker who occasionally works at home deal with those? Good, because they’re all topics that will be discussed at Out of Office, today, at 4PM UTC.

Out of Office is live streaming online and it’s free

Yep, that’s right. You’ll be able to watch it at your own desk, on your couch (just cast the relevant Chrome tab to your tv if you use a Chromecast), wherever you want.

Reserve your spot now, go to the event page when it’s 4PM UTC, boom, done. Now it’s all about learning and asking questions to our speakers.

Talks & Q&A’s

We’re hosting a pretty nice group of speakers, coming from some of the most influential companies when we’re talking culture and flexibility: if you’re thinking about Basecamp, Toptal, Buffer, yes, we’ve got them all.

Here’s the full schedule:

16:00 – Opening remarks

16:15 – Toptal bootcamp: onboarding with impact, by Jennifer Weinmann (People Operations at Toptal)

17:00 – Productivity, by Rodolphe Dutel (Operations at Buffer)

17:45 – Values of a humane remotee culture: empathy, trust & inclusiveness, by Dino Anderson (Operational Development Consultant)

18:30 – Live Interview with Jason Fried (CEO and co-founder at Basecamp)

19:15 – Dealing with stress in remote teams, by Tom Willmot (CEO and co-founder at Human Made)

20:00 – Closing Remarks

At Human Made we’ve been working hard to put together a strong, BS-free event that will teach you a lot of interesting stuff about something we truly care about. Come watch it and you’ll appreciate.

Join now, there’s still time!

So, want to watch Out of Office? Awesome.

Reserve your spot HERE. Do it now, there are more than 1,000 people who already opted in.

Read more here, and tell your friends on social media you’re joining us. The more the merrier, you know?

My talk at the Surf Office meetup in London

I’ve recently spoken at the Surf Office meetup in London.

Surf Office is one of the most famous remote working-related experiments out there: it’s a place that combines workspace, accommodation and surf, with currently three locations (Gran Canaria, California, Lisbon). If you’re one of those human beings that can work from anywhere, or if your startup is looking for a nice spot where to host a retreat/hackathon, you should definitely check it out and get in touch with them.

This guest post I’ve written for their blog summarises the main points of the talk, and expands on some questions I’ve received afterwards.

And here’s the slide deck. I’m quite proud of the design, with the same font combo of the Sofia deck but richer in visual elements (pictures and colours). Unfortunately, looks like Speaker Deck made it a lot darker than it was originally.

Franz Vitulli’s Equipment List Ep.1: The Marketing Specialist

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a big fan of minimalism in all things, and certainly my workstation doesn’t make an exception. As I work from home I could have easily built a massive battlestation with multiple screens, super stereo system and other awesome tools, but I prefer a setup that can be the same, regardless of the place where I am (home, coffee shop, company retreat, visiting family in Italy, etc.).

I love the idea behind the modern desk, with just a laptop and a smartphone. If you have them packed with the right apps*, you don’t really need anything else (see the video below).

Enjoy the list!

My office toys

MacBook Pro 13″. My trusty main computer. It’s a late-2011 MBP, recently boosted with a 16 GB RAM kit. It’s been with me since I got my Master’s Degree, right before leaving Italy. Still runs Mavericks, and I’m not sure I will upgrade it to Yosemite.

MacBook Air Costa Coffee
MacBook Air @ Costa Coffee (Gatwick Airport)

MacBook Air 11″. This little beast comes with me pretty much anywhere. It’s super silent, quick, as light as an old fashioned paper notebook. Put it in your backpack and you’ll never think you’re carrying a computer. And most importantly, there is no work-related task it can’t handle.

iPhone 5s. Doesn’t need any introduction. Reliable, easy to use, extremely tough after the Case Mate treatment. Nothing fancy, just a stubborn anti-slip black case.

Apple Magic Mouse. I’ve been using a laptop as a main computer since 2005 and never really used a mouse with consistency… I’ve recently decided to get this mouse because playing with Photoshop using the trackpad is a bit of a pain. It’s also good for travelling.

Kindle 4. Another late-2011 gadget I’m not upgrading anytime soon (unless I have to). Plenty of marketing, technology, business and personal development ebooks in there. Long life battery, which is huge advantage for a modern mobile gadget. Consider it a work tool even if it normally sits on your bedside table!

Sony MDR-ZX300. Despite being a musician, I’ve never truly considered myself an audiophile. Especially when it comes to listening to the music while I’m working, I don’t really feel the need for something better than these budget Sony headphones. Whilst they fit well in my MBA bag, I never bring them with me outside (I prefer Apple earbuds).

Ikea Markus. Last addition to the workplace, it’s a comfy and sturdy office chair that I intend to use forever.

Ikea Bräda. This little piece of plastic is one of those things no one would include in their awesome equipment list. But it just works! It’s a nice laptop support that put the keyboard at an angle that makes much easier for you to type.

Next new entries?

Tablet. I’ve been aiming for an iPad Mini for a long time now. It’s just that I’m not sure if it fits my current setup: the MBA is small enough to be carried everywhere, and most of the things I’d do with an iPad can be done on the iPhone. It would surely give the expression “reading experience” a whole new meaning, and yet I don’t know whether or not I’d miss my Kindle if I decide to make the upgrade.

Things I don’t want to see on my desk

Post-it’s, letters, business cards, magazines, random pieces of paper, etc. Most of the clutter on the large majority of desks is paper. And modern laptops and smartphones allow you to take notes on the fly. There’s no need to use paper in 2014. Period.

Pens. The best way to keep paper far from your desk is throwing pens away. Just keep a couple of them (one in your laptop bag, the other one somewhere not so close to your desk).

Food, cups, cutlery, etc. I always have a Bobble jug and a glass on my desk, because I drink a lot of water (at least 10-12 big glasses per day). But I really hate dirty dishes and cups of tea/coffee where they shouldn’t be.

Photo frames. Pictures of loved ones are better on the iPhone lock screen!

Decorative objects, souvenirs and whatnot. I’m just not the right guy for that kind of things.

* think that it’s impossible to work with just laptop and smartphone? You’re not alone.  But I can prove you can. Just wait for the next article in the Equipment List series.