What it's like to go on a weekend workation

End of May, we gathered an inspiring group of entrepreneurs and remote workers for a weekend of coworking, learning from each other and fun. And called it: a weekend workation! Get work doneOn Friday, we started with a coworking session at the spacious coworking space Het Nieuwe Warenhuis. Everyone shared their goals for the weekend and co-organizer Eva Krul from Outbound Kitetravel shared her inspiring entrepreneurial story, the concept of Ikigai and why "Focus" is so important as a business owner. She gave us a great walking tour of her home town Alkmaar and we spent the afternoon exploring the city and trying out longboarding - quite a step out of the comfort zone for some of us. And how cool to try something new and succeed with the encouragement and support of the group! After typical Dutch Friday Drinks at the coworking space the evening was crowned by a beautiful vegetarian dinner at Restaurant Soepp. We shared interesting conversations and it already felt as if we knew each other for much longer than just a day. Get the balanceThe second day started with a productive workshop around "How to make flexwork work". Although it was Saturday morning, all participants were wide awake, eager to share best practices for productivity, business success and work-life balance. We discussed how to deal with tasks that drain energy and how to make space for more of the activities that give energy. We explored how to provide great service and high quality to our clients and at the same time manage boundaries and take care of our own needs. We established why a social support network of co-workers, mentors, accountability buddies, friends and family is so important for remote or solo workers. And we shared best practices around how to set goals, plan our agenda and manage tasks with the help of apps, planners and productivity techniques. Enjoy!After a yummy vegetarian lunch the group headed back to the beautiful city of Alkmaar. Some decided to join the Gay Pride with SUP boards – again a first for some of us. Others participated in a workshop given by Nanda from El Kombi SUP. She taught us how to reduce waste in our everyday life and use natural products like coconut cream for body care. It’s simply amazing how many cool and useful things we learned within those two days already. Add to that all the creative conversations that arise when a bunch of graphic designers, accountants, branding experts, service designers, photographers, travel entrepreneurs and business owners comes together and has the space to think out of the box for two days. If you had walked by our final dinner at Alkmaar City Beach you would have definitely felt that vibe of creative excitement. The real workation experienceThe cozy Airbnb we stayed at definitely also contributed to create such a great feeling of community in such a short time. We prepared breakfast together and took the little ferry to the city centre together. After two packed days of new impressions, we celebrated our new friendship with a game of boules and a well deserved bottle of Champagne. Because celebrating personal growth is just another great best practice of "How to make flexwork work". One of our participants reflected: “Brilliant way to make sure you take some time off, even if it's just to have a nice lunch without the laptop in sight (!!), and co-work with others instead of being in your little bubble all the time. Good for focus and networking! I would actually like it if we had follow-ups.” And that’s exactly what we’re gonna do. We will continue to support each other and share our tips and tricks. And some have already told us they’d like to be part of the next edition of our Weekend Workation in Alkmaar. We already started planning for 2020! This article was written by Anne-Marie Jentsch, co-founder of Out of Office Workations and owner of Out of Office Consulting.

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