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by Walter Homs | March 10, 2020
I’ve been passionate about cuisine for as long as I can remember
I attended the Ritz school for kids in Paris at the age of five, did an internship in a 3 Michelin star restaurant at fifteen and at twenty-six I ate in the best restaurant in the world.
Let me tell you the wonderful tale of the latter.
I love video games. I’m one of these 90’s kids whose idea of a perfect weekend is to isolate yourself in a dark room and play until your eyes burn. I stumbled upon an ad on Facebook for 5CA and found myself drawn to the idea of working remotely and for a company specialized in video game support.
A few great interviews later, here I am in a cold house in Norway working remotely as a Team Lead.
I have to say, the first time leading a team without ever being in the same room is quite a unique and unsettling experience in the first few weeks, but I have found that it makes you work a lot on your communication skills, think outside the box and it can lead to creating very special bonds with people and gives you opportunities to control your work environment. Which is very cool.
But back to the food.
It’s funny how some thoughts get stuck with you, I remember thinking to myself once as a kid that I wanted to be rich enough one day that if I decide to eat pasta I could jump in a plane and fly to Italy.
And this exact thought came back to me while exchanging food stories with one of my agents during a coaching session.
And then it hit me.
I could do this now.
Thanks to the amazing prices of flights with low-cost companies in Europe and the immense catalog of beautiful apartments you can rent for a week on Airbnb around the world, I could actually go eat pasta over the weekend in Italy.
A few phone calls and reservations later, I had my flight and I decided to stay for a week in Bologna to eat myself through the foods that I’ve been dreaming about for years.
I would wake up, get an amazing breakfast, login, go through my workday as usual and go explore the streets filled with delicious fresh pastas and charcuterie and I was filled with a rare satisfaction.
The possibilities were endless, a million dishes and places to visit were rattling in my head.
I love finding these little hidden gems. I write everything down in my precious notebook; the addresses, the dishes that I loved. What I love even more is sharing it with my fellow foodies.
I was on google maps trying to find my next food trip when it hit me that I was 20 minutes away from Modena, the home of the best restaurant in the world from 2016-2018: Osteria Francescana, run by the famous chef Massimo Bottura. (There’s a great episode of Chef’s table on Netflix about the restaurant.)
I knew that you had to book a table in advance. Like, almost a year in advance.
My better half suggested that I could call them and see if there would be any possibilities to maybe even eat in a corner of the kitchen or to be called if there were any cancellations.
I went on the website on signed myself on the waiting list every night until the end of my trip.
Sadly, the phone never rang, my mailbox was still empty and then the last day came.
I was about to give up and book a table in this delicious little trattoria a few blocks away when suddenly, 30 seconds before my next meeting, my phone lights up and it’s an unknown number. I pick up.
They have a table for me tonight, one of the guests couldn’t make it.
I finished my workday and ran to the train. 20 minutes later I’m walking through the streets of Modena on my way to the best restaurant In the world thinking to myself that this is the beginning of my food journey.
The dinner was amazing, I have rarely experienced such a journey through food. The wines paired with it were so delicate and unique. I was the happiest person in the room and I think it showed.
I got to meet the chef, got a nice bottle of balsamic vinegar and left incredibly full with a blissful smile.
I couldn’t have done this without the opportunity to work remotely for an amazing company, doing what I love, in a field that I love, with amazing people.
After leading team and working in some of the most prestigious kitchens in France and carrying his guitar through some of the most dangerous clubs of New Orleans, Walter is now leading a team of fierce video game support agents remotely and traveling the world to quench his thirst for new tastes and adventures. You can catch him in your home town devouring some local food or behind his favorite laptop playing some action RPGs.
I started working for 5CA back in October 2019. Currently, I’m working as a Gaming Technology Support Agent in Spain. My job as an expert on the products of the company I'm supporting is to offer support to customers and get them up, running and happy in no time.
2020 is set to be a blockbuster year for gaming. In particular, mobile games that don’t need the player to invest in a console or any other equipment. One of the effects of the stay-at-home and quarantine orders during the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has been that people have needed to find things to keep them occupied.
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When you look at how many people searched for ‘work from home’ in the past year, you see the chart soars in March 2020 just as many national governments were applying stay-at-home orders and quarantines to help reduce the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus. This is no surprise. Every company that could possibly keep functioning with remote workers asked their people to go home.
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Have you noticed how many companies and senior executives are now experts in building a work from home strategy? According to Malcolm Gladwell it takes 10.000 hours of individual practice to become an expert at anything. Have those 320 business hours since the 1st of March really made everybody an expert?
Across the world, business journals have been endlessly reporting of the heroic efforts of companies with large numbers of office-based employees managing to switch to a work-from-home strategy. This has particularly impacted the contact centers because they have a large number of people in a small area and this is no longer acceptable because of the social distancing required to keep us all safe.
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