There was a time when dress down Fridays were as laid back as we got, but the rise in startup culture and small business has made balancing career and lifestyle a big priority.

Working on the coast feels very different to work life in the city – it’s still a dog eat dog world, but there’s no rush hour, no big city commute.

You can still get a surf or a swim in after a work out before hitting the office, or grab a bite and take the time to read the paper before you’re knee deep in it for the day. And while the fashion stakes aren’t that high, it doesn’t mean everyone gets around in board shorts and thongs

So what makes working in this city different to the next?


Not having to travel 30-90mins to work every day. Oh if only, I hear you. Giving you 1-3 hours extra to pick up in leisure time (or get more work done). How you spend the extra time is entirely up to you.

I used to work at Robina, the commute, even was only 25 minutes and it was on the motorway so traffic was generally flowing. It sounds crazy, especially if you’re from Sydney or Melbourne and peak hour is just a part of everyday life. But think of what life would be like doing something more fulfilling beside sitting in traffic if you could cut your travel times by more than half.

THE COMMUTE

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It’s the coast right, so no one expects you to fit into the corporate suit and tie mould. Anything quirky and fun goes, and it’s easy to find your own style.

Now I’m not for second saying that flip flops, board shorts and a singlet will fly. You’ll still find designer pieces worn by many, but unless your attending court for the day you won’t see a pair of stockings in sight, especially not in summer.

THE FASHION

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Advancements in technology have caused a tremendous paradigm shift in the way we do business today.

One in five people on the coast are self employed and many government departments and small business’s are permitting, if not encouraging, flexible work environments so it’s no surprise that many are opting for time away from the office.

By the pool, on the deck, at your favourite brew house, under a tree while the kids play in the park, all at a time that’s suitable to you.

THE OFFICE

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The unconventional office is on the rise. It’s now easier than ever to be fully connected where ever you are which is why big businesses are de-centralising and offering greater flexibility and work life balance.

Apart from working from home or on the boat, you’ll often find me at my favourite coffee shop (currently The Paddock at Miami or Substance at Runaway Bay) escaping the office for some quiet time in the hope of being more productive.

I guess for me, working away from the office goes a long way towards filling up the inspiration tank and damm it feels good for the soul.

I don’t know whether it’s inherent of the lifestyle on the coast or it’s just the way the corporate culture has been heading the last few years but it seems society is increasingly aware of the issue of work-life balance.

Forward-thinking organisations are adopting flexible working hours for the benefit of both their teams and clients, thus influencing productivity and the bottom line.

Think about half the office starting at 7am and finishing at 3pm and the other half starting at 10am and finishing at 6pm. Even if you knock off at 3pm and head to the beach, if you’re anything like the rest of the world you’re still attending to any urgent emails at 6pm anyway.

It’s a win-win for all and I think we’re going to see more of it from big and small businesses in the future.

WORK LIFE BALANCE

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We may very well have a laid back working culture on the Gold Coast but the business community is vibrant and I love that there is always something happening.

What’s your style? Do you like the frenzy of the city or does taking a more balanced approach to the week feel more like you? If you’re in small business, how do you structure your week and is it harder because you have the freedom to do what ever you want?

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