Today and tomorrow, Grow Remote is hosting a ‘Meitheal’ in Kinvara, County Galway, to celebrate the first birthday of the organisation. We’ve written about Grow Remote here before. We sponsored them and attended their second national event held in Tubbercurry earlier this year. We’ve featured videos from that event over the past few weeks.

Do you know there are 360 jobs currently available in office-less companies? Grow Remote is a volunteer community of people who believe remote work is a powerful tool for community development. Some of those people decided to turn their conversations into action and they discovered that idea had a momentum all of its own.

Co-founder Tracy Keogh explained the genesis of Grow Remote in an interview for The Blacknight Podcast. Part of its secret is that it offers great opportunities for businesses to acquire talented staff, without the encumbrance of geographical restrictions. And the benefits for employees and their communities are obvious too.

“There are huge benefits to companies in hiring remote workers, and if you speak to the companies, particularly those who are at the other extreme and they’ve got no offices whatsoever, they’re like: but why do companies want to hire just within a 50km radius of their office? It makes no sense.”

In Tubbercurry we met John O’Duinn who told us that state governments in the US have begun to incentify remote workers to move to their regions, bringing their paychecks with them.

 

We’ve also published interviews with Cian Collins, Seamus Flynn and Joann Hosey, chairperson of Smart Community South Sligo. And we’ve interviewed Sean Brady from Cloud Assist, who shared his practical experience of changing a company culture to a 100% distributed company with a no-visit rule.

Last month Grow Remote brought their story to Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, and they succeeded as one of the six organisations awarded funding by SEI this year. Tracy Keogh’s two-minute pitch to SEI is well worth watching.

 

In the past year Grow Remote has organised in 10 countries and over 90 local communities around the world. They’ve held more than 80 local awarenesss and education events and trained 110 people in the skill of remote work. They will shortly launch Ireland’s first QQI-accredited remote working training course. Their mission is to make employment both visible and accessible to the communities that need it.

It’s not without its challenges, of course, and this weekend’s event is particularly focussed on practical help, with a series of workshops planned for tomorrow. But let’s give credit where it is due, and celebrate the achievements of the past year. At Blacknight, we’re proud to have played our part and we’d like to say: comhgháirdeachas! Go maire sibh!