Andrew Jernigan
Co-founder and CEO
February 17, 2020

Interview with Andrew, co-founder and CEO of Insured Nomads

Andrew, co-founder, and CEO of Insured Nomads talks traveling while working, productivity tools, and the best advice he has received.

How did you get started with remote work?

Remote work has been a part of my modus operandi for over 15 years as my wife and I have taken turns in our professional development with various expatriate assignments and international opportunities. This situation has given me the freedom to take my work with me or pioneer new ventures from the road.

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What are you working on?

A lot of my energy is going into the launch of our international medical plans, keeping up with the rebrand/relaunch of our web presence, and building our broker and brand ambassador/influencer network. I am also handling the family aspects of life, such as school sports and beach time.

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How do you stay on task?

Working from lists, a plan, and a focus help me stay on task.

Always remember, your focus determines your reality." - George Lucas, filmmaker

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What do you like about remote work?

Freedom to work from where you choose, as I anticipate working this year from Brazil, the UK, Switzerland, France, Germany and the USA (our corporate offices are in Birmingham, Alabama, USA)

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What do you not like about remote work?

It is not being able to be in person at times when it’s needed most.

Emotionally, it takes intentionality to keep a relationship strong when on the road or away from team members.

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What tools do you use to stay productive?

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How do you use these tools?

  • Global instant messaging and file sharing with WhatsApp
  • Scheduling with Calendly
  • Coordination and communication with Slack
  • Making sure I know what time it is where people are working currently with
  • Staying on top of personal goals and tasks with Todoist

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What about your space helps you to be productive?

Since I work remotely, based in Rio de Janeiro much of the year, air conditioning helps my productivity significantly.

Photo of Andrew at his desk

Photo of Andrew at his desk

If we were meant to stay in one place, we would have roots instead of feet. - Rachel Wolchin, entrepreneur

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What does your workday routine look like?

  • Coffee and calming. 5:30-6:00
  • Time with my wife. 6:00-6:30
  • Breakfast 6:30-6:45
  • Meditation/quiet time. 6:45-7:15
  • Schedule review 7:15-7:30
  • Reading 7:30-8:15
  • Writing 8:15-8:45
  • Snack break 8:45
  • Client responses 9:30-10:30
  • Project management 10:30-12:00
  • Product development 12:00-1:00
  • Lunch 1:00-1:30
  • Calls: 1:30-4:00
  • Family time: 4:00-5:30
  • Finalize work: 5:30-6:30

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How do you decide priorities?

It should fall within the daily plan, but I always work with flexibility. Family comes first so often I need to put all on hold to take care of a situation with my wife or kids, cook, or handle a school or sports requirement.

Priorities require flexibility, and remote work gives this freedom.

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How do you avoid burnout?

Ever since I had open-heart surgery due to stress, I have had the mantra of ‘hurry is my enemy.’

I must enjoy the kids, take time for family needs and my own needs unless I want to burn out emotionally and physically again.

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What is the best advice you have ever received?

"Stop for the one." A dear friend and coworker lived by this and told me that I must be willing to stop for the one in front of me to care for their needs, and I believe this is the key to my success.

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What do you look for when you hire a remote worker or freelancer for your team?

I believe that someone should do what they commit to do, at the promised time. I look for honesty and dependability.

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What are you looking to achieve in the next five years?

My goal is to be leading the most trusted name in insurance for the location independent and remote workforce within the next five years, with our products sold by all leading brokers and aggregators.

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What advice would you give to a new remote worker?

  • Develop your skills as a specialist within your field.
  • Get credentialed, licensed, or certified.
  • Have testimonials from your clients so that your personal platform is solid.

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What are the benefits of building a remote team?

Each person gets to have the freedom of their schedule while working where they choose with less formality of a fixed address and hours.

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What are the challenges of building a remote team?

Communication must be intentional and strategic, and camaraderie is tougher to build without in-person events and time.

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What did we forget to ask Andrew Jernigan?

At RemoteHabits we're always trying to improve our interviews, what question should we have asked Andrew Jernigan?


Andrew Jernigan

After years in brokering international insurance and travel assistance, Andrew is the CEO and one of the co-founders of Insured Nomads, an innovative insurance company providing stronger coverage for remote workers when traveling internationally. The need was for an option that provided better claims/customer service, higher levels of medical benefits, and cover for stolen personal equipment; all at a reasonable price. The culture of generosity that they developed is unprecedented through them being founded as a social impact venture with the global non-profit, Not For Sale. Insured Nomads is available through brokers and travel insurance sites, and has a referral program for remote workers that blog/publish content.

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