Meesen Brown, Co-Founder of Behere
We are not sure how we stumbled upon Meesen, but we are so glad we did because after a few introduction emails back and forth, we finally spoke on the phone - she's in Thailand by the way, and shared so much synergy! We discussed our brands and expressed the importance of flexibility in our lives. Meesen, Co-founder of Behere, a company encouraging flexible living and shares you how to negotiate for that "remote" work. Read more to learn about how she started Behere and her thoughts on "work-life-balance"...and a little for thecnnekt community!
Meesen, as a young lady, what did you aspire to be and how did it steer you to being the boss you are today?
Ever since I was young, I dreamt of travel, of exploring new places and meeting new people. I never had one ‘dream job’ that I aspired for, but always had a deep pull towards making a positive difference in the world. I quickly learnt that if I couldn’t find the right job for me, I had to be creative and pave my own way to making positive impact. My desire for adventure, has shaped me into the boss I am by making me open to new ideas, people and cultures. The independence, connections and experiences I’ve had abroad have been some of my most valuable learnings.
When was that “ah-ha” moment to launch Behere and why do you feel there’s a need for a company such as yours in a world that we live in?
The "ah-ha" moment for Behere actually built up over time. As much as I loved the lifestyle and experiences that came with living abroad, figuring out the logistics of getting set up in a new city felt like a full-time job. I would lose my routine as I rushed from each hit-or-miss accommodation and workspace to another. I was assembling and reassembling the foundation of my life in each city, while trying to work. Not only that, but I had women reaching out all the time - “how are living like this, what are you doing, this is amazing, aren’t you worried about safety, making friends etc.”. I just knew that I had to get involved in making this lifestyle more possible and sustainable for women. I think now, more than ever, we need something like this.
Women are becoming fed up with toxic office environments, don’t resonate with the 9-5 work structure, and have a desire for more flexibility and travel, aspiring to create flexible lifestyles. Our mission is to support these women by providing an accessible service and like-minded community.
I know we talked about the impossible phrase “work and life balance”, but in your own words, how would you describe what that means to you as well as “flexibility”?
Ahh yes, work-life balance. It is a tricky phrase, I believe no such thing actually exists. Technology has changed how and where we work. We’re reading emails from bed, drafting proposals on trains, taking calls in cars. We’re digesting information constantly and work is always at our fingertips. It has become ‘work-life’ integration and figuring out how we can better make our work integrate with our lives, in a healthy way. With 50% of the American workforce expected to be working remotely by 2020, we see the need to find work-life integration that works for everyone.
Flexibility, is something that all employers need to adopt to maintain top talent and to help employees find work-life integration that works for them.
Flexibility should no longer be a perk, it needs to become a standard for how we work. Having flexibility in your life; whether it be to work from home, to take the afternoon off for an appointment, or to explore and experience new places, fulfilling your dreams and goals. Flexibility is the key to finding that work-life integration for you. Embracing flexibility gives women the opportunity to create lifestyles that better meet their needs and wants.
Why should you be stuck in a cubicle, emailing people across the hall, when you could be working from a cafe in Spain or answering emails from a workspace in Thailand? We know great work can be done from anywhere, and giving people the flexibility and freedom to follow their desires and do this, will reward companies exponentially.
In launching your business, can you disclose what has been a great challenge and what has been the most rewarding?
The greatest challenge has been being patient, and trusting the process. It’s been a constant learning experience and you realize that not everything you try will work, but it’s important to keep testing in order to know what does. The most rewarding has definitely been speaking with so many women who resonate with our mission and share that this is something they’ve been looking for. A way to finally make their dreams a reality, to fuel their passions and to feel inspired by their environments. It’s invigorating to know you’re making a difference and helping people pursue something they’ve dreamt about but never thought was possible. That we actually provide women with resources and tools to help negotiate remote work with their employer and transition into a new city is rewarding as well. Knowing we’re making a difference in women’s lives and helping them transition to a lifestyle that better fits them is fulfilling.
What is next for you and Behere?
Exciting things! I’m headed to Bali next month and back to Europe in the Spring. With Behere, we’ve just launched 6 cities in Southeast Asia and are expanding to more locations this year. Europe is really popular in Spring through Fall, so I’m excited to connect with all the women there and host some awesome events. This year, we’re expanding our events initiatives and will be hosting more in cities around the world. For any ladies interested in attending our events near you, (that range from women-only coworking spaces to coffee chats or wine nights) sign up here.
Special Promo for thecnnket members:
Behere is helping women thrive in flexible lifestyles and create a future of work that is more aligned with their wants and needs. We provide our users with a private apartment, workspace, gym & fitness class access, networking and community events in each city we’re in. We’re thrilled to extend a $200 discount to members of thecnnekt using referral code CNNEKT200. Apply here.
To learn more about Meesen and Behere, you can find helpful links here:
- Behere Website: www.gobehere.com
- Behere Instagram: www.instagram.com/gobehere
- Meesen Instagram: www.instagram.com/meesenb
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/gobehere
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/gobehere
Interviewed by Chary