《Hokkaido: the migrants’ choice – from Niseko》
From the town of Niseko in the Shiribeshi sub-prefecture, where many migrants gather, we introduce stories surrounding the ‘choices’ of people who decided to relocate.
《Hokkaido: the migrants’ choice – from Niseko》 ⑥ Returning to Kutchan in pursuit of the ideal way of working
Her luggage is still in her room. Takahashi Chisa (34) relocated to Kutchan in the Niseko region on November 12, last year.
That room is now her workplace. She is a web counsellor who uses the internet – linked to approximately 20 people throughout Japan, providing guidance on establishing businesses using social media, and work-life balance.
Until two months ago, she lived in Tokyo for two years. Before that, she lived in Kutchan. This time is an unusual ‘U-turn relocation’.
Chisa worked as a KLM Royal Dutch Airlines’ cabin attendant (CA) for eight years. She was contracted to fly approximately 3 flights a month. As a snowboard enthusiast, Chisa worked as a member of staff at an accommodation facility in the Niseko region from the winter season of 2013, doing both jobs simultaneously.
She was due to return home when the ski season ended, but stayed to live in Kutchan after hearing from a colleague who lived locally that “summer is better than winter”.
In 2018, Chisa’s CA contract ended but she wanted to continue her style of working freely while snowboarding. “I wanted to do a job I could do anywhere in the world.” Internet sales, yoga instructor … various choices came to mind but she chose to be a counsellor.
First of all, it is not easy to gather “customers”. For a stable business, in the end, personal connections are necessary. You have to publicize yourself to as many people as possible. “To create a successful private business, I had to go to Tokyo”.
In pursuit of a way of working freely, she went to Tokyo and studied hard to create new job foundations. Just as business started to take off, the spread of the coronavirus triggered yet another way of working. Until then, work was 50-50 face-to-face and online, but this soon changed to more online work.
Many people are dying and struggling around the world due to the coronavirus. Other people are also facing poverty. However, due to the pandemic, many jobs that used to be face-to-face are now being done remotely.
Now that remote work has become mainstream, you should be able to work in Niseko rather than Tokyo. The coronavirus pandemic has helped bring Chisa’s aim of working “anywhere in the world,” closer.
The desire to live in an abundant natural environment is something felt by many people. The expansion of the scope of remote working prompted by the Coronavirus is working to make the constrains of where you work and live, smaller. Behind one woman’s “U-turn relocation” is perhaps a glimpse of the new way of working post-coronavirus.