1st November 2012: 6 months after the start of my new life.
“How are you doing? How is business?”
This is the new frequently answer question.
I managed to convince more and more people that I’m an online entrepreneur.
For the ones asking details, I have this answer ready: “I’m working on different projects, one is a career website dedicated to International Development jobs… a job board for NGOs, non-profit and those kind of organizations…”.
I’m referring to AidBoard.com, the projects I dedicated more time in the last 3 months.
It’s a great experience, an endless learning opportunity and a source of satisfactions.
Like the message of gratitude I received by a person from Ivory Coast, that found a job thanks to the amazing services of AidBoard.
The last effort has been to start a blog section to help people in their job hunting.
I know little about International Development, but I understood that it’s a very hard sector to get in so I contacted some expert bloggers asking them to write guest posts for AidBoard. And the response has been pretty good!
And yes, some money are coming in too between paid sponsored job listings and advertising campaigns. My top customers is in Indonesia 🙂
Networking a bit in Amsterdam, I met very interesting people and started a collaboration with http://www.zinnigezaken.nl, “Meaningful Business”.
But let me tell you: this is not 4 hours work week.
It’s hard work, lots of e-mail contacts, building relationships online and offline.
So far has been pretty exciting so I don’t care about how much time it takes me.
On another note, my job boards in Latin America are being very difficult to grow as a business, even if they get an amazing traffic of 100.000+ visits a month!
It’s all part of the learning process, anyway.
My new mantra: more revenue streams
In “The Millionaire next Door“, a book that I recommend and that I enjoyed in form of audiobook the days after my knee operation while stuck in bed, there was this nice anecdote.
A professor once asked a group of sixty MBA students who were executives of public corporations this question:
“What is risk?”
One student replied:
“Being an entrepreneur!”
His fellow students agreed. Then the professor answered his own question with a quote from an entrepreneur:
“What is risk? Having one source of income.”
Due to the uncertainty factored in dropping a fat salary and starting a new business, I liked the idea to work on multiple revenue streams a lot.
So I came up with this terrible drawing.
I’m in the process to set everything in place, as some opportunities just came in this week.
Ah, and talking about opportunities, I got so many calls from recruiters offering me incredible jobs, but I turned all the offers down.
Calls were like:
Recruiter: “I saw your profile on <Monster or LinkedIN>, what is your current situation?”
Me: “I quit 6 months ago, starting my own bla bs bla…”
Recruiter: “Great! I have a super-duper job opportunity for a top customer in the <anything> sector! They’re looking for a <fill in a techie title>, interested?”
Daniele: “Is it a short term engagement?”
Recruiter: “No! It’s a great opportunity for a permanent contract!”
How much do 6 months cost?
I don’t normally share my financial details, and I won’t do it now either.
But I’m keeping my finances under control, mixing good frugality with dedicating some time to money management.
So, how much did I spent in 6 months filled with business experiments, a trip to Canada, a van trip down to Italy, living in expensive Amsterdam?
Actually, my asset increased since “Daniele stopped working”, like my father says.
Thanks to the last company fat salary including holidays, a generous refund by the tax office for an overpaid 2011 (I paid taxes over 12 months, but I worked 9 because of my Salsa WalkAbout), some good investments and some drops of magic.
I had to re-check the calculation 3 times to believe it myself!
But this made me realize that… I’m not investing enough in what I’m doing! Now is the time to put some money in my projects….
…and the ugly.
Everything is exciting, but not everything is “happy”.
Just stopped the relationship with the most important person of my last… 33 years?
It hurts, but we both know it was the right thing to do.
And you, what are you up to? (hint: leave a comment)