What can a person do to make a difference in the world?
Lots of people I respect feel we need more entrepreneurs in our economy. Even … in the world economy. I’m with them. Look for problems no one else sees. Solve them. Sell the solution.
Recognize that good ideas have a shelf life. Be attuned to the time an idea goes stale; have another ready to develop. In your work life, be ready to move with the times.
By way of example: I started a company. It’s not a big deal. A lawyer and an accountant gave me advice on the legal structure I should adopt; I’ve received significant benefit from the investment. I’ve always admitted to anyone who asks that I’m not much the sales guy. It has always nagged at me: “If you don’t have all the parts of a company (marketing, sales, products, distribution, etc.), are you really a company?”
Another side of me always argued, “Doesn’t matter. You’re running your company. It doesn’t have to look like any other company in the world. Besides, for the product you’re selling, how would you effectively and cost-effectively market and sell?” Having no answer to that latter question, this side always won my internal debate.
I have since gotten some experience with “freelancing” on Elance.com. (Don’t follow me there; Upwork.com bought them and is consolidating their businesses to Upwork. If you’re interested, see Upwork.)
Here, it is pretty apparent how to market, sell, and do all other parts of the business cycle. And it is apparent that many actors are concentrating on small parts of the total and staying around. Hmmm … I think that spells opportunity. If I can do the whole package, I might have all the work I want. Cool!
If I go that direction, things will be very different.
Talk about competition! People from all over the world are offering jobs and bidding on jobs. I did a small job for a guy in Ohio. I competed for his attention with people from everywhere. I’m thankful he offered me the job. We did his work by collaboration over the web. He could have been anywhere. (In point of fact, he was on the road the whole time we worked.)
I could find myself working for firms in Bosnia, Egypt, China, India, Brazil, Europe, Canada, or the U.S. And all from the comfort of my home. With no commute! Sounds tempting!
I think you’ll see some changes on my web site and life in the coming months. I’m busy preparing. I’m still the same me. I intend to continue working in information technology. Otherwise, I have all options open. Maybe I’ll go back into office work and commuting again. Maybe I’ll work from home and all over the world at the same time!
Keep your options open. Be entrepreneurial! Do what you love to do.
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