Changes coming – my future being planned

Changes coming - my future being planned

Consider this post a message to myself with you guys being interested parties.

***

Where to now?

It’s a question that I keep asking myself. My eyes are recovering well and the future beckons. But which future?

A long time ago, back in the mid-1980s, my rich uncle visited Australia. He was a man who had started his career as a butcher’s boy and ended up on the Board of Directors of one of Europe’s largest companies. Given that I grew up poor, such a visit was quite exciting. (Yes – there was vast diversity between the relative career successes of the generation above me).

This particular uncle was a very charismatic individual. We met in a city restaurant (I was a young office clerk at the time) and immediately the waiters started hovering around him. They could sense his influence.

We chatted. All the time he was appraising me. Mum was excited. She worshipped this particular brother of hers as someone who understood the key to success. I think that she hoped that he would pass this onto me. Instead he fixed me with his calm stare and told me that I will never succeed.

Huh?!?

“Too unfocused. Too interested in too many things.”

Ah,

Yes.

True.

That’s me alright.

Three decades later and I made it to being Information Services Manager for the New South Wales Audit Office (the Office of the Auditor General). Perhaps not as successful as my uncle, but moderate success nevertheless.

But he was right about one thing: I am interested in everything. I was then. I am now.

In some ways it is good. My knowledge is broad. I can legitimately boast university-level qualifications that include the following topics: Medieval History, Modern Australian History, Computer programming, English language, Management, Secondary Education, Philosophy, Artificial Intelligence, Economics, Marketing, Accounting, Supply Chain Management, Statistics. I’ve had two text-books on management published. I can paint oil paintings and also create digital art. I’ve played bass guitar in a band, acted and sung in front of audiences as part of an amateur theatrical group. I’ve also travelled a lot.  All because I find everything interesting.

But this fondness of everything is bad too. I admit that I am a bit of a butterfly brain. No single thing is my passion and so at no single thing do I excel.

I am also in my 50s. People usually take me for a decade younger. This is mostly because my hair is full and without grays. Perhaps also because of my continued juvenile joy of life. I laugh a lot. I joke a lot. Nevertheless, Australian workplaces do not favour recruiting people over that magic half-century.

And finally, I am obese. We all know the general stereotype – fat people are lazy. While empirical evidence (multiple university degrees all completed part-time alongside a successful career etc) would seem to contradict this in reference to myself, I still find myself battling the preconceptions of others.

So taking this self-assessment into account I need to design my future. I need to determine how I can earn an income for the rest of my life.

Hmmmmmm.

A business is the only answer.

Forgive me if I am slow. I’ve had both a counsellor and a university lecturer tell me to start up a business. “You’re so talented”, they’ve said.

Ah, but they don’t understand my risk aversion.

Now there is no job to prevent me taking that risk.

So what can I do as a business?

How about market my particular combination of skills?

Yep.

So over coming weeks I will start transforming this site (again!) into one that will be the basis of what I am tentatively calling Greole Digital Insights. My core service will revolve around extracting meaningful information from business systems in a format that is easy to understand (basically my job on-and-off for three decades). I will also design business presentations with associated graphics (something I’ve done a lot of in the past). Then, as auxiliary strands of the business, I will build and sell 3D models and artwork. I am also considering teaching at the local community college. Perhaps I could also sell specialist short computer courses to local schools. All these things bring me fulfilment (and hopefully money). I envision my primary consumers to be small to mid-sized businesses that need good business reporting but cannot afford a dedicated resource.

Anyway, this is my musing to myself. I’ve shared it with you all because I will take you on this journey will me. My blog will require rethinking. I still want to write my travel stories and things such as that. But I also want to write business oriented articles. So I will examine magazine or newspaper themes and see which ones permit different columns on the front page. Any advice appreciated. :)

The novel writing will continue too. Don’t worry about that. :)

Thanks for dropping by and reading. :)

Greg

 

8 Comments


  1. Good luck Greg. I’ve already decided that, for the sake of my health and sanity, I need to quit teaching next year at 55. So, I’ll be embarking on the same journey just a little after you.
    Dale


    1. Thanks Dale :) Where have the years gone?!? As much as I feel that it will be a scary journey, I am also hoping that it will be an exciting and interesting one. :) Hope it will be for you too :)

      Greg


  2. Sounds like a solid plan! Wishing you lots of success and let any bureaucratic obstacles in your way shatter =)


    1. Thanks my friend :)

      I will endeavour to shatter away :)

      Greg


  3. Perhaps you need multiple blogs – one for the business stuff, one for all the other gazillion things you’re interested in…..
    (And no, I’ve not been particularly ignoring you, just you haven’t been getting to the top of the reader too often, so I missed you.)


    1. Thanks for the suggestion :) I thought about multiple blogs but ended up rejecting the idea. I thought “what am I offering potential clients?” The answer is my combination of skills and knowledge. Then I thought “what things would I enjoy doing for work?” The answer was anything to do with my gazillion interests. :) I also want to differentiate myself from the “suits” who are currently dominating the business world (at least the business world as I have experienced it). I was at a prospective client a few days back. They had been sold a system by just such a “suit”. He had looked professional and said all the things that inspire confidence in people, but as I chatted I discovered that he had shown little interest in understanding their business or their needs. Hence the poor fit in the system. I intend to be different and am already learning their business in order to fix the problem.

      I guess I want to be the “Columbo” or “Jonathan Creek” of my industry: a quirky guy with non-traditional thinking who cares about his clients and solves their issues. I want to offer a very broad range of services covering all my interests. And hopefully this strange site of mine can sell me :)

      I must admit that I am not on much. That’s been due to a number of issues. Before the redundancy I used to spend 2 hours a day sitting on a train. That was my WordPress and reading time. That’s vanished now as my wife has turned it into our outing-to-a-café time and lets-go-shopping time. My eye problems have also limited the time I can spend on a PC, though that is mending itself (thank goodness because my business will rely upon that).

      Anyway, slowly I am returning and I look forward to seeing much more of you :)

      Greg


      1. Ah – another Columbo fan. We have much in common it seems. Johnathan Creek I have not heard of. Some cultural differences I guess…. Yes – the ‘listening salesperson’ is a great angle to market yourself.


        1. :) Thanks :) I’ve spent a few days now customising the site. And you should try and find some Jonathan Creek, especially the first few seasons. It’s an English show. The title character is a guy who works for a stage magician, developing the technical slight of hand behind the “magic”. As such he finds himself helping a female journalist to solve “impossible” murder mysteries. It’s very quirky.

Comments are closed.