Tag Archives: social enterprise

Impatience!

8 Sep

Hi all,

This is going to be more of a frustrated rant more than a piece of writing that will add any value to the lives of people reading this..unless they like to oversee a good old rant!

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For the last three days I’ve been mainly confined to my bedroom with boxes of orange juice and tissues. I complained yesterday to my girlfriend that I’d been out of work for the last two days..she patiently explained to me that it is what a lot of people tend to call a ‘weekend’.

Anyway it’s now Monday and I plan to be back into the office tomorrow..taking it slightly easier from now on so I stop running myself into the ground like this every few months.

In bed today I’ve been watching a few documentaries on start-ups:

Nothing to lose – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4g_Hq2pwao
Start up kids – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2279353/

 

During the second of these I began to feel a building frustration and impatience. I think it’s a feeling I’ve been keeping down for a long time. After a year now it’s starting to rise. I keep feeling like I’m playing a game on a really old computer with slow internet…whenever I press a button (or make a business/product decision) I have to wait weeks, or months for the result.

This is the painful part of having a startup where you are having to bootstrap and cannot create the product yourself..you must wait. And it sucks.

The way I’m trying to remedy this is by focusing on preparing the next steps – i.e. the next product development costs, monetisation strategies.

I’ve also started working on an online course – ’30 days of mental well-being’ – publishing on Udemy. This is probably what made me ill – I set a deadline of two months to complete the course and man has it been hard – creating lecture slides, recording audio’s, video instructions, interviews, quizzes, and text. It was all going well, and ahead of schedule and then I realised that my microphone had malfunctioned in recording 13 of the lectures! That made me really angry with myself. So I’ve taken these sick days to not think about it and try and come back to it tomorrow with a fresh head. I hope some of you guys will check it out when it’s ready! I’ll be posting it on my website – http://www.rizenow.com.

Speaking of the website – I decided to describe my personal journey from depression to start up in  video on my website, so feel free to take a look 🙂

 

So how about all of you…anyone else find similarmfrustrations in their work/relationships/lives?

 

 

 

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Milestone snapshots!

28 Jun

I think today is a good day to take stock. It’s already been a rollercoaster ride of waking up with the birds, going to sleep with the bats, and even .. a day off along the way (dun dun duuunn!).

I’ve been running the motor pretty close to overheating, and I’ll be taking a four day holiday next week. I feel, with what I have achieved in this week especially that I put a flag in here and celebrate what successes I have made and how I’ve gotten here.

 

First off – I am now officially a MANAGING DIRECTOR peoplee! I got my certification of incorporation of a private limited company today – BlueSkies Collaboration Limited (http://blueskiesc.co.uk/). For me this is definitely a milestone moment, and something I will keep with me for a long time.
To be honest this doesn’t really affect how the enterprise will work compared to before, except people who might want to support BSc Ltd in the future will be able to make sure we’re a registered company.

 

For BlueSkies I held the second event. I have had a HUGE influx of conservation organisations from abroad get in touch and request support from BSc. The problem I’ve faced recently is getting people in Cambridge to want to come to the events I hold. The second event I held yesterday included myself and one other special person in a cafe.

At the beginning stages I really don’t see a low attendance as a failure; everything is a learning curve right now! I’ve learned I need to develop my own confidence in BSc so that I can start inviting people outside of my social circles of conservation, and really aim high for the events. I feel like after three events (one more) I’ll be confident to start approaching the Directors of organisations and talk to them about them, and their staff attending.

In order to do some networking I attended the Cambridge Conservation Forum Summer Symposium – there was a lot of opportunity to meet new professionals, and get my flashy new business cards out! All in all i enjoyed the symposium, but as is with Cambridge sometimes there’s a lot of talking, and then talking about action, and then a wine reception. Sometimes I find this really frustrating, but what can I do? What can we all do when people just talking annoys us? we can either 1) call them out and/or 2) act ourselves and lead by example.

 

Now for the other projects – Music.

I have been cold calling the sh*t out of Cambridge pubs and bars. I’ve had so many no’s now I was starting to wonder if I should stop trying but finally yes’s are starting to leak through. It’s a very low percentage, but I’ve already got five gigs lined up in the Cambridge area for my acoustic stuff; one of which I already performed and have been asked to come back again soon! So, true to my last post, the success here has lied in two things – Persistance, and also Preparation – to prepare for the cold calling I made sure I had done a few radio performances so the general public were talking about me more, and I put some new songs of mine online so pubs and bars could check out what I was offering with maximum ease. All I could have done better is if I had have brought round a CD of my music for them to listen to, or literally have gone round with my guitar and shown them first hand! 😀

 

As for the Game project – after months of trying to recruit a programmer who will work for free (a share of the final profits instead of paid by the hour) I’ve had a number of positive responses from people wanting to get involved. I actually stood one of them up for a meeting yesterday evening because I fell asleep (DOH!), but one guy said he’d like to do the project to expand his portfolio. I’ve also been trying to get a mental health professional on board so we can make this game really effective; I had a very constructive talk with one such guy today, who seems again interested in being part of the team. So maybe in two weeks I’ll actually have the full team recruited to make this product, and get it out to market by the Autumn!!

Finally the app – our programmer has all the updates on IOS7 and we will be constructing it properly when I get back from holiday.

 

So this week – it has been very tough. Now that all four projects are developing and I’m having to arrange meetings day and night for all of them. Along with gigging to pay rent it means I’m left feeling pretty stretched! It may mean as these four projects develop I have to give one up for someone else to run, or become much better at prioritising. This is especially true with emails – I need to have a forwarding system so that I have different folders in which to categorise things. At the moment having 100 emails to just sift through and reply to does not work! I’ll let you all know if I find a useful way of doing this.

Tonight I’m going to the first part of a three day workshop at the Entrepreneurial department of Cambridge University business school. It’s going to be intensive but I’m sure I’ll get a lot out of it. Come Monday I’ll be writing a full piece on how it went.

 

What are the main points of this article? – First of all I’m lathering up my own ego with oodles of well done sauce.

Secondly is to allow those who have been reading for a while to see the progression that has come to my projects through consistent hard work and persistence so far – paying rent through the music, registered company – being contacted for help by so conservation organisations ranging over seven different countries. I have almost recruited two full teams of people without spending or offering a single penny from my account. I’ve shared my vision, and brought together people who believe in it enough to dedicate their time for free! 

— All of this is not because I’m especially good at any skills required to do this. If anything I’m probably making more mistakes than the average person. If I can acheive these things you all can too if you ever choose to take the dive.

 

Thirdly I’m starting to learn – don’t push yourself beyond your limits. Try to stick to a handful of projects that you believe in – if I had any more than 4 I’d already have burned out completely. Stay focused on the aspirations you have closest to you, and don’t stretch yourself too thin!!

Happy condensing!