An entrepreneur on a journey of discovery

Monday, July 23, 2007

I'm an unfaithful man

It's been way too long since I last posted on my Blogger account. It isn't because I'm lazy, it's because I've been cheating! My posts have been the sole property of Wibble for the last while and the way the site is growing, they're going to stay there! Sorry guys, my new love is too powerful to resist :)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

London calling

So last week I had a rant about not getting to enjoy my public holidays because of London based clients who don't always share the same holidays as us South Africans. Well there is an upside, and it's a great upside - trips to London!

I've been invited over to an event in London by one of my UK based clients and that means a few days of R&R with the family over there - lovely. The best part of the trip is that the event I've been invited to is a clients birthday party so it isn't all work. When the invite hit my inbox it made me realise just how important it is to have close client relationships. We have only ever met once and have developed the relationship over the last two years simply by working on projects together 6000 miles apart.

Relationships like this are invaluable in keeping a business strong!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Public holidays are a drag!

Public holidays are supposed to be fun relaxing days off work where you can undertake the random arbitrary household projects that you have been putting off - things like watering the garden and washing the dogs. That's what they are supposed to be, but they aren't.

Being self employed changes many things in your life, one of the most painful is public holidays. Half of my clients are based in the UK and the other half based in SA. Therefore any SA public holiday that isn't a holiday in the UK means work as usual, and visa versa. I would be highly upset if it wasn't for the fact that my UK clients pay me in GBP which does ease the sting a little, but it is still quite frustrating.

If you are going to start your own business, just realise that there are more hidden pains than you think. For those of you who did take the public holidays, I'm very jealous!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Customer service language

Customer service talk translation

It's company policy - I have no actual reason why it happened
We'll look into it - Give me some time to find an excuse
It's in the contract - I'm making up small print on the fly
Are you sure? - You liar!
You must speak to someone else - I'm about to hang up
Who did you speak to? - I know you don't remember
We'll call you back - Go fuck yourself

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The property decision is looming

Our little company is in the middle of a very big decision. We are growing and need offices - so what do we do?

There are 3 viable choices:
1. Rent office space
2. Buy commercial office space
3. Buy a house and use as offices

The problem is trying to work out which one is best. They all have pro's & con's but each seems to have a con that turns me off enough leaving me in no decision hell. Here is a basic intro into each...

Rent office space:
Pro: Relatively cheap compared to buying
Con: Zero investment in property. You're paying someone else's bond

Buy commercial office space:
Pro: It's an investment and this area of the property market is set to boom
Con: You have to pay a min of 15% deposit and the bond is 10 years not 20 (ouch!)

Buy a house and use as offices
Pro: Affordable compared to buying offices
Con: Transfer and legal fees will be more than a years rent under option 1. It's like burning money.

So this is where we are stuck. At this stage any decision will be a good one, even if it's wrong. I'm so stuck with which option is best that I'm happy to make a wrong decision because at least I'll then know and can take it off the list!


Friday, April 13, 2007

Time to let go

So, something on the light side of life. A while back we found a wind tunnel in Midrand and gave it bash. This is a small clip of one of the better parts.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Creativity from the masses

I'm not generally classified as a creative person (although I'm left handed), but I do have my moments every now and then. My irritation is that they mostly go to waste. If I think of a cool advert idea for BMW or a funky event idea for Addidas there is nothing I can do except forget the idea.

Instead of creativity for the masses, how about creativity from the masses?

I wonder how receptive companies would be to people sending through their creative ideas/concepts. Some may be happy but I don't know any that would know how to handle such input. And where do we send them?

Now if there was a portal where anyone could load an idea for a company within a specific category my bet is it would be used a lot. The companies can subscribe and get notified of new ideas pertaining to them and if they like and implement the idea then they can give a small cut to the creative originator.

My next venture? Who knows! :)