Career Champion: “Putting plans into practice”


Sally Champion

Sally Champion continues her weekly blog about the process of setting up a part-time business as a writer. She had polio as a child and after years of working nine to five, she is now having to think differently about how to earn her living. Sally invites your comment and advice.

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Episode 10: “Putting plans into practice”

I’ve just finished the last week of the Be Your Own Boss course. I’ve come away with my questions answered, which reflects well on the quality of instruction I received.

After two weeks of intense concentration I’m feeling tired and emotional. The idea of putting recently acquired skills into practice, such as doing my own book keeping and marketing, doesn’t seem particularly alluring.

Instead I would like to take calls from people offering me work and decide what to accept and what to graciously refuse. I would like someone else to do the necessary calculations regarding my cash flow, ensure I don’t spend my tax money and then make sure it’s paid on time. I would also like this person to give me generous drawings so I can go out and spend them on frivolous necessities.

In short, tonight I feel like a big baby.

It’s not a comfortable feeling but it’s also not a feeling that’s completely foreign to me. I’m sure feeling like a big baby is probably the reduction necessary to imagine, once the feeling dissipates, that you are enjoying a period of tremendous personal growth.

Thanks to the content of the course I have just completed, I now at least have a methodology to engage with these presently distastefully viewed activities.

And engage with them I will.  I am presently devising a comprehensive plan of action. (Lists are good.)

During much of my life I have approached things in a lateral way. Often I haven’t been able to do things in the same way as other people and I’ve had to devise my own methods. That’s made me imaginative, creative and at times, I fear, unnecessarily perverse.

Approaching life sideways may have become something of a habit. Now though, I need to do certain things directly.

To me the Enterprise Allowance programme provided by Work and Income really sums up the best of our personal and institutional attributes.  I think it provides a wonderful opportunity for New Zealand and New Zealanders.

Kevin, our tutor on the course talked about the attributes shared by entrepreneurs. I worried because I didn’t identify with those particularly, but he also told us it’s the people who persevere who make it in business. That observation made me feel better because I’ve always had bucket loads of perseverance.

And action is the key.

Tonight before I go to bed I’ll start drawing up a list of the organisations I will approach for work. To work 20 hours a week and cover my expenses I need to target those organisations I think would pay my required hourly rate.

I’ll group them into two categories. Category A will be those about which I feel confident — because of the body of knowledge I already have, I can add value straight away. Category B will be those organisations I don’t know so much about.

Once I’ve done that I will schedule ringing the right people and follow that up by sending them some information about the services I offer.

Sally is happy to answer questions from readers about the course or the Enterprise Allowance programme.

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