My journey started a little more than a month ago.
It was before the Coronavirus Lockdown happened. After having several months off work due to depression I took up the courage to hand my notice in and quit. I was only being paid statutory sick pay by my employer anyway by this time. I’m a trained bus driver with a degeneration of the spine, which when I drive certain buses I’m left in lots of pain. I’ve been looking to move over to coach driving as they are a more comfortable driving experience BUT, and I do use capitals, the Coronavirus hit and nobody is taking on coach drivers. Due to social distancing and now the lockdown people aren’t taking holidays and children aren’t going to school.
It is difficult for a bus driver or a coach driver to work from home, although many of my ex-colleagues have been put on furlough meaning that they are technically working from the comfort of their own sofa. They are working 3 weeks on and 3 weeks off to cover the limited services that are left in our area. This is to ensure that those who need to use public transport to get to an essential job can do so.
Ok, what has happened over this last month and a bit on my journey to entrepreneurship?
I’ve been looking for something that I could do to use skills that I already had to bolster our household income and to work from home, even before the Coronavirus Lockdown.
This isn’t my first time in working online – I worked with an entrepreneur as a facilitator. What’s one of those I hear you ask? Well, the chap I worked with had all the visions for where he wanted the business to go and I was the one who would turn these visions into reality. We used a certain funnel tool that allowed us to create a website which would be able to sell products but also have a membership area filled with information that our trainees and professionals would be able to use to promote their business. We also had an affiliate section that would allow those trainees and professionals to earn money from sales of the products from the company.
Sound too much like hard work or too technical, both physically and “jargony” for you? The thing is I’m a geek when it comes to technology, but I really am just a user. I’m not a programmer or a coder at all. I get lost when people talk about programming or coding just as much as any other layman. To build something though like a website that can serve as a steppingstone to wealth – insert evil laugh here! – that’s something that I can do. Ok, I need to have a little help with different packages and to have the basics covered and to have some training and, and, and . . . well you get my gist.
As I said I’ve been looking to use some of these skills that I’ve had just lying around in the back of “my ol’ noggin” that haven’t been getting used for a long while. Whilst I was watching a farming simulator video on YouTube – yes, I like simulator games, I had an advert pop up that caught my attention. It went along the lines of, “want to be able to sell anything online? If so, click here for a free training”. I thought yes, that will be a good piece of training so why not? I knew that my old skills were going to have a chance to have an airing and I would be able to have training to help me with the nitty gritty bits that I’ve either forgotten or never even knew.
So, I clicked the link and signed up to the free workshop on online selling. Through the videos I met an online guru, an online marketer, called Stuart Ross. He led me through a brief introduction to the company that he runs and how his company can help people get online to market either their own products or to become an affiliate marketer.
Off the back of what I learnt in the free workshop I decided to take the plunge and paid a small amount to find out more. I became a sponge for information about how to sell online. The essential package laid out the fundamentals of what I needed to do – I could build a website and then advertise my own products or find companies who provided affiliate links which I could market and then make money from, for example Amazon. Not FBA, if you know that terminology, “Fulfilled By Amazon”; which is sourcing products to sell on Amazon and have your warehouse send those items directly to Amazon for them to sell. They take a percentage of each sale, around 20%, to cover them dealing with the shipment to customer and any refunds if required. Amazon has an affiliate department that will pay a much smaller percentage to their affiliates than the 20% that they take from an FBA customer, but it is across all their products. Therefore, allowing you to earn from any sale that Amazon makes when using your affiliate link.
I could do all of these things if I wanted, using other website builder software, using free templates and using autoresponders to send out emails to leads and all of that sort of thing. Alternatively, I could take the next step where I would be able to tap further into Stuart’s company and use their knowledge and back end workshops and tools to build my own website and build a business that way.
Now here I am writing my first Blog to explain where I am up to in my journey.
I signed up to further grow myself within digital marketing and website building. To learn the skills and techniques to grow a business. The biggest thing that I found is that most of the building has been a building of myself – to grow from a broken person who left work as a bus driver – to someone who is now able to look for help with my depression. I now feel that I have got a direction that I can grow in as an entrepreneur. One who can defeat the lockdown enforced by Coronavirus and now become able to work from home to provide for my family in such a way that I would not have been able to do so before.
If you are reading this during the lockdown, please stay safe. Wash your hands with soap and maintain your social distancing restrictions. If you are reading this after the lockdown is over, be blessed that you’ve already made it through one of the most difficult times we have all been through in recent history.
If you’ve been inspired by my journey to start your own journey into entrepreneurship, please click here