Monthly Archives: November 2016

Challenges in Hong Kong

So I left Europe for a few months and flew to Hong Kong. This sunset was the last I saw on my home continent for a long time

So I left Europe for a few months and flew to Hong Kong. This sunset was the last I saw on my home continent for a long time

Business challenges:
-My main source of leads dried out pretty badly for me. A good lesson of how relying on a single source of leads can be dangerous. However I believe good things can and will come out of it, within my circles we were always talking about how we need to get the heck out of freelancer sites.

Life challenges:
-I validated what I already knew. It is difficult to work from hostels where everyone around you has a travel mindset. I very much feel I don’t belong on these places anymore but I thought it would okay since at least this time I had offices that I could work from. However it is still challenging since I often need to work around normal hours (especially here in Asia!). I can’t really make it work, so I am heading to a hotel in just a few days.

Overall I feel damn great being here. This is the adventure I have been craving for and I feel that at least for now I am on the path that I should be on. And it is definitely a bit scary, the safe feeling thing would be to go back to university and study to have a degree but I don’t think about that anymore, in a sense you could look at it as burning the boats. I know I will be okay and I am really happy about the path that I am on.

Even if the work I do is not always necessarily the most fun but I aim to do it in a fun environment and in a fun way. But one thing that has kind of been creeping on me lately has been cash flow. I need to stop using my personal savings and get my cash flow in good order soon. It is easy to be comfortable when you have cash in the bank but the flip side of it is that you essentially have very little pressure to produce results.

Working from the 31st floor, overlooking the Hong Kong skyscrapers

Working from the 31st floor, overlooking the Hong Kong skyscrapers

Almost everyone needs people to push us forward and help us to be more accountable in our lives. When you know that you can always sell some stock and be okay it makes it feel like more of a hobby because you don’t need the results.

It might take you ten years to find your place in the business. In the mean
time you’ll have to find a way to pay the bills, and you’ll have
to do anything and everything you can to be around people
practicing your craft.
-Dustin Hoffman

The problem is that as an entrepreneur or a salesman you should need the results a little bit. You should have that fire under your ass that forces you to produce results, otherwise nobody does. And that little bit of extra pressure is often the one pushing you to do the little bit uncomfortable things: Charging what you’re worth, going for that sale one more time, closing harder, aiming to finish projects quicker. In general I see it as only a good thing.

20161117_222446_hdr

So, I think it is time to finally start paying myself a salary.
The problem is that both my living costs and the fixed costs of my business are pretty high at the moment and I am actually burning through more cash than I thought.

For a person who is traveling on short term the rent will always be a major expense.
And even in Manila I am expecting to pay around 800€ month for my total living expenses.

I have to go for something a little bit nicer since I need to have nightly salescalls from my apartment which means that I need to have a nice room with good soundproofing and a solid internet.

That’s why it looks like I am going to live in one of the famous skyscrapers of Manila. Right there in the heart of the city.

But I think the monthly expenses will be something like:
800€ for the flat – Including utilities, gym and pool.
600€ for food, drinks and going out.
300€ for transportation and airplane tickets.
200€ for other expenses.

That is already 1900€. And although I am living nicely, that is the living costs in one of the more cheaper cities.

20161119_084011So I guess we can conclude couple of things:
1st: If you live in a relatively wealthy country, you are unlikely to save a lot of money on rent by moving short term to a poor country because you need an upscale local apartment and upscale always costs money.
2nd: Setting up for short medium term is probably a lot smarter in terms of rental prices and hassle. With monthly deals you don’t have all that much negotiating power and its not worth your time to haggle endlessly.

But overall an entrepreneurs life shouldn’t be about worrying about costs and saving money on every turn. That will be poisonous to your mindset, it will make you think small and that small thinking will probably put a bit of a ceiling on your achievements.

Anyway in four days I am off to an actual hotel and can do sales calls and cold-contacting from there. Take care.

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