Today, October 28th, 2013, marks the 15 year anniversary of the day I dove head first into self-employment. A month after Google was started. I remember I had just finished getting Microsoft certified and a friend’s Mom called me asking for computer help. I went to her office, helped her out with a few things and my computer consulting career was born.
I would consider myself a fairly shy guy, but as the years rolled on, I began to break out of that shell and eventually built a solo career servicing over 50 small businesses and about 150 residential clients. It wasn’t easy. I was horrible at door-to-door and cold calling. In the end, my best asset was my website. I built it so that the site would be my salesperson and I just needed to convert the leads.
14 Years Later – I Sold My Business
In March of 2012, with my business and website at a peak, I sold the business to pursue other ventures. I had been doing the consulting thing for 14 years and it was just time to move on. The biggest problem I had with the business was the lack of vacation time. In 14 years, I think I took 3 vacations longer that 5 days. I couldn’t leave Houston often because I was worried my clients would have an emergency while I was sipping on a margarita in Mexico.
Since selling my computer consulting business, I have focused on building a new online business which should allow me to work from any location. With this business, I am less concerned with how much money I make and more interested in finding fun stuff to do with my free time. This business model will eventually allow me to travel and work from the road, but it hasn’t been easy. Pulling money out of thin cyberspace takes some determination, time and effort.
A Better Approach to Working on the Road
My plan is to travel and work from the road in my RV. I figured I would need to be making a certain amount of money per month and have a good emergency fund before I hit the road. Recently, I discovered a blog by Becky called Interstellar Orchard or IO for short. She is 29, travels in her RV solo and finds work while out on the road. She plans her next gig months in advance (usually) and many of these gigs pay for her RV spot.
Becky’s approach to the travel/money issue is a fantastic concept for the full-time traveler needing to still make money while on the road. Right now, Becky and others are starting work for the Amazon Camperforce.
This got me to thinking. If I had my RV and I was in the area for one of these Camperforce jobs, would I be qualified to work at one of these locations? Well, I have 14 years of computer consulting experience which wouldn’t help. Hmmm….I’m a self-proclaimed professional blogger and internet marketer….no help.
If I want to qualify for some of these jobs on the road, I had better get some experience on my resume. Sure I made $75/hour as a computer consultant and these jobs would only pay $10-$12 per hour, but I wouldn’t have the stress of 500 employees griping at me when a server goes down. Less Responsibility = Less $$ but a smart person learns to cut out unnecessary expenses and lives on less more comfortably.
Although these retail and warehouse jobs might be physically demanding, I would think I could still run my blogging/writing/IM business on the side so that I would have more sources of income while on the road.
So, thanks to Becky and others, I think I will diversify my resume a bit over the winter, and prepare for my launch of the RV lifestyle on or before my birthday in June 2014. Hopefully, way before June.
Thanks for reading. How do you make money on the road? Let me know in the comments below. I would love to hear your ideas.