You Are Your Best Asset

When you’re self-employed, everything depends on you, so you need to take care of yourself. You are the entire workforce from the janitor all the way up through every level to the CEO. You’re the human resources department, the marketing team and customer service. You’re all of it, so don’t work so hard that you burn out.

That’s pretty much the entirety of what I wanted to talk about today, but I’m going to elaborate anyway. When I started doing Odd-Job work, my entire body would hurt after just two hours of pulling up weeds and planting. I knew though that it was just because I wasn’t used to the work though, and I pushed through it. I knew that as my work load gradually increased, I would become fitter and better able to handle it.

I was right, but only because I made sure that I took a break when my body needed it and got plenty of sleep when I got home. I had to treat it like a workout at the gym. Plenty of protein in my diet to help my muscles build up, and staying hydrated while on the job. Clients often help with this last part by offering a cup of tea!

If the clients are pushing you to work harder, or to put more hours in than you can manage, you have to say, ‘no’. If they can’t handle that, they may threaten to give the job to someone else. Let them. There’s plenty of work to go around, and your mental health is just as important as your physical wellbeing. They can go be a bully to someone else.

You’re going to need to take time off occasionally. When you’re helping lots of people, you’re going to catch a few bugs. Especially if weather is warm and damp. Which it has been recently here in Wales. I’ve had to take over a week off to really get over the infection. It can be difficult when your income is so directly dependent on working to give yourself the time you need without feeling guilty, but you have to be kind to yourself.

You don’t necessarily have to be physically ill either. You might just be having a bad day emotionally, for whatever reason, and just need to take a personal day. Luckily for me, most of the time when I’m having a bad day, it’s raining too much to do any gardening work anyway, and since gardening is mostly what people ask me to do, rainy days usually give me a day off anyway.

Hopefully you won’t be taking time off for an injury. You need to be safe at work, which is part of the reason you shouldn’t be working while feeling sick. Feeling ill affects your focus and concentration, making it much easier to hurt yourself, and if you hurt yourself badly enough, you might never be able to work again. Be careful.

I’m not trying to scare you off. I’m saying you should go for it. Go do the thing and push yourself to work at it even harder. Just also be aware that you’re not a disposable member of the workforce. You’re the ONLY member of the workforce, and you need to take care of yourself.

I personally recommend working no more than 30 hours per week, giving yourself weekends off, and making sure you take breaks every two hours, including an hour for lunch. It also helps if you’re putting a little of your money away so that you can take days off without hurting too badly financially.

If you push yourself too hard and find yourself working too many hours for too little money, then you may as well be working for a company, instead of yourself. If being self-employed isn’t giving you a better life than working for an employer, then you need to take a look at how you’re treating yourself, and maybe your client list, and then make some changes.

I hope this has been helpful. If you need more detailed and specific advice, just ask me. Have a great day.

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First Steps

Since I’m not well enough to work right now, it seems like the ideal time to write the article that has been swimming around my brain a while. However, my brain is, itself, swimming in snot so this may end up being utter nonsense. Here goes.

I’ve been thinking about three topics that I was going to discuss in details in three separate articles, and I wasn’t sure which should be discussed first. However, I think I’ll worry about that later and for now cover the basics of all three topics in this one article. Maybe I’ll even leave it up to you, the reader, to determine what I write about next.

I’d love there to be more odd-jobbers out there, like myself, helping people do the small gardening and home improvement jobs that they can no longer do themselves, but odd-jobbing isn’t for everyone, and there may not be enough demand for it where you live to earn a sustainable income from it, which is why I think the best place to start after you’ve decided that you want to be self-employed is figuring out what you’ll be doing.

The best way to do this is to ask around. Ask people in your community what it is they feel is needed. One of the easiest ways to do this, if you have the opportunity, is to pay attention to local online noticeboard groups. Not every community does it, but you may find, after a quick search on Facebook, that there is at least one Group or Page dedicated to local news, events, and requests.

In my case I found that a lot of people in my area were asking for help with small jobs, but you may find that the people in your town are frequently asking for pet-sitting/walking services, cleaners, carers, piano tutors, math tutors, children’s entertainers or tax accountants. See what opportunities are available, and, if any of them take you fancy, reply that you are willing and able to help.

If you don’t find anything you can do locally, and you’re willing and able to deliver your products and services to anywhere, then spread your online search further afield to see what people in your field of expertise/experience are clamouring for.

Now, there’s a good chance that you won’t be qualified for some of the opportunities available. For example, perhaps you don’t have a degree in accounting, but you do know your way around a tax form. It’s okay to let your potential client know this. Most of the time they can’t afford a ‘professional’, and they don’t really need one. If the job is something they used to do themselves, they may even be able to teach you a thing or two.

I’ve already begun telling you about the next topic. How to find clients. I’ve got most of mine online to begin with, and then from word-of-mouth recommendations after that. I also got one or two from posters I put up in places I expected potential clients to go. I also hung out at the local ‘community hub’ to introduce myself in person while I was between jobs.

Participating in community events and projects will also help you get noticed.

The best way to get clients by far is by word of mouth recommendation, so when you’re doing a job, it helps to bear in mind that you’re also the best form of advertising for your business that you can get. You need to make a great impression, and maintain it. However, you also need to be honest, and be yourself. Some people have the knack to charm people, others, like myself had to learn it. However, it’s going to take more than one article to explore that topic.

The third topic I wanted to mention was money, specifically how much you need to charge. I actually hadn’t figured this out when I started. I knew I wanted it to be more that minimum wage, but I didn’t know what people would be willing to pay. I hoped that people would see my work and pay what they thought it was worth. It turns out that people like to have a number. Your best clients will be the ones that think the work is worth more than you’re asking.

Now, as your own boss, you need to pay yourself a fair wage for the work you’re doing. Ideally it needs to be enough to cover all your expenses even this is your only job. Also, you need to reach the target with just 20 hours per week (or less). As the word spreads and your reputation grows, you should be working more hours than that, but when you’re starting out, it may be a struggle to get that much.

Add up all your monthly expenses, for the whole household, for the year. Monthly expenses rarely include clothes shopping trips and things like car repairs, and you may have to guess how much unexpected expenses will cost you. The more thorough you are, the better, but even a best guess will give you a starting point. You can adjust later if necessary.

It may be mind numbing, but it will be worth it.

Once you have your grand total, subtract any other sources of income you may have (like a spouses, or a part-time job you’ve been doing) to see how much of the grand total you still need to make up. Divide that number by 52 (the number of weeks in the year) to see how much you need to reach per week, and again by 20 hours per week to see how much you should be charging per hour to cover these expenses.

If the amount you have left seems unreasonable, feel free to do the calculations again, and see what you can sacrifice, at least until you get more hours. I myself like to buy games, but I had to put that on hold until the basics were covered. For you it might be cigarettes, or your favourite fast food. Hopefully you won’t have to do without it for long.

Doing this will also show you how insufficient minimum wage jobs really are. Particularly if you don’t have 20 hours spare between caring for children/ other family members and that part-time job you’re doing. You may have to quit that part time job once your own business succeeds. As much as you may like it, you may start to resent how little it pays. Sorry about that.

If you feel tempted to discount your hourly rates to even less, bear in mind you’ll need to work more hours to cover your expenses. One of the biggest mistakes that new businesses make is undervaluing their time and their products. A high price suggests quality, and a low price suggests the opposite. You may surprise yourself to see what people are willing to pay for a good job well done, even if you’re telling yourself you could have done better.

There will be some clients that think you’re charging too much. Some will will insist on getting a flat-rate quote instead of charging by the hour. Be wary of clients like this and replace them with others who like what you do and are happy to pay what you ask (or more) as soon as you can. However, particularly if you’re making products, you may want to offer a price for each item, or project, rather than charge by the hour.

You still need to take into account how much time it will take you to complete the project/product, as well as any materials used. If it will take you six hours, then the client will need to pay you for six hours work, plus the cost to replace any materials you’ve used. Even if you had everything you needed laying around, you will need to buy more for the next one, and the cost should be included in the products price. As does the cost of any ‘free samples’ you’re handing out.

If you can make it and people want it, then do it. 🙂

It’s going to be a struggle at first, but once people start praising you to others, you should be able to cover all of your basic needs, as well as save up for holidays and treat yourself to the occasional fancy meal, expensive gadget, or snazzy new outfit. Though you may find that the first things you spend the ‘extra’ money on is more tools and marketing for your business.

I hope this advice has been useful. Feel free to ask me questions. I’ll be happy to explain anything in more detail, or discuss your particular situation and how you can still be successful despite your personal obstacles. For the moment this is all free because I’m figuring out how to teach all this as I go and your feedback will help me improve my coaching methods and advice.

Thank you for reading, liking and sharing, and have a great day 🙂

Tool Foolery

When you’re first starting out as an odd-jobber, you’re unlikely to have a lot of tools. Not unless you had some money put aside to invest in new business ventures. You’re going to have to build up your arsenal a little at as time, as and when you can afford it. The type of work your getting, and the problems you find keep coming up, will help you figure out what you need to buy at the time.

Having said that, if you can afford to invest a little money into buying tools before you start though, it will definitely help avoid embarrassment when a client’s tool breaks while you’re using it. Look after client tools as well as you can, but sometimes they just break.

It might be because it was a cheaply made tool only meant for light work, and the work that needs doing is too much for it, but sometimes your client won’t share this opinion, and just sees that you broke their stuff. If at all possible, avoid working for clients that jump straight to accusing you of deliberate misuse. Keep the clients that are more worried about whether or not you hurt yourself when the tool broke.

If at all possible, have the right tool for the job before you start. If the right tools aren’t available, or you’re not sure, it’s a good idea to manage the client’s expectations beforehand. “It looks like the ground is really hard. We could use the fork and spade, but it’ll take a while. A mattock would be better if you have one.” for example.

This also helps with under-promising and over-delivering. If you tell the client that it’s going to take a while, but then do the job well in less time than they expected, they’ll be a lot happier than if you say, “No problem. I’ll have it done in a jiffy”. Chances are, you’re going to come across some issues you didn’t anticipate. Don’t be afraid to undersell yourself, then allow your actions to speak louder than your words.

Back to tools. Chances are, when you’re first starting out you’ll have very few of your own tools. You may not know enough about DIY and Gardening to know whether or not the tools provided are going to be good enough. You’ll just have to take care, and be willing to learn.

Chances are, you’ll be working for people that used to be able to maintain their home and garden themselves. They have all the tools, and the knowhow, but their body is letting them down. Make sure they know that you’re new to this work, but you are willing clay, and let them teach you.

Sometimes the client may not know much themselves, having always relied on a late partner or other handy-folk. Luckily, you can make use of the internet to search for how-to guides and videos for nearly everything you’ll be asked to do. You can also ask friends and relatives that have done Gardening and DIY themselves, including me. I’ll be happy to help anyway I can.

Don’t beat yourself up for not knowing how to do everything already, or for not having all the tools necessary for every job. I started with only the experience I’d gained from helping my parents and having (briefly) been a homeowner myself. You’ll learn a lot, very quickly, and before you know it you’ll be able to make suggestions about how best to tackle the job.

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More Odd-Jobbers Needed!

The blog is in a bit of a mess right now. It used to be my writing blog, where I talked about whatever was on my mind, kept my audience up to date with my work-in-progress, and (eventually) promoted my upcoming books. My writing career fell flat on it’s face when I realised it was a bad business model, and found myself doing odd jobs for money instead.

I then thought I could use the blog to showcase some of the work I’ve done for people, and perhaps increase my client base as a result. This turned out to be unnecessary as word spread quickly, and I found myself too busy to maintain the blog at all. There are still more people asking for help with simple little jobs. More than enough to go around, if you’d like to become an odd-jobber too. I’d be happy to help you do it too.

I don’t have a background in the trades. Both my father and my grandfather were tradesmen though, as well as a couple of my friends. I used to help my Dad with projects around the house, and did more for myself when I had a house of my own. My previous career falls mostly into the retail, customer service, and hospitality fields. I’ve also studied business and management, personal development and entrepreneurship.

I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a business of my own for some time, and had a few false starts along the way. When I moved to Kidwelly, joined the local noticeboard groups on Facebook, and saw how often the locals were asking for help with small jobs, I saw this as my opportunity. I didn’t know at the time it would be as successful as it’s become. I just thought it would give me some pocket money while I figured came up with something better.

I found the work enormously rewarding, and I doubt I could ever be happy in a ‘regular’ job again now. Many of my clients are elderly or have mobility problems, or both. They often used to do jobs like this themselves, but can’t anymore, and they appreciate having someone around to help. You’ll often learn a lot from these people. Others just don’t have the time, or the confidence, to do it themselves, and are thoroughly grateful for lightening their stressful workload.

At this point I often have people contacting me directly to have me do things for them, and there are still more on the Kidwelly community noticeboard groups. I want to help everyone, but I can’t do it alone. Having more people join the odd-job squad and take on the work that I can’t get to myself would be wonderful. Like I mentioned earlier, I’d be more than happy to help you establish yourself and be as successful as I am, by offering tips and advice through this blog, and even via messenger.

For example: One of the easiest ways to impress a new client, is simply by showing up on time, or even a few minutes early. It never hurts to give yourself extra time to find a new location. It’s important to make sure, when setting appointments, that you allow enough time to travel, and to relax a little before you go do another job. Some of them can be tiring and hard work.

Here’s another quick tip for you that ties into the first. Underpromise, and over-deliver. If you’re not sure how to do something, tell the client that you’ll give it a go, and you don’t have much experience, then get online and figure out how to do it. When the time comes, you’ll do a better job than the client expected, and they’ll be far more likely to recommend you to others. If you do it the other way around and talk yourself up to get the gig, but then clearly demonstrate that you’ve never done it before, don’t be surprised if you never hear from them again.

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It’s okay to be a complete amateur when it comes to DIY and gardening. Most of the time the client knows exactly what they want doing, and even have most, if not all, of the tools you need to do it. They just need someone with a stronger back, younger muscles, and the time to do it. Sometimes all they need is a second pair of hands to hold something in place while they still do all the actual work.

You’ll quickly learn as you go. Particularly if you take the time to look stuff up online whenever you come across something you don’t know, or even ask the clients themselves how they would like it done. You’ll also find yourself getting fitter. If, like me, you were doing call-center work and waiting tables before you started odd-jobbing, you’ll find doing physical work for a couple of hours to be exhausting.

That’s why breaks are important. You’ll need to get something to drink, to eat, and to slow down for a spell before you go to the next job. Be kind to yourself. This job is going to be way better than working for a company. Pay yourself better than a regular job would, work fewer hours, keep your break times and days off as sacred as you can, and take care of yourself. Use sunblock if you’re outdoors, knee-pads if you have to kneel, and never turn down a drink.

I’m going to wrap this up for now, but there will be more posts like this coming. Feel free to ask me to elaborate on any of the points I’ve touched on, or ask me another question you might have about how to get started. You may even have a problem I’ve not had to deal with, and I’d still be happy to help you figure it out.

There are people out there that need your help with simple jobs, and they would be happy to pay you to help them. You can have the freedom to set your own hours, your own pay, and choose which clients you work with. Becoming Odd-Job Antony was the best decision I’ve ever made, and I suspect it will be for you too.

Good luck!

My Definition of Professional

I was considering writing an article about my background and experience to let people get to know me better. My thinking was that it would let potential clients get to know me better.

I was a little worried that anyone mentioned in my story might recognise themselves and disagree with my interpretation of events or their influence on me. Since everyone remembers things differently, this is practically inevitable.

However, something happened earlier this week that illustrates my personal philosophy far better than my life story, and won’t ruffle any feathers (or at least none that I personally care about).

I went to check out a couple of places for rent in the area. Both are in an area of town with a less than wholesome reputation, but rumours can sometimes be unfounded, so I wanted to take a look for myself. It also occurred to me that somewhere that does have a reputation might be more willing to risk taking on a self-employed tennant. 

I had arranged with the owner to look at two properties that were available. I arrived on time and had to wait in the rain for someone to show up. When someone did show up, he unlocked the first property and immediately went upstairs. I thought this was strange, but I followed him up. He told me he had things to do and left, so I started looking around upstairs first. You can see what I found in the video below.

A tour of the first house I viewed.

After viewing this house, I messaged the owner to let them know I was ready to view the other property, which I was told was twice as big, and also to ask when the house I’d already looked at would be finished. Not wanting to waste a perfect opportunity, I also mentioned that I could help them get it ready. They didn’t get back to me right away, so I hung out in The Hub while I waited.

They did get back to me though and I was able to go back later and see the second property. The property-manager/ handy-man had been told what I had said and was clearly under the impression that there was nothing wrong with the first house. So we went back and I showed him the bumps in the carpet, the missing floor tiles, the unfinished downstairs bathroom, damage to the kitchen cupboards (I don’t think you can see it in the video, but the door of the cupboard with the glasses in looked like something had chewed the bottom corner of it), and the mold.

He said that the place would be rented as it is. He also let it be known that there would be no work there for me. He said that they only hired professional contractors. Perhaps I shouldn’t have, but I told him that I didn’t think they’d done a good enough job. I suspect he’d done most, if not all of it, himself.

The second property was much nicer, brighter, cleaner, larger. In fact the only thing I saw wrong with it was that there were large tears in the carpets. They would have been easily covered with furniture, but I mentioned it to the property manager and asked if it would be replaced. He said no. After asking about the paint-tubs and scraps of wood in otherwise nice looking kitchen, I got a very evasive answer, as if he was telling me (a prospective tenant) that it was none of my business,

Suffice to say, even though the second property was nice, I never want to have to rely on that man to fix anything for me. Particularly since he doesn’t seem to like me much for saying that the first house wasn’t ready to be lived in.

Let’s get back to the comment he made about professional contractors. The whole line of questioning leading up to his declaration that they only hire professionals (Are you a professional? Are you a qualified tradesman?) was meant to imply that I lack the credentials to comment on or evaluate the work that had been done. As if the fact that I haven’t been to trade school disqualifies me from having standards.

I freely admit that the level of service I provide, at a very affordable rate, is that of an enthusiastic amateur. My experience with DIY has come from helping my Dad (a former plumber who also wired every socket in our old house and made a built-in vivarium for our pet reptiles) and Grandad (a joiner by trade and avid gardener) with various projects, including carpet fitting, wallpapering and plastering, and also from doing all the DIY in my own home when I lived in America.

For me, being professional is a state of mind. An attitude toward the work and your clients. It means showing up early whenever possible, getting on with the tasks requested of me as quickly and efficiently as possible, not slacking off (I give myself breaks between jobs anyway), and doing the best job I can. If I find that a job is beyond me, I get help. I’m getting to know quite a few handy-folk, many of which specialise at something I’m not so good at.

Being professional, as far as I’m concerned, means being helpful, courteous, friendly, approachable, kind and willing to go above-and-beyond to make the client happy. Yes, I don’t have a certificate that qualifies me to do odd-jobs. What I do have though is a growing number of clients that are so happy with my work that they recommend me to their friends. I even got a couple of Christmas cards and gifts.

I also think a professional should be able to listen to negative comments about their work and use that feedback to do a better job in future. The more I learn, the better I can get, and I often learn a lot more from my mistakes than I do from my successes. I don’t get in my own way.

I’m also trying very hard not to be petty or vengeful, since that would be very unprofessional of me, so I hope this post doesn’t come across as such. I admit that I am venting a little. I admit that this got under my skin a little. Hopefully, I’ve made my point without being a jerk.

Merry Christmas everyone. Have a great day.

The Viking

I’ve been wondering lately if I should get back into writing. When I saw that Facebook was piloting subscription groups, I even thought about resurrection the old ‘Creative Writers’ group from the dead. If I could collect a small subscription fee from each member it would help make up for the time and effort I would put into running the group. However, I don’t really have the time.

I had another idea. A way to get back into writing without taking time and focus away from the odd-job business. Tool and equipment reviews! Ideally I’d be using a wearable camera to record a first-person view as I’m working. For right now, I’ll have to make do with using my phone. 

Also, I have a new logo!

I’m going to talk to businesses, most likely starting with the local Builders Merchant, Travis Perkins, and ask them if they have any tools they’d like me to review. Perhaps even tell them what jobs I’ve got coming up so we can pick products that would fit with what I’m doing. Even if they don’t offer to pay me from their marketing budget, having some free tools to use in exchange for a review would certainly help my bottom line.

First, I think I need to write a few sample reviews, based on equipment I get to use already, so they can see exactly what I have to offer. Hopefully you can help me get my readership numbers up by sharing this and subsequent review articles to anyone and everyone you think might be interested. Don’t just spam everyone. That’s just annoying. Be selective 🙂

So here comes my first ever non-geeky review article ever (unless you geek out about garden equipment). It’ll be shorter than future ones, since I’ve already blathered on for quite some time now just introducing you to the idea.

The Viking!

Today I got to use a Viking GE 355 wood chipper. I first tried using it in the summer to get rid of some hedge trimmings, but I hadn’t been able to figure out how to turn it on. No amount of poking the switch was working. It had been sitting in the client’s garage for quite some time and I was worried that it was in need of repair. I put it back in the garage until I could get around to tinkering with it.

Thankfully, it was only the well-used extension cord that was faulty. I plugged it in directly to the electric socket and it worked right away. There was quite a pile of garden waste built up over the summer. A lot of it had been burned, but it’s been too damp lately to get the fire to catch, so I thought I would give the Viking a try to get rid of the rest, making use of a new power extension lead.

I discovered that it dealt with the smaller twigs and sticks with no problem, but it got choked up and stopped if it was over-filled. Particularly if there was anything over an inch thick being fed through along with the lighter stuff. Luckily the two black knobs at the top of the base are bolts that allow you to easily remove the feed hopper from the base and get to the blade. Making clearing any bits of wood that are jamming up the works super easy.

I’d highly recommend making sure the blades spin freely before you put it all back together. It’s a little frustrating to think you’ve cleared the blockage, only to have the motor stall again. You can’t test the motor before you put it back together. The blades won’t turn without the bolts screwed back in. A good safety feature really, but having to take it apart again because you weren’t thorough is annoying. 

All in all it’s a good bit of kit. It will even chew up the thicker pieces if you don’t put anything else in with it, and just let it chew. I have trouble maintaining the patience for this. It’s really helpful that you can open it up so easily. 🙂 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIR3JD6CkIM

Business to Business

When I first moved to Kidwelly, I tried to get a job with one of the local businesses. One of these businesses even gave me a trial shift. I didn’t hear back from them, until yesterday. It’s been months, but I guess with Christmas around the corner they’re looking to hire some extra hands.

This reminded me of an idea I’d considered a while back. Offering my extensive experience to businesses as well as private individuals. My workload is full at the moment, but with winter coming, and gardening work becoming unnecessary, I expect I’ll be needing other kinds of work to maintain a steady income.

I’ve been doing painting jobs, assembling furniture, etc. which has been great, but projects like that end. Once the walls are painted, the new furniture assembled, the curtains hung, the carpet laid, the cracks filled, or whatever other work I’ve been asked to do is done, there’s nothing else to do but hope they find more work for me.

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I’ve already begun making contacts among the local rental property owners and done some work for them. I’ve done handyman work for other local businesses too, gardening. I’d be more than happy to do more of the same, but it never hurts to have more to offer. I am, after all, a true jack of all trades. It would be a shame to leave some of my skills untapped.

So here’s my thinking. Local businesses can hire Odd-Job Antony, just like they might hire a plumber or an electrician, to do a job for them. This might be to cover for an absent employee, or to help with the Christmas rush, or even to do some handyman work. Either way they don’t have to employ me permanently, or even put me on the payroll. I’m a contractor, not an employee.

Here’s what I can do. Even before I got my first job in retail, I was raised to believe that a little good customer service can go a long way. I wanted to be even better, so I studied interpersonal skills, body language, and sales techniques. This served me well as I tried my hand at telesales as well as face-to-face sales positions, bar work, and even a supervisor role at a laser-tag arena.

I ended up back in retail again when I moved to America. I also got my first opportunity to work in a kitchen. It was just a McDonald’s, but it was a start. I got back into sales after that, and found I was good at over-the-phone debt collection. I only quit that job because I had to move. I found out I wasn’t so good at car sales. At least, not then. I’m a little curious if I could now with all I’ve learned since.

I started looking for other ways to make money. Particularly after I got a taste of management and corporate-ladder climbing. I started reading about self-improvement, leadership, entrepreneurship, and marketing. It got me a promotion to the marketing department of the communications company I was working for at the time. It gave me the opportunity to see how demographic data was used to increase sales, and even train people how to sell.

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I learned so much about business and management that I want to try starting my own business. I once spent a whole evening finding names and contact info for 200 people with the intention of inviting them to a tarot reading provided by my ex-wife, but she wasn’t comfortable with the idea of cold-calling strangers. In hindsight she was probably right, but it was kinda fun gathering all the information.

If you want I can tell you more about that little business venture, but it will have to be in person, or a least a private message. I started writing and blogging after that, inspired by the books I was reading. Hoping that the key to building wealth was writing. When I came back home to the UK I went back to working in bars and hotels. Until I moved to Kidwelly.

I found it hard to generate an income from writing and blogging, even using every social media marketing trick I learned. Local jobs were hard to come by, but I applied for every one that popped up. None of them panned out. I noticed though that lots of people were asking for help on the Kidwelly Noticeboard groups on Facebook. I realised there was a need that I could fill, and that’s why I started Odd-Job Antony.

To summarise. I’m a customer service and sales expert experienced in bar-work, retail, hospitality, entertainment, marketing, blogging and entrepreneurship, as well as being handy with a paintbrush, trowel, saw, hammer or screwdriver. In fact, if you can find something I can’t do, I’ll knock £10 off the next job. That’s a free hour doing anything you want. You could even use that hour to train me up if yo like. Want to try me?