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Thread: One more year

  1. #1
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    One more year

    15 February has come and gone ...which leaves me with less than one year to go... to reach my 30 years of being self employed goal.

    Life is about goals...some big some small...the important thing in life is to have goals.

    The best thing that could ever have happened was that bank manager making a comment that I wouldnt last 5 years and i would be out on the street unemployed and broke...that was my first goal ...to make sure my business lasted at least 5 years ...which came and went... then it was to reach 10 years ...by ten years it wasn't even a challenge anymore ...just business as usual.

    It has been a long difficult journey... no business plan ...no capital... no trust fund or pension payout to help get started... just hard work...long hours and lots of mistakes.

    When I set out on this journey I thought with a lot of hard work it would take a few years and i could sit back and enjoy the bundle of cash i had built up... drive a nice car... live in a big house and life would be great... well if that is what you think being self employed is all about i have bad news for you.

    I made a decision when i started that i would never stoop that low that i would pay bribes or allow myself to get suckered into under hand deals... i can sit here today and honestly say i have never done it... i still dont advertise ...every single job has been a referral from another person or company or people who have visited a site where i have been working.

    So what is the plan ...new goal for next year ...i need to get through this year first...then i will decide.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

  2. Thanks given for this post:

    ACEsterhuizen (19-Feb-20)

  3. #2
    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    Well done Ian,
    Integrity always comes out tops. At least you can sleep at night with peace in your heart and no skeletons in the closet.
    Jy wil nie wakker skrik nie!
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Well done!.
    Also started my business in 1991.
    Man those school fees were costly.
    Also have had many good times, and some very rough times too.
    We tend to forget the rough times due to embarrassment

    Hopefully we will reach that 30 year mark.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    Thanks Blurock

    Justloadit ...well done ...you need to pat yourself on the back ...not many people can say they have been self employed for 29 years ...considering the fail rate is 50- 70 % within the first 5 years and 98 % by the 10th year ...30 years must be around 0.00000000000001 %.

    The big question is where to from here... i am not sure i want to be doing what i am now for the next 30 years..not just because i dont want to ...i dont know if it is physically possible to maintain this level of hands on work... i still haven found a youngster to pass on my knowledge ....the scary part is if you have made this far ...the chance you are gona get old and die before your business fails is even higher...eeeish.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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    Last year i didn't take time off in December... i started a shutdown on the 6th and worked through until the end of Jan...since then I have been catching up with all the little jobs which people have been waiting for me to finish the shutdown...i am almost done ...then i want to take off a few days ...go fishing or just take a really long walk.

    The new year has bought with it a more work than i can handle ...the first question everyone asks when i inform them that i cannot do the job ...who can i recommend... the other problem is the size of projects which are in the pipeline for the middle of this year... I have requests to quote for project which are way out of my league... i just dont have the capital or the infrastructure to handle them.

    I was hoping to just finish this last year reach my goal then decide where to from there ...but the way things are going I might have to get help.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

  7. #6
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    Well done Ian !

    Interesting topic for us old toppies.
    The guys at ARB refer to me as the senior citizen.
    At 61, I'm not old, but getting there.

    Retirement is not in the Stuart family vocabulary.
    My grandfather worked until he died. My father worked until he died, and so will I.
    I have been taught that the secret is to pace oneself, but don't stop.

    If you don't desperately need the money, why take on bigger projects with the associated problems and stress ?

    In my case, as I've gotten older, my needs have decreased, so chasing the buck has become less important.

    As you can see, it's now 1am. If I want to sleep late, that's what I do.

    My motto now is .... keep going, stay small and when the water and weather is right, go fishing. I deserve it.


    Cheers and peace out .... Derek
    Last edited by Derlyn; 20-Feb-20 at 01:33 AM.

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    I will never stop working ...however i have the knowledge and experience which is far more beneficial than me drilling holes in a wall.

    I have come to realise my worth... and going to tread carefully moving forward ...i have had a few people offer me partnerships ...unfortunately i have learnt that most people are looking for a worker/runner not a partner.

    what i have learnt from this is what is in my head is worth more than all the material stuff stuff i own...buildings ...vehicles ...tools and test equipment are worthless without the right mindset.

    One of my biggest mistakes in this business has been purchasing "stuff"... over capitalising on projects... buying R50 000 worth of tools to do a R100 000 project... so you end up with a million rands worth of stuff and not enough man power to utilise all the stuff... its great because you pay less tax ... however when you realise the mistake ...you cant even recover 50 % of the cost of the stuff...never mind still make a profit.

    I am also not looking for someone to invest and sit on side and collect profits ...if i do go into a partnership or join a bigger company which already has the infrastructure it will have to be with people who have the same vision as i do ...to work hard and grow.

    Where I am fortunate ...i have spent almost 40 years of my life investing in myself... learning as much as I can...taking chances ...believing in myself and getting out there and just making it happen ...that saying been there done that... but what is even more important... how little I actually know and the fact that i am aware of it.

    My goal for this year was to get debt free ...completely ...credit card limit ...gone paid up and reduced....instead of buying stuff ...i have started paying ahead ... I dont have to work for the next 2 months all the bills are covered. ..next step is to look at the "stuff" and decide if it is to go... sell it and loose money ...but i am not really loosing money...or keep and just in case (bad idea)

    I cant believe that the the business banker at Westville standard bank has still not figued out how to reduce my business overdraft limit ...they only know how to do it if you get into debt and are forced you to reduce it... I contacted them last week ...a conference call to their credit department that person could'nt assist either... you cant do it on the Standard bank app ...apparently it is not something people do... I can go sit in the que at Standard and wait for the business banker to see me so that he can increase it ...but not decrease the limit.

    Apparently it has something to do with the investors...loan to the bank who knows... all i know its f%^&*n ridiculous.

    It still blow my mind that Standard bank would not increase my overdraft limit ( a couple of years ago when i needed it) yet they could give me R100 000 worth of credit card debt within 20 minutes... and couldn't finance my new vehicle ...yet another bank offered the finance while on the phone... they did contact me 3 weeks later to offer the finance ...i was already driving the vehicle.

    Standard bank... moving forward from 1950...they havent quite got to 2020 yet....dont let Standard bank stop your dream from moving forward.
    Comments are based on opinion...not always facts....that's why people use an alias.

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