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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: cakie on May 19, 2014, 06:27:28 PM

Title: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: cakie on May 19, 2014, 06:27:28 PM
Hi everyone, I'm looking for some job advice for my partner.

His qualifications are in shipping/logistics, but he has now moved back to country Victoria (Australia) where he grew up, so there are no jobs in this industry nearby (inland). His passion is horticulture, and he enjoys building and fixing things. He is an extremely fast, efficient worker, and a quick learner. (I know I'm biased, but it's true!!)

The region, although a lovely place to live with a low cost of living, has high unemployment. It is virtually impossible to get secure employment unless you have good contacts. He found one permanent job on a tree farm, but it required pretty back-breaking work, which aggravated an old injury, so he had to quit.

He's now in his early 30s. He would love to do a trade, but once again, you really need the contacts unless you're <18.

He doesn't seem to know what direction he should take now. The mustachian way is definitely his natural thinking, so I was hoping you would have some good suggestions that we haven't considered.

I'm thinking he should just focus on finding bits and pieces of low-stress work, and develop his handyman skills...he doesn't seem to think this is a marketable skill, but the local paper has several people listed to do small home maintenance / repair work, and I think he'd be able to build a business up around this if he gave it a good shot. I think it's just a confidence issue. I've run my own business before (music teaching), so I know it isn't as difficult as it seems to someone who has only ever been an employee.

I will be (hopefully) working full-time from next year, after finishing university, and I know he will feel uncomfortable if he isn't contributing much money (even though he will always be growing food + doing useful things around the house!)

What are some ways you have gone about similar things? Have any of you made a big career change from high-stress full-time work to something else without FI / savings? Any suggestions for networking in rural areas/small towns?
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: mrcheese on May 20, 2014, 02:34:07 AM
Well for networking in a rural small town I'd suggest the pub on a friday night, the local saleyards or the local branch of the CWA... :)
I come from a similar-ish area (northern coastal NSW) so I hear you on the awesome place to live but no good work opportunites without contacts. Which is why I'm in Perth.
Are there any logistics/transport companies with offices in the area such as Livestock freighters?
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: Ayanka on May 20, 2014, 04:21:50 AM
Maybe he could take the very little jobs? I remember that finding a handyman to do something specific my dad didn't have time for/couldn't do was always a big deal for my grandparents. Plus I don't know how things work overthere, but in the place I come from, no one gossiped as much as the elderly, great for getting your name out.
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: former player on May 20, 2014, 05:44:29 AM
Ayanka is right about getting your husband's name out with the elderly re handyman jobs: most of them will have been around town a long time and know (and talk to) almost everyone.  The other thing about the elderly is that there are lots of little jobs they are less capable of doing (gardening and cleaning are the obvious ones, changing lightbulbs a small but less obvious one).  Having someone on call to do these can mean that they can stay longer and more comfortably in their own homes.  Sometimes the big problem is encouraging them to spend their money on this, though, after a lifetime of frugality.

In my rural area, there is also a thriving business in supplying home helps/carers to the elderly and/or infirm.  There's logistics involved in co-ordinating workers and home visits.
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: deborah on May 20, 2014, 04:11:00 PM
Rural Victoria is usually very close to major towns - maybe he could scout out the local major towns for inspiration (for instance if there is a craft shop, it could sell his woodwork... - this is probably not the best example)
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: cakie on May 21, 2014, 04:52:47 AM
Thanks for your replies everyone. I hadn't thought about focusing on the elderly community, but this makes total sense. And I know people who do this - my mum pays for a cleaner to spend a few hours with my grandfather weekly, as he lives alone in Perth (other side of the country). In reality, it is as much about giving him some company / social interaction and occasional help with odd jobs than anything else! He really appreciates it now that he is forced to be less active.

I will suggest he has a chat to his granny about it - although she's only lived in the area a few years (Scottish migrant), she is well settled into the community and would no doubt help get the word out. The local op shop is apparently where all the gossip happens, so we can start there :P

I appreciate all the helpful suggestions, it certainly makes me feel better that you don't all think I'm crazy, trying to make a proper job out of this! I guess it's just a matter of going about the 'networking' in a strategic way, which doesn't come naturally to introverts like us ;) Once the ball is rolling, it should be ok!
Title: Re: How to create work with no savings?
Post by: plainjane on May 21, 2014, 06:12:37 AM
I think the other posters have some great ideas.  If he isn't up for being out on his own, he could also try contacting those handymen who are advertising, find out if they're looking for help and/or considering their succession plan.