Monday, February 28, 2011

The New Direction...

The “New direction” in your life…

Some people say:"and think" in order to start a new project, a new chapter in life, a change, career move, etc. you need money, resources, time, effort, etc. or a combination of all.

I say: "not true". The only thing you need is the will power to do it and set some time aside for your new direction.

I've received a lot of emails these past few months, with all kinds of questions and requests, and this issue will be all about your issues, and how some other people will do about it.

I received an email from this lady in South Los Angeles. Let us call her Doris. She has two siblings and a part-time job as an office receptionist. Doris is divorced for the past three years, and she lives in a rental apartment. She explained to me she is having a hard time to make the month some times. The only income she has is from child support and her part- time job.

With this economy we can't take anything from granted, nor rely on others for our convenience. I would say we got to do what we got to do to make ends meet. And the more independent we are from others, it is the best.

Going back to Doris, she asked me if I would help her find a better job, a cheaper place to live, or any ideas. And also she asked me to help her with her taxes this year.

Later on, when I was going through her numbers, I noticed a few inconsistencies that trigger other issues. She told me about her failed attempts to be a real estate agent, working as an entertainer, etc, but her end up working part -time as a receptionist instead.

I felt bad for Doris, in a way her story reminded me when I was in the low a few years back. I tried to cheer her up, we were having such a good time doing her taxes, "my clients refer to me as the funniest tax preparer they have ever met."

While I was going to my regular,"Tax Questionnaire", she kept going back to tell me how she likes to meet new people, and talking about issues, and how she always wanted to be working in a fast-paced job environment.

Then is when I suggest Doris not to wait until someone or somebody, "discovers her"our dialog was something like:

Me: Girlfriend, you have places to go, people to meet, and things to do on your own

Doris: You think so?

Me: Yeah AH

Doris: Nah AH

Me: Yeah AH

Doris: Nah AH

(Yes, we were shaking heads in the last part of the dialog)

We have a good loud laugh, then I explained to her how convenient it would be for her to just start her own thing. I could tell Doris likes Clothing, make up and jewelry. So I suggested that Doris go to downtown LA (you can find anything you could ever desire for really cheap in there) get some of those good deals, and then just talk to her other girlfriends about it, and if someone wants to buy from her,"to just let her do so" but not before adding a good 15 to 30% on each item, and just take cash in the spot, do not sell credit... with this troubled times you don't want to risk that. I think you will do well.

I totally forgot about the whole issue, until Doris came back a few of days later to pick up her big fat refund check.

Doris: Enrique you are a witch!

Me: Well, in a way I’ve always new that… but what do you mean?

Doris: I did what you told me to do, and I made almost $400 in just one night!

For a moment, I panic and I just though to myself “we are not in Nevada and that is not tax deductible in California…. maybe medical pot but…”

Me: tell me about it

Doris: I went downtown, bought a whole bunch of stuff….. Invited my girlfriends, and pretty much sold out the same night!

After my soul went back into my body…

Me: you see girlfriend, Yeah AH

She was even happier to receive her refund check. I suggested that she invest her money in some income producing factor, and to keep choosing her items with the season, and to keep choosing her invitees the way I had explained to her before.

I've also suggested to Doris to keep her part-time job, to enroll in real estate school in the local community college during this time.

I'm really happy for Doris and also curious to follow up with her next year, and she is so happy that had sent my way a couple of new clients too.

Some times taking "a new direction" in your life doesn't come easy, some times you get hints, or some times it comes in the hardest way in the worst moments in life.

New direction video

Since I don't like to put clients on the spot as examples for the extreme cases, then I will use one of my own.

Back on the time, before I took the business creation and the tax preparations seriously; I was working full-time for a property management company and playing volleyball in a Hollywood league for fun. Back on those days I wanted to go to school for construction management and do something for me, but seem like we all choose whatever is easier for us, whatever takes the least amount of work to do.

Let's face it, we are all lazy bums

At this office the work environment was nice, the co-workers, the office location, etc. it was all nice. Except for a couple of little details that bothered all of us at this particular office.

One issue was the main boss was not available at the office to sign all the payable checks in the due date, for some reason the boss like to submit the checks out one day before the due date, have it postmarked in the post machine at the office and have the post man pick it up the next day.

The only problem was that the boss liked to go out a lot, he was away from the office most of the time, and when he was in the office it was to do his own thing, and he did not like to be bothered by the controller to sign the checks.

As you already guessed, the checks were postmarked late most of the time, and the company got to pay a lot in late fees, and boy the boss liked to blame everybody for that.

Let us add up to the story that the system at this office was way out dated (slow) because the boss was cheap enough not to invest the money on it.

When the bossy girlfriend (the bosse’s girlfriend who also work at this office) gave me the last pay check, I've noticed she miscalculated the amount; she overpaid me a whole lot. Then, the girlfriend gave me her speech of why they can't give me any severance pay or vacation, etc. until today I can’t believe how in the work she still works there.

And yes, I do believe I have enough material for a successful sitcom here.

And another little detail, the boss and his girlfriend dropped their dog at the office (every single day) to be baby sited by the employees while they went out for brunch with their friends, etc.

Guess this wasn't the most professional office I worked for.

The thing is, I put up with all this crap because I was learning so much about the business at this place, the priority for me was to learn as much as I could (as my immediate supervisor told me to) and get the hell out of there, and that's exactly what I did.

The day I was called into the bosses office to let me know that I was no longer an employee for that company (the new direction), I felt sad because my learning experience ended, for leaving my friends, and that's it.

My life turned into a new direction, I used the new acquired knowledge to land in another company that offered better pay and benefits, and the only problem was that they got scared the hell out of my spine problem.

I am a true believer of,"things happened for a reason" this big company was just turning into the new software system I was always interested on learning, so my learning experience was so slim that it was not a good match, the pay and benefits were excellent, but not everything in life can be measured with money, I think you agree with me.

After I have my doubts cleared and I was already in the hunt for another opportunity, I was called to the corporate office; the message was “please rush to the main office”.

I got there, and the same people who hired me were there in the conference room, I knew already what it was for so I was calm. What came next is the most estrange thing:

Carla : we have the owner of the company in the line
(HR Lady)

Me: ok

Owner: Enrique, the company has decided to take in a new direction, and unfortunately for you, the new direction doesn’t include you, thanks for your professionalism and Carla will take it from here.

Carla: here is your final check, and please do not forget to sign all this papers, they state you never got injured at this company, you have no future claims for it, etc.

Me: that’s true.

Later on I thought am I that important to have all these people in the conference room? Was it necessary for the owner of the company to participate as well?

Then better news kept on coming my way… I injured both of my knees, I need it surgery on both of them, and I had no insurance. So I was forced to quit playing volleyball.

Anyway, this was "the moment" when my life took on the real,"new direction" a couple of months later I got my own place, I landed to "the job" at the best place for property management, the system was already in place, everything flow so easily, my new boss Bridget was the best boss I ever had, no doubts about it, my co-workers were so knowledgeable about their areas, and so professional as well.

It was like working in the best place ever for me, I've learned a lot of good things in there, and I got paid to it too, too good to be true, but it wasn't, and it still remains as the best place I ever work.

Once in my new job, I got good use of my insurance and had both of knees “fixed”, I had to be out of the physical activity for a long while, so I concentrated on my new classes and that just happened in the right moment in the right time for me

And my classes were given just two blocks away from the new job place, this was meant to be, no doubts about it. At the end I graduate with distinction J

So my friends, when your life turns in a new direction, don't feel nervous, don't stress, and just go with the flow.

This issue was based on fictitional facts, any resemblance with real life is a mere coincidence... or maybe not

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