Money Really Doe’s Grow On Tree’s

Opportunities are everywhere, as entrepreneurs we just have to look.

Ever heard someone say money doesn’t grow on trees?

Turns out they are wrong.

If you look for an opportunity you find them everywhere. Even in the garden.

As entrepreneurs, we rarely have all our eggs in one basket. Diversified income streams are what make us successful. We have to be open to opportunities all the time.

This year, looking for ways to pass the time. The garden went from somewhere to BBQ and sunbathe, to an acre of fruits and vegetables.

To start with, this was just a new hobby to pass all the time being spent at home.

3 months on and about 6 weeks into harvesting the food we have grown. Well, it’s another income stream.

While it’s not the kind of income stream that’s going to make us rich. It is worth a few hundred bucks. That’s after we have eaten all that we can first.

It’s also the type of business opportunity that I like. Low investment and low running costs. Sure there is time to be accounted for, but right now what else are we going to be doing?

Now we did have some help, we already had 5 cherry trees, 3 apricot trees, an apple tree, and some neglected grapevines. So it’s not like we have started from scratch.

But we did have to get them all back into a condition where they would grow viable food.

That had an upfront cost in chemicals and feeds. Then we had seeds for the various other things we are growing, basic tools, and good compost.

That upfront investment (Not sure I would call it a capital investment) was around $80.

Monthly operating expenses for feeding and weeding the land is around $3 and water around $5.

The rest of the expenses are our time. Which as I said, since we started this as a hobby and have very little else to do while locked down. Suits us just fine.

That time commitment is around 90 minutes per day during the week and 2 or 3 hours per day at the weekend. Not huge.

At the other end of the process, we have costs and time to process what we have grown.

The time spent in the garden each day includes harvesting whatever is ready. The rest of the time, around an hour per day, is processing that food and/or making something else with it.

The veg is easy, it needs to be cleaned and stored correctly. Its the fruit that takes time, especially if you need to prepare it to make a jam or juice.

At the end of all this, I have more produce than I can consume. Some of it is traded or passed around friends and family. But the rest well its sold.

Money is growing on our trees and in the ground around the property.

At the moment we have cherries, apricots, zucchini, eggplant, potatoes, apples, peppers, tomatoes, and pumpkins.

Each of those has enough planted to produce 100–300 kgs of produce.

We will be lucky to get through 200kgs of it ourselves.

This then is where the opportunity lies. People go crazy about organic produce. I can advertise on social media, and have people pre-order and stop by.

At around $1 for a kilo of produce, we are set to make over $1000 in profit off of our hobby this year.

Not a huge amount, but not bad at all for a hobby we didn’t even think about monetizing, to begin with. It’s another source of income that mixes with the others. They all build up to make a difference.

Next year with a little brand established and some more work, that can double or triple. We can also sell products such as juices, jams, etc which will add to the available income from the crop.

Again all this comes at very little investment in time, effort, or money.

As entrepreneurs, if we keep our minds open and receptive to new opportunities. We often find them in the unlikeliest of places.

Next time someone tells you that money doesn’t grow on trees. You have the answer to prove them wrong!

Starting out in Business

A poem about entrepreneurship

Starting out in business,

first steps so hard to take,

but if you want to be your own boss,

their steps you have to make.

So many think about it,

but never get the chance,

entrepreneurship is a brave choice,

success not guaranteed.

Money’s not the only thing,

that these brave people chase,

its the feeling of their freedom,

that the entrepreneur’s chase.

Using your Hobbies to become an Entrepreneur

Start out in business with what you already know

Taking the first step in business is tough.

Starting a business is a brave move. But it can be hard to know where to start.

Here is the thing though, starting with small steps is no bad thing.

One of the best places to start is with something you know and enjoy, like a hobby.

Chances are there is something that you enjoy that you know a lot about.

That thing whatever it is will be a business opportunity.

My thing is motorbikes. Because I’m passionate and I know the market, I’m able to make them into a business for me.

The same bizarrely can be said for fountain pens.

Anyway back to the topic. Making money out of what you know is a great place to start.

While it might not make you a millionaire overnight, it will let you learn while also enjoying yourself.

Once you learn the basics and get comfortable then, you can build out from there.

This is some of the best advice business advice I ever received. It’s also the most common advice that I share with others.

Whether you want to run a business part-time or work for yourself full time. We all need to start somewhere, those first steps on the path to entrepreneurship can be tough.

Starting with something familiar and taking small steps towards the bigger goal is a sensible place to start.

It’s also great fun and lets you learn while indulging in your hobby.

Overall it’s a win/win and you can’t get better than that!

Renewables and the issue with sustainability?

The waste problem that comes from constant innovation

Sustainable energy from renewables is the future. Over time these technologies get more efficient. Our reliance on fossil fuels is less and we can be smarter in the way we use Hydrocarbons.

There is an issue with the speed of innovation in renewables though. The sustainability of older technology and the waste it generates.

It’s not all bad news though, there are also opportunities. The sustainability challenge feeds directly into a need to embrace the circular economy. As these assets are decommissioned at the end of their working life.

Generally, renewables are set into 4 main groups:

  • Solar, i.e solar panels generating electricity
  • Wind, i.e wind turbines generating electricity
  • Geothermal, this is where wells are drilled into hot water lakes underground. The steam and hot water are produced to heat water for homes, offices, etc. It can also drive steam turbines to create electricity.
  • Water, hydroelectricity has been around for over 100 years. Today the new kids on the block are wave and tidal energy generators.

Out of these subgroups, its wind, and water where the challenges lie. Solar, geothermal, and hydroelectricity are mature. There is a sustainable path for a lot of the parts to be reused and recycled at the end of their life.

The same thing goes for wave and tidal generators. The pace of innovation and learning here is fast. But the structures are all made of metal, they can easily be repurposed and recycled.

The one renewable that has a challenge that’s yet to be fully solved is wind.
While wind turbines have a design life of 25 years plus, the turbine blades don’t. They are changed out from time to time as they wear. At the same time, new more efficient blade designs come onto the market all the time.

As a result, the blades have a working life less than 10 years. Because they are fiberglass they can’t be recycled.

As a result, the blades are cut up and go into landfill.

Yep, the by-product of clean energy is a huge landfill problem.

Today it’s the break in the circular economy. Everything else in the renewable chain is recycled or repurposed in the decommissioning cycle.

The blades though, well it’s easier just to dump them. This is where the opportunity lies.

n our circular economy, there has to be an alternative use. Which reduces the waste buried and reduces the economic cost of their decommissioning.

Anything which uses large fiberglass panels is a candidate. Things such as:

  • Climbing walls
  • Slides and other play structures
  • Water Slides
  • Art Installations

There are a variety of alternative uses out there. Those are just some examples.

This is where the circular economy becomes so interesting for entrepreneurs. There is always money in someone else’s waste.

Working out how you make that money is the challenge. In the world of renewables, there is a huge opportunity to make money from waste.

In fact, in all industries, as we aim for a greener planet with less waste. The opportunities to fill in the blanks in the circular economy will increase.

Giving entrepreneurs like us more opportunities than ever before.

The Stigma of Starting a Business

Why is there so much negativity around self employment?

Why the negativity???

It seems that those starting out with a full time business or a side hustle meet lots of negativity.

It could be jealousy, or the fact that its a dream for other’s that they can’t commit to?

It could even be that others around us don’t see the value in going out on a limb.

Not when we there is a monthly pay check sitting waiting for us in the comfort of steady employment?

The feedback for anyone thinking of making a start on their own business is one of negativity?

Its a big step, one not everyone understands

This is the real issue around the stigma or lack of support that people feel.

Starting a business for ourselves is a huge step.

Its not a path that we are conditioned by modern society to follow.

Like anything else in life, when people don’t understand they are suspicious of and negative.

Most who do go on to start a business understand this.

What doe’s interest me though is how many people want to make a start on their own but this puts them off?

What can we do to improve the situation?

The good news is that there are things we can do to help those making the move.

That’s important in 2020 as traditional employment options become harder to come by.

  • Throw a business shower — help them get off the ground with the basics they need to start working from home
  • Promote businesses on social media, help get the word out there
  • If you like the product or service offered then use it

3 simple things that can move the needle on societies view of the self employed.

Success stories encourage others to follow the lead.

Job markets where they are, many more are going to have to take the plunge into working for themselves.

In the end

Times are changing, whether its full time or part time most of us are taking that brave plunge into the unknown.

What’s needed to make that work is for us to come together and be positive about the experiance.

The viewpoint society has today has to change.

If we are going to give people the confidence to make that lifestyle work for them…