I’ve been “on my own” professionally for almost 12 years now. It’s still crazy that it all really happened by accident.
In the Spring of 2005, I decided to change jobs after a rewarding stint at Musictoday. Musictoday was my first start-up experience, but it wasn’t as small as the company I was going to work for. That company had less than 10 employees and I was going to lead an eCommerce division that only included one person, me.
I took a long weekend in between jobs. My wife and I visited the Homestead resort and that’s when I received the call. The CEO of the company that I was going to work told me that the owner has decided to shut down their eCommerce line of business. Therefore, I was without a job. I was a little taken aback, to say the least.
Thankfully, I left Musictoday on good terms. Luckily, they had yet to fill my position. I didn’t want to go back full-time though. So, I decided to freelance as a Project Manager/Business Analyst. I picked up a couple other gigs and liked it. Specifically, I liked the freedom and the variety of work. I also enjoyed the chase for new business.
Over the course of the next 12 months, I freelanced and also interviewed for jobs. I received one offer that was really hard to turn down. I also was helping my wife go through some very difficult family issues. It was a period of transition that finally ended during the second half of 2006 when I decided to fully focus on starting a business.
I never thought too seriously about starting my own business. I never felt a burning desire to become an entrepreneur. I’m not sure I would even be in this position if it wasn’t for those series of events in 2005. However, it taught me one of the most important lessons of entrepreneurship: how to transform a setback into opportunity.