Friday, May 28, 2010
I was a NSW public servant, working in eBusiness, project managing the development of such things as websites, applications, and at the end, the move to social networking through Twitter, FaceBook, blogs, etc. I commuted from our Blue Mountain's cottage to the Sydney CBD, a three hour return journey for 9 years!
Last year, this commute, plus my growing unhappiness and lack of fulfillment in my work sent me searching for other career modes that would free me from both commute and 'working for the man'. I wanted something away from technology, I love using it, but was so tired of trying to convince managers that social networking wasn't 'risky'! A friend had become a marriage celebrant a few years earlier and so I investigated the idea and loved it, it suited me to a 'T'. So last year I returned to study and qualified as a registered Civil Marriage Celebrant and started the journey to my new business of Offbeat Ceremonies.
Instead of office politics, I get to be with people who want to reconnect to community, who take time to mark and celebrate each new season of life, its a role where I can celebrate important and significant parts of people's lives.
I'd never run a business, had no idea what to do, so I went in search of a business coach who would be my guide and 'shaman' into this next phase of my working life. I found @TerriCook of SuccessZone through Twitter and she has been helping me turn from a 'desk jockey' to a small business entrepreneur who runs Offbeat Ceremonies.
Through Terri I found my 'Purple Cow', Seth Godwin's groundbreaking idea of niche markets. Once I found it, I spent ages finding out the who, what, why and how of them, once this was locked down I could design my marketing strategy, graphics,website around my niche. This is what I've been working on rather than blogging!
All of this has been a revelation to me, I have learnt so many new skill sets and discovered strengths that I knew nothing about. I am loving my business coaching and I would highly recommend @TerriCook to anyone who wants to take the plunge and change their life around.
At Easter I left my job and took early retirement to further develop Offbeat Ceremonies. I was apprehensive and scared of this step, iis hard to move from the secure boundaries of a good fortnightly salary, not to mention holidays, long service leave and sick leave! After a holiday in Melbourne I came back and panicked, 'argh! what have I done' but @TerriCook worked me through it and while I'll be hit by these doubts again, being my own mistress and doing what I want to do is so empowering!
Summit Gear, which I am enjoying immensely and gives me a weekly income as I build up the business.
I also spend time on my business, networking, reaching out, marketing and I'm running a competition at the moment:
Join my FaceBook Offbeat Ceremonies fanpage by COB on 31 May and you could win a wedding, commitment or vow renewal ceremony valued at $650!
I am loving the freedom of my new life, I love my clients who are people in love with each other, with life and the world. I love that I have more time for the things that are important to me, my beloved partner, my friends and my business.
The most exciting thing of late is the creation of two videos about Offbeat Ceremonies by @jerelmani and @Lizzzzzzigal from Who Needs a Secretary, once again I met them both through Twitter. A wonderful and creative pair and to quote them
We can handle all of your media requirements inhouse – including professionally produced corporate videos. Our video production team includes specialists in television production and interview techniques. Our team is ideal for working with media shy talent, helping bring out the best in our interview subjects. Take at look at Lorna McKenzie’s latest video, for her Blue Mountains based business, Offbeat Ceremonies.
So, as invited by Who Needs a Secretary, here's the link to my YouTube videos, go and find out about my passion for Offbeat Ceremonies
Rites of Passage
May good fortune rule over you,
Peace live in your heart,
And the stars watch over you.