Many of you have asked me, “Morgan, what will you do when you are over in Croatia?” My answer is not clean and perfect. Usually I ramble on and on. Although moving means I gave up my five-year career in sales, it also means I have the time and opportunity to pursue my “dream job,” whatever that may be. Spoiler alert: I haven’t found it quiet yet.
I do have two solid leads on jobs this year, so that is a definite start. Read about each below. Then, if you are interested in what I am looking for in a dream job (the aforementioned "rambling"), keep going down the article. Baby steps, is what I keep saying.
In US embassies around the world, there are positions open to EFMs (Eligible Family Members, such as spouses or dependent adult children). These positions are usually tough to get because there are fewer jobs than EFMs.
Well, I nabbed one! The process was lightning quick – I applied on Monday, got the call for an interview on Tuesday, interviewed Wednesday then accepted the position on Thursday! Once my on-boarding process finishes, I will be a Roving Secretary. Basically, I will be a substitute secretary at the embassy when another is out for planned leave, out sick or when they have special projects that need extra hands.
The biggest benefit of having an embassy job will be meeting and working with other people in our community; I want to make friends and socialize. Living abroad can be very isolating if you do not create a wide and interactive network. Finally, the flexibility allows me to take Croatian language classes, join local women’s networking groups, volunteer and continue searching for that “dream job.”
The second lead I have is with portrait photography, which I am over the moon about. As many of you know, I have always loved photography. I am nowhere near professional, and I do have aspirations to continue improving and expanding my skills (especially indoor and studio photography).
After we arrived, I asked one of our embassy resources if there were any photographers in our community. To my surprise, no one is currently offering sessions for our American Expats! Before we got here, there was a Marine who took amazing portraits; I have big shoes to fill. Challenge accepted!
Additionally, I noticed that local Croatian photographers were few and far between in Zagreb, which means there could be a larger need. I threw together a flyer for our newsletter and have already had a few people interesting in family portraits. I am THRILLED! Also, for those of you kind enough to let me practice on your and your beautiful families, you may see some familiar faces ;) I have the most beautiful models!
Small Online Business
Okay, now for the small online business I want to open in the future, aka my dream job.
Let me give you some background. One of the big trends I have seen online is a switch from women having corporate jobs to creating their own business online. This is for many reasons, two of which are being your own boss and having a flexible schedule to stay home with small children. As a trailing spouse and (optimistic) future mother, both of these benefits are extremely attractive.
Another growing business trend is creating passive income streams for your small business. When you think of small business, you may picture the locally owned pharmacy, an accountant who works alone or a friend who sells handmade accessories. With those types of businesses, the more you sell the more you work. It is harder to scale these businesses without hiring more people because of the time it takes to complete your product or service.
(Example: if it takes you three hours to make a baby bow and you have an order for ten of them, you will need to spend 30 hours filling your order.
Another example: an average accounting consultation takes you two hours and you have three new clients, so you will need six hours to bring in the income from the new clients.)
Passive income, on the other hand, is a way to scale product or service sales without having to hire extra people or spend more time filling orders. Pat Flynn and Tim Ferriss are both gurus on this topic. The idea is not new; people have been selling books and webinars for years. The transition to online products and services has just seen exponential growth lately. I mean, who doesn’t want to make something once and then see income from it for years?
(Example: you create a eBook about planting a garden on a small urban apartment balcony and you sell it online. You spend time creating and promoting your product. You sell 1,000 copies of the eBook, but the amount of time and work you for one sale is the same for 1,000 sales.
Another example: an accountant decides to create an online course that helps small business owners prepare and pay their taxes. She creates and promotes the course, and then she presents it to hundreds of students at once. The time and work is the same whether she has one or a hundred students, but the income grows with each sale.)
Right now, I am in the research phase of two small business ideas. These ideas are in areas of passion for me; if I am lucky, I can help people while making a living. Cross your fingers and send your prayers!
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Love to all,