Atypical days

The only thing typical about my life these days is that it’s typically atypical. Take yesterday for example. The only real consistency between yesterday and the days before is that I was engaged in very different things, but the things, mostly, different from one day to the next.

So let me see. First thing yesterday was catching up on my emails and correspondence. That’s reasonably normal actually, but more of a ritual than an activity. It’s like brushing my teeth. You get that out-of-the-way and the real day begins.

Yesterday morning it was me writing a script. I get asked to do this on an occasional basis. Basically I get sent a lot of client guff which I’m asked to turn into a usable and meaningful script to be used as on-hold messages. Typically that means a script of between 4-6 segments, each segment of about 20-30 seconds worth of reading. I’ve been doing it for a several years now and do it pretty well apparently. It’s not terribly difficult. The real work is at that start – absorbing all the client info, separating it into distinct selling points or messages, and then identifying the key aspects within each message to highlight in the script. For example, yesterdays script was for a mortgage broker who also deals with insurance and buyers advocacy. I split it into 5 segments (I was told max 400 words, so 80 words a segment thereabouts). In the mortgage section I emphasised how the mortgage is tailored to the customer (from a range of mortgage options greater than their competitors), how the consultants visit the customers at home, and how the consultants will look after every bit of red tape from start to finish.

I find it pretty easy. Once I’ve got the key points at my fingertips I convert it into marketing-speak, the easy, confident language of someone who knows their stuff and knows it’s good. It’s important to impart as much detail as possible – I also ask myself what questions would I have? – at the same time as making it conversational in tone. It has to read well. I might have spent a tad over an hour on that before sending it on to my client in draft version, only for them to clap their hands and tell me it was perfect as is. I don’t know why I don’t do more of these – they are pretty simple, and it’s pretty easy money. I guess I don’t because I do it as a talented dilettante and not a dedicated professional. I like writing, but I don’t really equate it with that. There is some creativity to it, and you have to write well, but it doesn’t inspire me a whole lot.

Anyway, after that I walked up the road to buy some office supplies for the shop. Returning home I made contact with a few people networking and applying for work. More drudgery really.

Mid-afternoon I drove into the shop. From the warmest July day on record the temperature plummeted, dark clouds gathered and rain erupted in a very Melbourne day. By then I was behind the desk filling in as a receptionist for a change. Was kept moderately busy doing that, but dead bored.

In between serving customers, surfing the net, and reading Fast Company I made notes for another business idea I’m keen to get off the ground. I’ve discovered that I’m greatly motivated by creating things, by making things happen. I always have lots of ideas which, in the past, I largely left to wither. Being creative by nature gets me enthused however, and I begin to see endless possibilities.

This idea is a good one. I won’t go into details, but there’s a huge and ever-growing market I’d be selling into, with little if any real competition in the segment I’m targeting (that’s our selling difference, a unique take on the product), and relatively low-cost and manage going forward. And so I scribbled my notes on the back of a few pages of scrap paper from the printer. Now need to source some expertise.

I got home a little after 8, at which point my ‘working’ day was officially over. I slumped onto the couch and did as so many Australians do right now – I flicked between a rum selection of international sport coming out of Europe. The Ashes, the Tour de France, and the British Open golf. Great stuff.

Now it’s Friday – and a completely different day.