Not long ago, I met an individual who claimed to be an eco-innovation environmental business trainer. Indeed, I met with this gentleman in Starbucks, and he had been delivered by his caregiver son, because he was older, moving slow, and did not have home Internet access. Needless to sayhe did not have very many customers and his last few customers did not do this well, and I guess they probably skipped out on paying his consulting invoice.
Yes, he was an environmental trainer, and many might consider a dream job, but in his case, it did not seem to be. Okay so, let’s discuss this for a moment when we might because I think there’s a lesson here somewhere. You see, it looks like the alternative energy bubble was blown too large and made to quickly. There were promises from prominent politicians sitting up at podiums that there could be constant money flow for the alternate energy high-tech sector.
The fact is I think there was lots of cash flow, cheap loans, subsidies, and grants for people who are politically connected in Washington DC, or in a variety of states that were left-leaning in their thinking, and genuinely pro-environmentalist. This gentleman’s business career spanned several decades, and he was in his early to mid-80s though his mind was not as sharp as it once was, he’d worked with a few rather leading-edge firms in his day and had great stories to tell.
He still had some great contacts in the business, but even those were withering away, as things change as the market meanders through its business cycles. He was now working to assist several young entrepreneurs launching new products, innovations, and inventions in the alternative energy space. He had been helping them find financing, enhance their business strategies, and take it all to the next step. His experiences reminded me of a few of the challenges we had with spin-offs from the eco-tech area at our think tank.
Additionally, it appears that the startups he had been working with had entrepreneurs who were searching for very quick short-term profit, and were complete opportunists, they did not really need a trainer or consultant, they wanted someone to do all of the work for them. This gentleman was more fortunate than that, and at his age, he had been laid back individual, and eager to assist these folks as far as they’d be happy to help themselves, and so long as they paid for his services.
It appears to me that it was a labor of love since he clearly was not doing it for the money. It seemed like the world had changed, and young entrepreneurs now we are trying to earn a fast buck without putting in the hard work ethic it takes to have a successful startup. Nevertheless, he loves the process, but I’d hardly call it a dream job. Please think about all this and consider it, if you have any questions or comments along this line of thinking, you might shoot me an email.