For almost a decade I have worked on many projects, websites, blogs, clients and have seen that those projects that I work on weekends always works
For almost a decade, I have worked on many projects, websites, blogs, clients and have seen that those projects that I work on weekends always work.
Let me share with you some examples.
When I was in college and then doing a day job, I worked on Go4Expert.
Having a day job meant that I could work on the site after returning from work but mainly on weekends.
I created other niche communities like CFanatic, which was a C programming community and is now merged into Go4Expert. However, those communities never worked as much as Go4Expert.
When I left my job and was mainly working on my websites, blogs, and building other niche blog and forums, I took up a few clients for freelancing but not full time.
So when Google Panda and Penguin hit my site traffic. I needed money; this is when I could switch over to yet another of my weekend projects and become a freelancer. Yet again, things that I do in my leisure time worked.
I work for clients now, but on weekends I learned to trade and invest in the equity market and did share it on my investment blog.
Yet another of the weekend project that is working well for me now. I even have published a book for it now.
I am not sure why, but weekend projects have always worked for me. It can be co-incidence once or twice, but I doubt it is a coincidence every time.
Reverse engineer to find out reasons why weekend project work, I can only come up with a couple of reasons:
- The expectation is very low from a weekend project.
- Working on something on the weekend does mean you just love it.
After analyzing my weekend projects, I think everyone especially, entrepreneurs, bloggers as well as freelancers should work on at least a weekend project.
The Misconception About Being the Pioneer of an Idea?
Bloggers and freelancers, when they want to consider a weekend project, want to start with a brand new idea. But I see that there are very few big ideas that have become great businesses (for computers and the online world at least) for those who pioneered it.
Let us look at a few examples.
- Microsoft Windows has changed the face of personal computers. However, Windows is not the first operating system. No, it is not even Microsoft’s DOS or MS-DOS. It was IBM DOS, and as of today, I am not sure if IBM DOS exists.
- Google is not the first search engine online either. There were many other search engines like Lycos, AltaVista before Google.
- Facebook is not the first social media site, and GMail is not the first Email service provider either.
What is it that makes them better than the pioneers? They created similar products but understood the pain points of the customer with the existing product and took steps to improve those pain points.
- MS-DOS worked on WYSIWYG and moved to Windows. I remember Windows 3.1 used to boot from DOS. What it meant is you start the black screen and the command prompt type a command to fire up Windows.
- Google Search was far better than those crappy search engines. Similar things can be said about Gmail as well. I remember when I used to be on Yahoo and Hotmail and always had to clean up my inbox because of the low space of 6MB and 2MB, respectively. Gmail took away the pain of clearing the mailbox when it started with 1 GB.
- Facebook understood the pain points people have on other social platforms.
Google has repeatedly entered into markets that already exist and crush competitors. Google is trying social media space for quite some time with Orkut, Google Buzz, Google Wave, and now Google+.
So if you are trying to work on a new idea as a weekend project, I think you should not try to re-invent the wheel. Work on something that you often use but find pain points when using it.
Be Greedy in the Thirties and the Forties
No, you shouldn’t be satisfied in the thirties and forties. Rather be greet and willingness to learn and hustle.
However, if you are, you possibly haven’t sought many options to try things.
Still, if you are satisfied.
- It means you are paid well and doing what you wanted to be doing. However, you chose what you wanted to be doing based on all the options you have in mind.
- You may be the youngest member of a team, and all others are well settled, and you are satisfied because people around you are.
In the early stages of your career, you should be ready to experiment. The experiment can be anything from trying to be a freelancer, entrepreneur, or even switch technologies and responsibilities in the job.
In the twenties and thirties, your worldview will be limited. Having a weekend project can help the experiment. Being satisfied can limit your worldview forever.
People learn from their mistakes, and if you haven’t made a few mistakes, you have not explored your full potential.
When I was doing a job, many colleagues were satisfied in their career, and they were an excellent team leader or an awesome project manager. However, I always thought they could have done much more than being what they are.
I was in love with C++ programming in college and if I had been doing C# programming (which was my last job profile). As a developer, you are never considered writing. So I will never know if I wanted to be a writer or not, or how exciting it is to be an investor in the equity market?
I did many job switches because I was never satisfied with my job switches on my about page.
Similarly, I was a trader in the equity market with a success ratio. My willingness to experiment helped me move from a trader to an investor. It was possible only because I wasn’t satisfied with what I was doing though it was doing good with any set of parameters.
- If you considered earning more than what you deserve, you are in the wrong fraternity. You need to move your circle such that you should not be the most earning person.
- If you are considered the most intelligent person among friends, you are with the wrong fraternity again. You need to move your circle such that you should be able to learn from people.
It is not about money or knowledge, but it is about experimentation. If you don’t experiment, there is no way to increase your worldview.