It’s been an interesting couple of months as we work towards leaving the UK. The biggest challenge we have is being able to generate an income once we’re in Japan. Sure, I might have some great design and UX skills, and I might know my way round a business like the back of my hand. In Japan, however, this will count for little, not least because I’ll be barely literate (at least at the start).

That puts a lot of unfair pressure on my wife, so we had to come up with a better plan. Instead of a business entirely dependent on how many hours I can bill in a day, we needed to create something that can scale as we need it to.

Time to Experiment

Our first business idea was to generate reports that COOs would appreciate. We’d look at technologies, supply chain opportunities and up and coming business ideas that they might find interesting and useful. I produced an MVP report on CRM platforms which proved what amounted to a “one man band” would find this pretty hard to pull off. The idea was canned.

The next idea ran into problems around location. The business has to start working by mid-2018, which means it’s going to start here. We planned on selling fashion products, targeted at a Japanese audience and playing off the love for all things British. Our problem was anyone buying from us would probably end up paying customs duty, which is a poor experience. Again, back burner time.

Back to the start

So we’ve come back to an idea which gave birth to the company in the first place. My original plan for Dalmeny Close back in 2011 was to produce a regular specialist publication. That plan has been brought out from the bottom drawer, sanity checked and worked through the MVP process. I’m currently working on the first bits of research and should have edition MVP 1 out mid to late March.

Of course all of this is happening within the context of trying to sell a house and delivering a digital transformation for a consulting client. Then again, if I can pull it off with this much pressure on me I’m pretty sure everything will be fine once it becomes THE day job.

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Who is Ross A Hall?

I'm a freelance designer and writer. My clients have included Fintech startups, publishers and digital agencies. You can read more about my work here.

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