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Nine stories of success and failure, with key lessons

Image created by author in Canva.

When I retired in 2011, I thought the time was right to become an entrepreneur. I’d have the freedom to do what I wanted, when I wanted. I wouldn’t have to deal with idiotic bureaucracy. I could work from wherever I felt like: on a beach, at sea on a cruise, or chilling at a coffee house.

I started a business. I ran through our savings and never got a single paying client.

Desperate to bring in some money, I became a freelancer. I burned out and made myself ill from the stress.

I created e-commerce and affiliate marketing websites…


My work-related pet peeve

Photo: Icons8 Team on Unsplash

My husband and I now both work from home. Currently, our offices are right next door, in bedrooms #2 and #3 of our house.

Offices are designed to minimize sound. They have sound-absorbent ceiling tiles. Cubicles are lined with sound-absorbent cloth padding.

Houses are not.

We learned to communicate at a distance with clients and coworkers using the telephone. With a telephone, we can hear our own voices, and modulate the sound based on that feedback.

Now, we use headsets and Zoom meetings. We get no vocal feedback. If it’s hard for us to hear someone, we assume they can’t…


Using the June 2021 words of the day

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

My road to writing this article has been anfractuous. First I was inspired by my colleague who wrote about her experience writing a word-of-the-day challenge. She dished the dirt to peach on the challenge, but her summary alone would not have inspired me to go through all the rigmarole to try it myself.

Then I followed the breadcrumb trail back to the writer who originally proposed the didactic challenge. I started to glean how the challenge could benefit writers, beyond those competing for a monetary prize.

It breaks writers from the solipsism of scouring their own reflections and bumptious reactions…


Leave room for serendipity. Steve Jobs and I have something in common.

Graphic by author, via Canva. Image of Steve Jobs by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay.

The career experts all trumpet the value of having a plan. Have a yearly plan, a 5-year plan, and a 10-year plan. Know where you’re going, so you know how to get there.

Yet look at any successful person, and you’ll find a history littered with happy accidents and failed plans.

Steve Jobs bought Pixar for their Pixar Image Computer (PIC), an early graphics computer built for the Lucasfilm Computer Division. Despite the superiority of the graphics processing, they sold very few units. But the animated movies the company turned out using the PIC made Jobs a billionaire after Pixar…

Jennifer Dunne

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