How to do what you love

Doing what you love is the dream of entrepreneurs all over the world, inspiring people to turn their passions into their day job. Here Matt Doyle, founder of Launchcloud and one of our Virgin StartUp ambassadors, talks about how you can make what inspires you into a career.

I wanted to do something a little different this month, and talk about how you can get to do what you love. I know this has been really important for me, with developing and running Launchcloud.

Recently, a friend of mine was asking for careers advice on Facebook.  For ages he's been  trying to get a real break as a designer, a career he really loves. Recently he’s been finding it harder and harder to find work. Someone he respects had advised him to try a completely new career. So, he was on Facebook asking for people’s opinions. There was one comment that really stood out to me; it read, “Go wherever the money is”. I just had to respond by saying that he should stick with what he loves.

Go with your passion and work on it, and eventually the money will follow. You will end up successfully doing something that you really love, which in turn means you will be more motivated to grow and achieve more.

This got me thinking about what you need to do to be able to keep doing what you love. One of the most important things is to keep everything Lean, after the Lean Startup model. Sometimes this is easier said than done, but at Launchcloud we’ve worked really hard to keep everything as streamlined as possible. This helps us to be agile and adaptable, which means we can pivot when we need to, without struggling and losing ground. Being Lean makes it so much easier for us to be able to say yes to a last-minute meeting, or to hop on a flight. It also means that we can make improvements to the Launchcloud app quickly and effectively.

Choosing your direction and decoration

Living within your means can be hard for a start up, but is vital. If your processes are Lean, it’s a lot easier to do this. You aren’t spending money on completing tasks that don’t add any value. My life is deliberately Lean, except perhaps for the odd pizza delivery! In all seriousness though, I would never be able to take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves if this wasn’t the case. I have a home, a car, an office and a mobile data app. Everything else is the decoration, and I get to choose how to decorate. Right now I’m adding a splash of colour by spending time in the US, to create new contacts, set up meetings and build relationships with some of my favourite tech companies. This wouldn’t be possible if I hadn’t created a life where I have the flexibility to choose my direction, and that of Launchcloud.

The flexibility to say yes

If you have too many onerous tasks and processes weighing you down, you stand the chance of losing out on those opportunities that can make all the difference to your future. I’ve lost count of the number of times that I’ve been able to accept a really productive call or meeting at the last minute, because I’ve made sure that I have the space and time to be flexible. A major part of doing this is cutting out the clutter. You do this at home by taking all those Christmas jumpers, ties and socks to the charity chop in January. In business you do this with your surroundings and your product. At Launchcloud we have certainly used our own Lean awareness to improve and adapt our product, in order to make our clients’ lives Lean too.

I’ll leave you with this parting shot for this month. Use your creativity to do something you really believe in, and make your life as Lean as possible. You will achieve the results you want, and you will be happy and satisfied doing so.

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