What are you going to do now?
When discerning how to handle the conflict rising in me, I created a list of priorities:
- Need to be home more.
- Need to make no less than my current salary.
- Need flexible schedule.
- Need to continue doing something I’m passionate about.
At first, I started thinking about if I should try to flesh out “Brandon Kraft Tech Services”. When friends, small organizations I’m involved with, etc have asked me to help them on some level with a website, I use Tech Services as a platform for offering them webspace, domain name and some other really basic things at a low price that, frankly, I would like to see offset the total cost of my website. I don’t spend much on this, but it would be nice to be able to tell Vanessa that all my geekness is budget-neutral. I’m too nice and never charge enough to really offset all of my costs, but whatever.
That would give me 1, 3 and 4 (to a degree). That’s scary though. With little savings (at least little when you have a wife and kid, thinking about all of the possible unforeseen expenses there) and only one income source (my salary), I don’t feel that it would be a prudent choice to do that. Simply stated, there’s too much that could go wrong with no safety net and I would have to seek out and find any and all support structures for starting this business.
I’d would like, sometime, to do something like that or freelance, but I know I need some more structure and experience before completely jumping off the deck. If nothing else, need to make it a hobby that produces a side income first.
I started thinking about other churches or non-profits, but quickly dismissed that thought. Moving into something similar than what I’ve been doing, while safe, wouldn’t be different enough to meet my objectives.
While all of this thought is going on, I’ve been increasing being more active with the Knights of Columbus. Originally, I joined the St. Ignatius council, built and currently operate their website. The UCC started a new push to reactive their dormant council and as part of that, I was convinced to serve as the Financial Secretary for the new council, something that is actually fun and I’m enjoying.
The Knights of Columbus is a fraternal benefits society, which means they exist to give benefit to their members. In their case, the Knights offer life insurance, annuities and long-term care insurance to their members and I met a few different field agents who work toward that aspect of the Knights.
I found my way into contact with the General Agent for this area who told me more about the position and that they were looking for someone in Austin. It would allow me to office from home while meeting with families in their homes. My schedule would be flexible, as long as I get the work done. The salary starting off is in the right ballpark. The mission of ensuring the financial well-being of a family after a death is important to me.
For those that don’t know, my father, the sole-income source for my family, died when I was 12 years old; without his life insurance, I have zero idea how my family would have survived. Losing him was incredibly hard emotionally, but financially, he had planned well-enough to ensure that we had enough to make ends meet.
If you add up working from home, with a flexible schedule, suitable income and a cause I care about, it resulted in a possibility with real merit. Vanessa and I talked. The Knights and I talked. I will soon be the newest Knights of Columbus Field Agent.