It’s #yrittäjänpäivä on Wednesday, but I decided to take this whole week to share some input on my take on entrepreneurship. I’m approaching my four year business anniversary, with good and less good times, both as a motivation to myself and readers, Helsinki freelancers and entrepreneurs, and while I’m definitely not the wisest person to give you any life advice at all, I’m here to share and rant and all that jazz.
To get y’all kickstarted on this week, I’m gonna begin with my story, just as a quick reminder for those who’ve been around for a while, and as a quick summary of what this is all about for thew newbies on Luminoucity.
I came to Helsinki as an exchange student in 2010. I did my bachelors degree in tourism management at Haaga-Helia university of Applied Sciences, which was part of my double degree business & tourism studies, and that was supposed to have me in the city for a year. During which, I realised that I loved this place so much so I wanted to stay, but I also didn’t have anything to go back to really.
My studies were almost completed save for one course and my thesis, after a tiring fight with German bureaucracy (my home university is in Germany) I found a transferable class in Helsinki. I was working a full-time internship at the time and pushed my thesis a little further, for time reasons but I also wanted to commit to a thesis project I was really enthusiastic about. Too many of my peers had to force themselves to get the thesis out of the way, but for something this time consuming and intense I didn’t want it to feel like a burden but like something that would actually bring me career opportunities. I eventually wrote my thesis in cooperation with the Visit Helsinki tourism board and Spotted by Locals, which is a series of city blogs – and that’s basically how this whole thing with influencer marketing started for me.
I met Inna-Pirjetta Lahti in the summer of 2014, who gave me the opportunity to join a project of hers, the Nordic Bloggers’ Experience, a couple of months later. From there, things just kinda went on their own and here I am.
Why did I become self-employed?
This is probably not the most advisable thing to do, but I kinda fell into it. With the chance to join the project with Inna, self-employment seemed like the easiest way to handle this situation, and I really didn’t think about it too much. Young and naive, I say! Becoming your own boss in Finland is the easiest thing in the world, you fill out two forms and transfer a bit of money and bam, that’s it.
What I do, and where I’m headed
I’ve been really fortunate to be able to combine my passion for travel and event management, which is where my heart has always been. I love creating and sharing great experiences and bringing people together. I’ve been involved in some major content marketing campaigns for different clients, I’ve run small events from meetings to trade show operations, I’ve curated conference programs and done participant management, including on-site, hand-on work. Some speaking engagements and hosting jobs have been part of this, and some side hustles such as freelance tour guiding have been great to feel more comfortable speaking in front of crowds.
Where I’m going with all of this is a great question that I ask myself every day! I have to say so far I’ve been really fortunate to be able to really do the work I love, with people I admire and adore. Let’s see where it’s going. For the first time in a while I’m in a position where I have the mind capacity to focus on the future without just swirling around in the present because there was so much to do. So while that’s a little scary, I’m curious to see what’s next.
What’s coming here then?
I’m starting #entrepreneursweek / #yrittäjänviikko today with a blog post every day for the week to come. I’ll share things like my work routines and essentials, places to work, how to deal with stress and discouragement and some other things that I would also like to read from others! So I hope I’ll see you back here. Remember to follow me over on Instagram where I’ve also relaunched my feed with a collage layout (which, may I say, is pretty cool).
So take a note.