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Getting started without "skills" in business?


Jazen Jaxxon
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I'm still so interested in this world, even after all of these years... however, I've found one thing that is incredibly disheartening.  

There is really no way to get ahead in business here without a lot of talent.  I'm a people person, but we all know clubs are just time/money sinks.  

I've got 3D Modeling programs, but I wasn't any good with them in college and I'm not any good with them now.  I'm not a Photoshop wizard.  I don't know LSL.

I've been here over six years, and I'm completely lost.  I'm actually starting to combine aspects of my RL (I'm an ordained minister) to try something new just because I'm out of ideas for trying to stay on the grid. :(

I don't know if I'm just extremely jaded or what, but I never liked clubs in this world anyway, and definitely not working in them.  If that is really all that is going to be out there for someone without a degree in graphics design... this might be it for me in SL. :(  

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Hey Jazen...

Sorry to hear that you're disheartened inworld. I will admit that MANY of the jobs in SL require "adult" skils or building skills. And I understand your concerns about both of them. but...I would check the inworld employment section of the forum. There might be something there for you..like:

 http://community.secondlife.com/t5/Inworld-Employment/Brooklyn-Kennels-is-Hiring/m-p/2305789

Also, if you're a true ordained Minister, you might advertise on here and inworld to perform weddings or christenings of new babies and things like that. Get in touch with some of the churches in SL and see if you can advertise there or they could put you in touch with the right people.

The most important thing in here, though, is to have fun. Remember, you can always get lindens...they're not that expensive..but you have to enjoy being here otherwise, it's not worth it.

Good luck.

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Jazen Jaxxon wrote:

I'm still so interested in this world, even after all of these years... however, I've found one thing that is incredibly disheartening.  

There is really no way to get ahead in business here without a lot of talent.  I'm a people person, but we all know clubs are just time/money sinks.  

 

I've got 3D Modeling programs, but I wasn't any good with them in college and I'm not any good with them now.  I'm not a Photoshop wizard.  I don't know LSL.

 

I've been here over six years, and I'm completely lost.  I'm actually starting to combine aspects of my RL (I'm an ordained minister) to try something new just because I'm out of ideas for trying to stay on the grid.
:(

I don't know if I'm just extremely jaded or what, but I never liked clubs in this world anyway, and definitely not working in them.  If that is really all that is going to be out there for someone without a degree in graphics design... this might be it for me in SL.
:(
 

I don't know what your denomination is, but The Anglican Church of Second Life was looking for more people to conduct one of the daily prayer services and/or possibly help with the Sunday service.  The link *should* go to the Leadership team which will give you an idea of the RL backgrounds of the current leadership team.

All faiths are welcome; one of the former worship leaders is a Methodist pastor.

Just a suggestion. ;)

As far as doing something else - when I began SL in 2007 I had absolutely NO skills in building, had never used a graphics program, etc.  I have been an instructor RL so I joined one of the SL schools (which no longer exists) as an instructor until they closed and LOVED doing that, so that is another idea.

In 2008 I decided I wanted to learn to build and began taking building classes, sometimes up to three/day.  I also enrolled in a 10-week course to learn Gimp (which I took a total of three times - graphics programs did NOT come easy to me) and began making some very simple items which led to my opening a small store in world.  I closed my store in world last December but still sell some items on the MP - usually enough to pay tier for the parcel on which I live.  I have no idea how to make sculpties nor mesh, but I purchased a couple sculpt maps for a few of my items, which are not currently listed on the MP and were created for various hunts.

Bottom line is, depending on where your interests are, there are ways to work/earn money in SL.   Oh another idea - I see ads in the employment section a lot for managers to help with estate sims.  Don't give up if you really want to pursue a job in SL. :)

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Well, I was actually looking in to starting up an online ministry, but with their payment processor changes, my non-verified Paypal is now essentially worthless.

I do have some base skills in Photoshop to do basic photo editing and the like, but as far as creation goes, even if I have something I'd like to build or the like -- its already been done.

At the same time, I don't want to "work for" someone else.  

In reply to one of the posters, yes I am a fully ordained minister, so I could do that, but again, it costs to get started.  I would love to start up a spiritual center to offer spiritual aid to shut-ins and just those looking for online spiritual "services" and of course I understand that weddings and the like are very popular here, but I'm not a skilled builder to offer any type of beautiful surroundings or the like.

I don't even know if this was the right forum to post in, but regardless, I thank you both for your replies.  I am just jaded, I guess... and I don't really know where to start anymore with this world.  I do have PhotoShop, GIMP, Blender, and I even have Maya from my wife.  Interested in photography (I own PhotoLife studio for instance), clothing, building, etc, etc.

All the tutorials released lately are generally outdated or use old tools.  I was working on trying to do some clothing the other day in PhotoShop and someone I told about it essentially laughed at me that I was working with prims instead of mesh, essentially.

TL;DR: I *want* to stay in this world and try to make a difference in some way... but at this point I don't have "non-internet" money to contribute into the game and my PayPal won't work here.  So essentially I *must* create.  Not that I want to work in the clubs anyway, but no one is going to hire a Reverend to host at their club...

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I guess my problem is not wanting to "work" but wanting to do my own venture.  I mean, that is part of the fun.  I guess I'm going to have to look up some of those classes you mentioned, if they are free.

I do have the desire to learn how to do all the graphical stuff that would allow me to create (PhotoShop and Blender) to where I'd actually be competitive in some market... I do have two accounts so I could use one in more "traditional" businesses and use my "main" account to start my spiritual center.

I guess part of the problem is that most of the jobs seem to be in unsavory places that I have no desire to work in, or they aren't steady work or worth the time for what you get paid.  I guess that is what I'm really getting at... that you must have real world talent to become any sort of content creator, and it kills a lot of the fun for me nowadays.  

I'm just babbling at this point... I've just been here a very hard time and its so hard to admit that I still really have no worthwhile skills in this place... :(

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I know this is a different blend of topics than we're used to having here, although possibly blunt but truely in the spirt of helpfulness I'd offer the following advice since we're not talking hobbies here, but paid occupation.

Your local pastor would say to get your house in order before attempting the ministry. I'm not sure which faith you subscribe to and of course that's non of my business. In most however, where the practical meets the spiritual the ethic revolves around hard work. An occupation in SL is no different. Running your own venture requires more hard work than a 40 hour work week in many cases.

You say you have little SL skills and then say that most places don't pay what the time is worth.

Your choices are to develop those SL skills, or support your ministry with your work from elsewhere.

It may sound harsh, but you can't minister to others if your own life is not in order. You need a very well rounded skillset for either the ministry or a career as a content creator. I'd say that a ministry is far more demanding, because it not only involves a healthy dose of experience, a healthy dose of theology, an understanding of psychology and counseling and a deep understanding of people. The one doesn't leave much time for the other.

Find your own balance before you attempt to balance others, or you'll do more harm than good. Whatever your path, you need to work on the basics first and go from there.

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I'm not trying to trivialize the work or skills, it's hard stuff. Design and some graphics work doesn't come easy for me personally either.

And no, it doesn't take much to reach out a hand to someone that needs it. In that sense we're all humans and all ministers to each other.

The ministry itself, however, is a different thing entirely and not something that should be undertaken online until you've spent some years of face time in the real world to be able to minister to the people behind the avatars in a spiritual leadership role.

Sorry, but this one is rather personal for me. Unless you've got a background, training, been a follower before being a leader, slung some slop in soup kitchens, held the hands of the sick and dying in hospitals, left lots of bags of groceries on porches for people who couldn't afford it, know the ins and outs of running non profits, done grief counseling, visited disabled people, etc. ... you're not qualified quite yet as a spiritual leader to avatars.

SL has some people with serious needs, and while friends and acts of kindness are always hugely helpful, an untrained spiritual leader is not. Of course that depends on what title and role you assign to yourself. There are some RL ministers here with that kind of background.

And then there's Pastor John Doe with the online ordination and just enough knowledge to be harmful to people who need serious counseling..

 

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Operating a business here requires a broad range of skills that are way more than just modeling and texturing.

 

I would say that being a people person is one of the key skills and one that many creators sometimes lack, as demonstrated by some appalling service that they give.

 

All you need are people skills and ideas so you have a fantastic starting point so focus on that.

 

Establish your ideas, where you want to be, what you want to do and find others to compliment that.

 

Find people who want to create but don't like talking to people, scriptors who don't ever want to interface with customers. (Plenty of these! Plus some who do but never should :) )

 

Although not without challenges, working with others can be a whole lot more fun and complimentary skills really brings more to your overall offering.

 

Every journey begins with the first step and failure is only guaranteed if you never try.

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Jazen Jaxxon wrote:

Well, I was actually looking in to starting up an online ministry, but with their payment processor changes, my non-verified Paypal is now essentially worthless.

<Snip>

In reply to one of the posters, yes I am a fully ordained minister, so I could do that, but again, it costs to get started.  I would love to start up a spiritual center to offer spiritual aid to shut-ins and just those looking for online spiritual "services" and of course I understand that weddings and the like are very popular here, but I'm not a skilled builder to offer any type of beautiful surroundings or the like.


I appreciate and applaud what you would like to do in SL; on the topic of online ministries and/or spiritual centers, there are a number of established ministries in SL (and in this group I am including those who have RL oversight from their denominational leadership, ie. the Anglican Church of SL to which I referred is under the RL guidance of a Bishop in England) to all manner of more casual faith/spiritual centers.  There is an area in SL that offers signs/landmarks/infos to a broad array of spiritual locations in SL.  It is called something like The Spiritual Gateway.  I just tried to go in world to find it but got a message that log ins have been temporarily suspended.  Will check it out later.  Smaller ministries also exist in SL that offer counseling, etc.

My point being, pretty much anything you can think of doing in SL is being done in some fashion; I still think your visiting and speaking to the leaders in some of the established ministries in SL would be positive for you.  If you don't want to become a part of their ministries, at least you would gain some valuable insight in what is currently being done, etc.  I have collected quite a bit of information/locations on this front over the years which I would be happy to share with you if you would IM me in world as I could miss a post here.

Oh, on the offering spiritual aid to shut-ins - quite a few SL residents are disabled and of those, quite a number are bedridden.  For them, SL is one way to enjoy a social life and/or do things they could not do in RL ie. dance, swim, etc.  Unless a given person self-identifies in this manner, others in SL would never know that.  I recently attended a large gathering of SL content creators where someone mentioned in the course of the discussion that they are bedbound most of the time and creating in SL is how they can make money.  Unlike RL (or offline) where someone who spends most of their time in bed simply cannot easily go out to seek, in your words "spiritual aid," in SL it is quite easy to seek that and do anything any other SL avatar can do. 

I am not trying to discourage you but perhaps provide a bit of insight.


Jazen Jaxxon wrote:

 

I don't even know if this was the right forum to post in, but regardless, I thank you both for your replies.
 I am just jaded, I guess...
and I don't really know where to start anymore with this world.  I do have PhotoShop, GIMP, Blender, and I even have Maya from my wife.  Interested in photography (I own PhotoLife studio for instance), clothing, building, etc, etc.

All the tutorials released lately are generally outdated or use old tools.
 I was working on trying to do some clothing the other day in PhotoShop and someone I told about it essentially laughed at me that I was working with prims instead of mesh, essentially.

 

TL;DR: I *want* to stay in this world and try to make a difference in some way... but at this point
I don't have "non-internet" money to contribute into the game
and my PayPal won't work here.  So essentially I *must* create.  Not that I want to work in the clubs anyway, but no one is going to hire a Reverend to host at their club...

(Bolding mine)

 

 

*What about SL or your experience in it has caused you to become jaded?

*There are still people in SL who, especially with regards to clothing, PREFER non-mesh.  I still use prims only, with the few exception where I purchased sculpt maps for a couple of builds; I haven't uploaded anything new to the MP in quite awhile and, my builds are extremely simple but, as I mentioned previously, I still sell enough to wholely or in large part cover my parcel tier.  If it got to the point I could no longer do so I would either choose to add more items and/or re-open my in world store (although even with an in world from 2008-2012, 99.9% of my sales have always been from XStreet/MP) ~or~ give up the parcel

*There are a LOT of wonderful freebies in SL these days ranging from designer promotions (usually just by joining their group) to the myriads of hunts in SL, thus it really isn't necessary to have lindens in SL to have fun.  As in RL, it helps, but also as in RL some of the people wealthiest in money are miserable.

As for knowing where to start - if you enjoy building, my suggestion would be to start attending some classes - Builders Brewery holds quite a few classes but there are others if you check out Events-Education on either your website dashboard or in your viewer.  Don't know what to build?  I didn't either and many of the items I sell came as ideas from the classes I took.

Again, I am open to speaking with you in world if you wish.  It sounds like you're in a SL-ump (happens to many of us) and want to find something to kickstart your enthusiasm again.  I do wish you much luck. :)

ETA: Tagging onto something Dart mentioned - I personally would be highly sceptical of a person in SL purporting to offer "spiritual help" without some fairly tangible evidence of qualifications. Once again, using The Anglican Church of SL as an example, mainly because it is the ministry with which I am most familiar within SL, as you saw they have a website that includes who the leaders of the SL ministry are as well as RL photos/names of most of them.  My education and professional background is in the area of mental health counseling and I am well-aware of the credentials needed to be a practicing counselor in my state (which is fairly similar to most of the US states) including an active state license and, in the early phases of one's profession, accountability to a more experienced counselor.  As Dart said, even a well-meaning person can do a great deal of emotional/spiritual damage to another. 

I don't know anything about you other than this post, but I keep getting the sense, especially if you have been in SL a long time, as evidenced by having a legacy last name, that you might just need a bit of a break from SL.  I have taken breaks from SL of varying durations over the years, my last one lasting about nine months. (I did continue to provide customer service to those who purchased my items as needed.)  Sometimes just stepping away a bit clears the mind and permits a fresh perspective. (Not trying to suggest you leave...just another idea if you are in "burn out" mode. :) )

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Sassy Romano wrote:

Operating a business here requires a broad range of skills that are way more than just modeling and texturing.

 

I would say that being a people person is one of the key skills and one that many creators sometimes lack, as demonstrated by some appalling service that they give.

 


I am an introvert. And yet most of my professional life was spent "on stage" as a schoolteacher, performing in that role to keep the attention of my audience, and interacting one on one all day long.  Now, I perform in the role of Pamela Galli, creator and store owner, which involves providing cheerful and efficient customer service.  Anyone can provide excellent customer service who cares about doing the job well.

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Jazen Jaxxon wrote:

 

 

I've got 3D Modeling programs, but I wasn't any good with them in college and I'm not any good with them now.  I'm not a Photoshop wizard.  I don't know LSL.

 

 

 

To me "not any good" = "has not practiced enough", unless we are talking about being in the Olympics or performing at the Metropolitan Opera.

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I would advise you to start working for someone else before going on your own, it will provide you with useful experience without the pressure and big responsibility. I run my own business and the majority of the time I spent on it is not about content creation but about marketing, customer service, landscapaing, building up and retaining connections and often being a mother, sister and a best friend to my staff people. 

Opening your own venture can be done in a few days but once you find the suitable land, all builds and furniture, and make your own rules there is a big chance you will find yourself sitting on the empty entrance and thinking okay I have my own business and what now??

First you have to get yourself a certain number of people who value your work enough to follow you wherever you go (and bring their friends too), then you can say byebye to your current boss and go work alone. 

Meantime you can try all sorts of businesses that are not hosting or doing sex related things. I hire sales representatives, so if you're interested in that just search for my studio. Or you can be a land agent, write for some magazine, do the marketing for various businesses or even be someone's personal assistant. Each of these jobs will give you the opportunity to meet good and quality people and slowly learn useful things for future.

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Thanks, didn't mean to "preach" there. But right, I'm a PK and then later a P for some years (those of you in the know, know what that means), but always in the shadow of the real deal. Some years of forced service, then not so forced and then willing and then 20 or so years of lost faith and finally coming to terms with my own path.

Big believer in mutual spiritual support, but in the leadership role you inevitably come across people that need serious relationship or suicide or grief or personal counseling. You just can't avoid it. You can't offer someone with a terminal illness proper guidance "as" a leader without having done time in hospitals or hospice and know something about medicine and pain management etc.

It takes years of knowledge and experience out there in the real world to do it online properly, especially because you don't have the indicators of body language, viewing the background of the person firsthand, knowing how to identify psychological characteristics, etc. You're operating partially blind here in SL, and that requires its own set of skills.

I've only shared some of that with Darrius a couple years ago, when we took some things private to reconsile some differences and he was err ... kind enough to blast some of my hypocrisy back at me with both barrels loaded with salt and buckshot. An odd way to pay it forward, but there it is, heheh.

Being a pro content creator on the other hand is a somewhat more forgiving path. I don't think any of us started out with professional experience in all areas of content creation. Learning by doing is a rewarding way to earn those battle scars.

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Dartagan Shepherd wrote:

I'm not trying to trivialize the work or skills, it's hard stuff. Design and some graphics work doesn't come easy for me personally either.

And no, it doesn't take much to reach out a hand to someone that needs it. In that sense we're all humans and all ministers to each other.

The ministry itself, however, is a different thing entirely and not something that should be undertaken online until you've spent some years of face time in the real world to be able to minister to the people behind the avatars in a spiritual leadership role.

Sorry, but this one is rather personal for me. Unless you've got a background, training, been a follower before being a leader, slung some slop in soup kitchens, held the hands of the sick and dying in hospitals, left lots of bags of groceries on porches for people who couldn't afford it, know the ins and outs of running non profits, done grief counseling, visited disabled people, etc. ... you're not qualified quite yet as a spiritual leader to avatars.

SL has some people with serious needs, and while friends and acts of kindness are always hugely helpful, an untrained spiritual leader is not. Of course that depends on what title and role you assign to yourself. There are some RL ministers here with that kind of background.

And then there's Pastor John Doe with the online ordination and just enough knowledge to be harmful to people who need serious counseling..

 

Did you miss in the OP where they said they were an ordained minister? I think they may have the skills to preach in SL..

ETA.. wow, the local parish near my house doesn't see the minister except on sundays.. How many ministers do you know of that do all that and how do you know the OP hasn't done all that?

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Right, I keep my ordination license as well since I've left my denomination strictly for emergencies if there is absolutely no one else around.

It costs me time to fill out a form, and 50 bucks a year.

As to how I know this is an online ordination. I just do.

ETA: As far as ministers that do what I mentioned, I can take you to yearly conferences and point out 40,000 ministers and their families that do this and much more day after day. What do you think those ministers do when they're not preaching at you? At least the good ones.

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Dartagan Shepherd wrote:

Right, I keep my ordination license as well since I've left my denomination strictly for emergencies if there is absolutely no one else around.

It costs me time to fill out a form, and 50 bucks a year.

As to how I know this is an online ordination. I just do.

ETA: As far as ministers that do what I mentioned, I can take you to yearly conferences and point out 40,000 ministers and their families that do this and much more day after day. What do you think those ministers do when they're not preaching at you? At least the good ones.

Well, I don't have my own congregation in real life, and my ordination was an online ordination.  I've also been ordained for nearly 10 years now, and I minister to the homebound mainly.  I also do a lot of work at soup kitchens and I do a ton of work with those that are suffering with or trying to defeat addiction.  I regularly perform weddings and have unfortunately taken care of quite a few funerals as well.

So yeah, I do quite a bit more than just fill out my form to maintain my ordination.  While I understand your skepticism, especially online -- I'm not looking towards ministering online as a "business", I just figured it was one thing I could do in this world with skills I already have that could be of use to other people.

I actually followed a lot of the advice in this thread.  I interviewed for a position as a land agent last night and I think I will have the job by this afternoon... that will enable me to save up enough to get land to not only setup a small ministry in an effort to help others -- but also to perhaps pursue other business ventures as well.

The original post was just me being jaded because after around 7-8 years here (I had another previous account that lapsed and was never revived) it just seemed to me that there wasn't anything I could really do that was worthwhile without having graphical design skills, and I have absolutely NO desire to be involved with the club scene whatsoever... except if maybe as an advisor or consultant as I know everything that goes into running them successfully.

As to the person that said "not being good" = "not practiced enough" in regards to graphical design -- you are absolutely right, but I also don't have any ideas for things to create, either.  It is hard to practice when you have no plan in the first place.  I do try, but it is hard as a very unskilled person without that plan.  If I had ideas of things to try, I'd probably be much more practiced! :D

 

Regardless if posts were met with skepticism or helpful advice, I do appreciate all of your replies and will take them all to heart.  Also, if you welcomed me to contact you in world, please be on the lookout for my request.  I was more looking for conversation on this topic than anything else, and was pleasantly surprised to see so many responses upon logging in.

Thank you all so much, and I wish you all a great day!

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Jazen Jaxxon wrote:

As to the person that said "not being good" = "not practiced enough" in regards to graphical design -- you are absolutely right, but I also don't have any ideas for things to create, either.  It is hard to practice when you have no plan in the first place.  I do try, but it is hard as a very unskilled person without that plan.  If I had ideas of things to try, I'd probably be much more practiced!
:D

 

 

 

Yes that is an entirely different thing. You must not only have ideas and inspiration but almost a complusion to create.  If you do, then you will get plenty of practice.

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Dartagan Shepherd wrote:

[...]

I've only shared some of that with Darrius a couple years ago, when we took some things private to reconsile some differences and he was err ... kind enough to blast some of my hypocrisy back at me with both barrels loaded with salt and buckshot. An odd way to pay it forward, but there it is, heheh.

[...]

*grinz* In my defense .. I've always said that the truest friends were those willing to holler "Your fly is down" from across the room.

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  • 2 weeks later...

 I have been around for long time and seen, experienced various things relating to SL.

I got its not that easy even you got talent and creativity.

I have recalled in past that there have several spiritual based communities that had discussions, workshops on various topics.

Big part you sort of need place to meet and I don't know how much these people make in donations.

I  don't know, I know I didn't have whole lot when I go to new agey meditation group and their discussion group  for a while there.

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