BIO | How to use the crisis as an opportunity: from investment banker to travel blogger


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The story of Keith Jenkins could be a symbol of the current situation in which the financial crisis is bringing about social change. Because Keith was an investment banker for 10 years - until he decided to follow his dreams and passions and make the crisis a chance. occupations pictures

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Keith is anything but a dreamy spinner: When I met him at 2011 in September at the GoMedia conference in Edmonton, Canada, to which both of us were invited, he looked like someone who knows what he wants Has goals - and knows how he realizes them.

And yet, Keith 2008 has done something for which many people would think him crazy: he gave up his safe and, above all, outstandingly paid job to travel around the world. 2009, he has published his experiences and motivations quite honestly in the new-page e-book Travelations: the trip that opened my eyes, which you can read for free on the Internet (and it is really worth reading!)

The job is changing people

In it he describes how working as an investment banker at a Dutch bank had gradually changed his life, but also him as a person, and how he himself only worked as an auto pilot as a good “corporate citizen”. And how the fast-paced banking business was starting to tire him.

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Then his employer was taken over by a consortium: a decisive experience for him, because even if one offered him a job, everything, which he had worked for years, was gone away.

Suddenly free - and now?

After a few months, in which Keith gave the good banker to the outside, and in his heart thought about throwing everything down, the dismissal followed. That was, Keith writes, the simpler part. Only with the sudden freedom did he have difficulties: Imagine the feeling: it's all in your hands, it's all in your hands

I find another job again

So Keith took a break for the first time - and a trip around the world for which he had never had time before: he bought a luxurious round-the-world ticket, booked a few tours and hotels in advance and saw what happened.

For the money or what would happen after his return, he did not worry - because he had always had so far. In addition, in the first two months of his five-month trip around the world, he received daily job offers for banks in Frankfurt, Zurich, London or Amsterdam. One of these he would accept after his return.

The goal: self-discovery!

His goal was a different one: To find oneself: First of all, I wanted to 're-discover'myself through self-reflection. What makes me happy? What makes me happy? What am I passionate about? These were some of thequestions I pondered over the course of the next five months.

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The career end

And then came the Lehman crash in autumn 2008. Keith was on a yacht in the Great Barrier Reef when he heard of it. Practically immediately the job offers stopped. And Keith began to worry about his future. But first he wanted to enjoy his journey: It slowly began to sink into that of mycareer in banking what probably over. I could not do that. It was a new challenge but one I wasdetermined to postpone until after my trip.

Experiences and inspiration

In the following months, Keith had a lot of experience: he learned to meditate and fight his fears of heights and sharks by faced directly with his fears. He met inspiring people. And he learned to travel alone, which required him special abilities: New things were learned every day. Travelling alone, I became very self-sufficient. I organized my transportation, accommodation, and tours; plannedmy budget; learned to keep an eye on my expenditures and cut down when Ineeded to; and became better at management. I started to appreciate andapply. When I feel like I'm going to have a good time, I've got a good time. Every day what a priceless lesson.

The right attitude is not enough

After all the positive experiences, Keith returned to Amsterdam in the middle of winter. He was happy, self-confident and full of confidence, to be able to work again successfully.

But optimism and the right attitude were not enough: Keith found no new job. He had no idea what to do instead. And gradually he became depressed. The world had changed.

What do I really want?

But Keith had also changed. A new trip to his family to Malaysia helped him to his feet again. And he wondered what I really want? Where are my passions and my abilities? What are my passions? What career experience did Ihave? What am I good at? How much money would I need to earn? Did I want to go out on my own or work at a company?

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New career as a blogger

His answer was the Velvet Escape travel blog, which started soon after and which allowed him to combine his two passions, travel and writing. But, he tells me in Canada, Keith has also worked out a business plan from the start, such as how he could make money with it, for example through advertising or sponsorship.

From now on, he wrote full-time about his travel experiences. He noted that improvisational skills are one of the most important skills in blogging. But he also appreciates very much the opportunity to be with the full dedication and whole heart with the thing, which he likes.

And it is precisely this energy, in my opinion, that makes it so successful. Good luck!


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  1. Alice

    Nice! Thank you so much! Thank you for sharing. Your blog posts are more interesting and informative.

  2. Tyron Magsamen

    Yes, finally found a cool blog again and gebookmarket.

  3. Future trend UnWork - Part 1: Dream job instead of labor? »Imgriff.com

    [...] some who have successfully taken this step: For example, the well-paid investment banker who earns less money as a travel blogger, but is all the more satisfied. The sports scientist who gave her [...]

  4. ictjob.de

    How to Use the Crisis as an Opportunity: From Investment Banker to Travel Blogger »By Simone Janson»

  5. Simone Janson

    Hello Melvin,
    Thanks for the comment. I thought it was a great story too - and I'm thrilled about the response! You are probably right about the simplicity ;-)

  6. Melvin

    Thanks Simone for the great report about Keith! I've known Keith since he started blogging & I'm very happy to count him among my friends. He is really in top shape & his blog is really recommendable.

    Keith is a good example of doing what you really enjoy doing. This is not necessarily the easiest way in life, but if it were easy, everyone would do it. ;-)

  7. Holger Froese

    How to use the crisis as an opportunity: From investment banker to travel blogger #Business

  8. Peter van Dam

    German readers: Here's @simonejanson interviewing banker-turned-blogger @velvetescape at # GoMedia2011 #TravelBlogging

  9. Keith Jenkins - Filmography by type

    German readers: Here's @simonejanson interviewing banker-turned-blogger @velvetescape at # GoMedia2011 #TravelBlogging

  10. Michael

    rt @jools_octavius ​​Here's @SimoneJanson interviewing banker-turned-blogger @velvetescape # GoMedia2011 #TravelBlogging

  11. Elena DR

    German readers: Here's @simonejanson interviewing banker-turned-blogger @velvetescape at # GoMedia2011 #TravelBlogging

  12. Jools Stone

    German readers: Here's @simonejanson interviewing banker-turned-blogger @velvetescape at # GoMedia2011 #TravelBlogging

  13. nikki bayley

    and of course @jools_octavius ​​on #gomedia in travelllll

  14. ralf johnen

    and of course @jools_octavius ​​on #gomedia in travelllll

  15. ralf johnen

    @nikkibayley @technomade @jools_octavius ​​@velvetescape story about #keithjenkins by #gomedia participant @simonejanson

  16. Liane Wolffgang

    How to Use the Crisis as an Opportunity: From Investment Banker to Travel Blogger: The Story of Keith Jenkins ...

  17. Competencepartner

    How to Use the Crisis as an Opportunity: From Investment Banker to Travel Blogger: The Story of ...

  18. Simone Janson

    Great story about an #Investment banker who gives up his job to travel around the world and to #bloggen:

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