Trades Cooperative

So yesterday I watched a video of a startup webinar from the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives. What the presenter is talking about seems a lot bigger than what I’m thinking of, but in the Q&A portion, he did say that 3-7 members to start off was a good size, so maybe not.

I’m thinking of a trades cooperative, with an administrator (me, since that’s my skill), an electrician, a plumber, and a carpenter. Maybe one other, since I like an odd number for voting purposes. A brick-and-tile specialist?

I’ve noticed that a lot of independent tradespeople lack the organization to do things like follow up on estimates or reschedule appointments, adjust schedules, that sort of thing. That’s got to be costing them a lot of business.

And while they keep all the proceeds when freelancing, they have to fool with all the stuff that’s outside their skillset. Banding together in a cooperative sounds like a way better alternative than taking employment at a typical business. The pay would be better and profit is shared. And they don’t answer the phone or manage the calendar or send the invoices.

Could I start by freelancing the administration? And then after doing a good job for a while, sell them on the security of a coop, with the benefits of things like health insurance.

Patently Insane

I was looking up trades administration to see if it’s a thing, and not only is it a thing, they offer bachelor’s degrees in it.

The whole thing is patently insane. I found this page at Capitol Technology University in Maryland — I had to go look up where they were because I was sure they must be talking about Canadian dollars in this image:

I want to ask them, “Are you completely insane?” You want people in the DC area, with a cost of living surely higher than mine in coastal Carolina, to obtain a bachelor’s degree so they can aspire to make a pittance and barely get by? Those last two salaries are probably sufficient down here, but they can’t be up there, and the rest of them represent struggle even here.

Why would I go in hock for an education to make just enough to continue struggling? This is crazy!

And then again, those salaries are for employment. If the administrator were working for a coop with profit sharing, that could be a lot better.

But I’m still not falling for this degree nonsense.

I should point out that this degree is meant to be sought after by people “working the industrial trades who want to start and manage their own businesses.” So this is supposed to be supplemental education for those who already got proficiency at their trade. And yet the above makes it look like a step down for their livelihood rather than a step up.

Current Six Subjects

My Program of Recovery

  • Meetings
  • Sponsorship
  • Step work
  • Daily reading
  • Slogans
  • Service 

My Employment

  • SAP Administration
  • HANA Administration
  • Sybase
  •  Libelle System Copy
  • Oracle
  • Linux Administration
  • Windows Administration

Physical Education

  • Zumba
  •  Tai Chi
    • Qi Gong

Racial Work

Religion – Christianity

Religion – Unitarian Universalism

Utah Resident

Moving from Utah to North Carolina is a no-go. And it’s for the dumbest reason ever.

My employer doesn’t contract with one health insurance provider, but with two. Which you get is determined by what state you live in. If I want to keep my insurer but be in the NC region, I’d have to move to SC or VA.

So dumb.

So far now, the move is canceled and I remain a Utah resident merely visiting. I may yet move to MS or NM, since those are on the same carrier.

I know it looks like I’m being silly and difficult, but I changed insurance providers 5 times in 4 years and it sucked a lot. Everything got messed up all the time and no doctor trusts another doctor’s diagnosis and just screw it.

Six Subjects: Prepare for the Next Role, Part Deux

So, you know how The Big Plan includes finding a better paying job and then finding a remote work job later, with the desire that both be the same job? Well I got a new job.

It’s not a better paying job. In fact, it’s slightly worse in that department because it’s salaried instead of hourly wage. And it’s not officially a remote work job. However, after the training period, I am allowed to work remotely, which is a huge development. It means I can finally get a dog. And possibly it means I can do the recon work in Arizona for my desert base.

It’ll mean actually fixing things, and it’s a multi-disciplinary role, so it’s fixing several sorts of things. Tonight is my last night on the service desk, and then everything changes. Again.

Including my Six Subjects, because now my “next role” is also my current role while I’m getting up to speed. Which opens room for a new 6th subject. And that’s a good thing because I’m studying shooting and hunting now.

My Program of Recovery

  • Meetings
  • Sponsorship
  • Step work
  • Daily reading
  • Slogans
  • Service

My Employment

  • SAP Netweaver
  • HANA
  • Oracle
  • Sybase
  • MS SQL
  • MySQL
  • SQL Anywhere
  • Windows Server
  • Red Hat Linux 

Civics

Physical Education

Shooting and Hunting

  • Rifle
  • Pistol
  • Shotgun
  • Deer
  • Small game

Spanish