Hi, I’m Lee; welcome to the learn Life Money blog; my goal is to help people with their financial education and to help business owners achieve the goals they always dreamed about.
I started this blog to help people do just that; most people don’t want handouts. They want the tools to go out and achieve their dreams themselves; I aim to help others along that journey by using my life and business experiences to help and guide them to the heights they want to achieve in life and in business.
For a long time, in fact, for as long as I can recall, I have always been interested in business and finance; the TV programs I watched were always financial or business documentaries. Heck, I was even shortlisted for the BBC Apprentice back in 2018.
All of the books I read are about finance, business, or investing or an autobiography from an entrepreneur; people often commented on this, that I am addicted!
I have always been a doer; I do what I say I am going to do, I am not afraid of making mistakes, and I believe confidence is the key contributor to the success I have had during my career, not being afraid of making mistakes is a vital attribute of an entrepreneur.
My career started on a wonky footing, though; I was good at science at school, so my career advisors guided me into a science-based role, which involved working for a household pharmaceutical brand.
I soon realized this was not the job I was really passionate about, the days were repetitive, and I could only see myself doing this for a little while until I found something else.
As soon as another opportunity arose, I grabbed it with both hands. Leaving was a hard decision for me at this age because my career path was a good one, but I needed to make the decision quickly and decisively so early in my career if I didn’t want to continue down the wrong path.
But it just wasn’t for me; by this time, I was nearly 18, and I landed a modern apprenticeship with another household name on one of the most prestigious apprenticeship schemes in the city at the time.
There were hundreds of applicants for the role, and I got one of the three available apprenticeships. I was starting my career as a mechanical design engineer or, as some people will probably know it better, a product designer.
I did enjoy my time doing this, it was challenging, and there was a lot to learn; I put my all into it and won apprentice of the year two years out of my 4-year apprenticeship. I learned quickly and was productive from day one, which is, I think, what the company liked about me.
On a personal note, I love to travel, love to play golf, love F1, guitars and watches, I also love to make Sushi, and cook my own pizzas in our pizza oven and I love spending time with my wife and daughter.
I have travelled extensively for business and pleasure, I love to go to new places and meet new people and network with new and exciting people to talk about business, finance, and investing.
I developed my passion for business at an early age, I started my first side hustle when I was 19 years old; I started a business delivering legal documents for local law firms, known as process serving, you could get paid good money for handing people court documents, and I think you still can.
The documents couldn’t be delivered by mail as the person receiving them could claim they had yet to receive them. Hence, you needed someone to identify the person and hand them the documents, and then you swear an affidavit that they had received the documents so they couldn’t say they hadn’t in court.
I did this for a while alongside my current product designer job; Then, I ventured into my first internet-based business when I was about 21. This was an online gadget shop selling remote control cars and helicopters, and the other kinds of things you find in the gadget shops, like small quirky electronic gifts.
I made a mistake with this business, though, and I bought a tonne of stock on day one. All of the manufacturers had high minimum order quantities. But I figured I wouldn’t have a business if I didn’t have the stock, so I bought a room full of stuff without negotiating prices and minimum orders because I didn’t have the negotiating experience.
I now had a room full of stock I needed to sell through the website. I only had a little money to spend on marketing because I had spent it all on the stock, so I needed a free way to try and make people aware of this store to buy my products.
This was when I started learning SEO. As I said, I am a quick learner, so I picked this up quite quickly, applied it to the website, got some good rankings, and the business started to take off.
Wrapping products, shipping products, and dealing with customer queries soon became a bit of a hassle for me, so I ran this business for a while, then sold it with all of the stock to another company for a tidy profit, and this was my first experience of starting a business from scratch and selling it.
After this, because I had gained some experience in SEO (search engine optimization), I decided to start a company that offered this service to other companies—helping them rank on Google to sell more products.
In all my businesses to this point, I was always reluctant to take on staff, so I always just did all of the work myself; I could never trust any other people to do the work for me, so I worked long hours and did all the work myself. I was working full-time, doing the SEO stuff on the side, and burning out, so I sold my client list and moved on.
So then I decided to stick to my trade and start my own business as a freelance product designer in 2007, using my engineering skills but to line my own pockets rather than someone else’s. I built the business up to having four employees and one part-time employee at some nice offices in the city.
In 2015 a company approached me from Abu Dhabi; they wanted me to sell my product design/engineering business to them and go and work for them directly as a consultant running a UK and UAE office and moving into Oil and Gas design.
I worked in Abu Dhabi for quite a lot for months while my employees were taking care of the other projects within the engineering business, I was using Skype to manage them, and this continued for a few months, this was before Skype and Zoom became the norm.
While I was working in Abu Dhabi, because I am a huge Formula One fan; I had to go to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, well who wouldn’t?
I have been to many Formula One events around the globe, such as China, Malaysia, Belgium, Barcelona, Valencia, and of course Silverstone in the UK.
The time I spent in Abu Dhabi was one of the best life experiences I’ve ever had, rubbing shoulders with the F1 elite. I bumped into Daniel Ricciardo in a restaurant in Yas Mall, and over the F1 weekend, I met other legends like Frank Williams, Valtteri Bottas, and even Jay Rutland (Bernie Ecclestone’s Son-in-law).
I am so much of an F1 fan I have also been a VIP guest for Mercedes Benz at Silverstone and sat with Will I Am to watch the race in 2019 along with the other black-eyed peas.
During the time I was working in Abu Dhabi, I was approached by a company that had the basis of a design for a new piece of gym equipment for which they needed a more complete and refined design.
Because they also needed marketing and business advice, I took a percentage of the company in exchange instead of paying for these services. I still own a good share of this business today, and it is one of my many sources of income.
As I was building my product design business, we won a recognition award from Theo Paphitis of Dragons Den fame in the UK for the work we had been doing on a design project for a well-known brand. I got to meet Theo and chat with him about business which was a really great experience.
My time in Abu Dhabi was an amazing part of my life. I really enjoyed it, but when it came the time to sell my company in Abu Dhabi; this is where things went south. All ready to proceed with everything in 2015, the oil price crashed through the floor; all company acquisitions were put on hold.
I had taken my eye off the ball with the product design business, not giving it enough attention, and the employees had messed up a $1M project while I was trying to bring this deal in from the Middle East, and now my lucrative deal of me moving to Abu Dhabi and selling my business had fallen through with the oil price crash.
I decided that I would go back to consulting/freelancing as a mechanical engineer on my own without any staff and pick and choose my projects and charge a higher fee, so I did this for a couple of years to try and reset.
My next business venture came about in 2017; I have always been a lover and collector of luxury watches, Rolex, Audemars Piguet, etc., and decided to start a brand that manufactures luxury rubber watch straps for Rolex watches, along with other watch accessories.
So I put my all into this and developed not only a business but a recognized brand in the industry, and I continue to develop this business as I write today, and I am currently in talks with a business in London about the acquisition of part of this brand, so I will keep you updated on how this progresses.
In 2019 I started a social media marketing business from scratch. I said I was a fast learner, and I took this brand-new business from an idea in my head to $12,000 a month in revenue within 6 months. I won an award for being the fastest-growing social media marketing business in terms of revenue at an event in London.
I really love the challenge of taking something from absolutely nothing to generating revenue quickly, I believe this is one of my strengths in business and in life, I can think of an idea and turn it into reality pretty quickly and start generating revenue.
As the social media marketing company got too big to continue on my own, I was using freelancers from all over the world to do the work. I didn’t want to get into having my own in-house staff and have to get into having offices again, etc. I eventually sold this business to another social media marketing agency and moved on to what would become my most lucrative venture to date.
My next business adventure was in 2020 when I was approached by a company to design a waste-to-energy system for them, which I did. The business paid for my services to design this new revolutionary waste-to-energy system for them.
Because of my business, marketing, and design experience, they offered me a good portion of shares in the company to remain involved in expanding this business, which I did.
The business today has a valuation of several million and is looking to be listed on the stock market in the next seven years with a valuation far north of that, which I am really proud of.
So this leads me to 2022; I have had the desire to start a blog for a long time. Due to business commitments, I have always struggled to find the time; now, I have streamlined the businesses I am involved with and taken a step back. I finally have time to help others learn from my experiences by launching this blog.
While I haven’t put anything out there in terms of what I will be offering people who want to work with me, I am still working on the detail of how I can offer support in life and business, be it a course or one on one mentorship, or group mentorship.
I am considering offering these services to help people with the motivation and technical business skills needed to get to where they want to be with their life and business; I just need to work on how I will deliver that in the long term.
It’s not easy, and perhaps I need to articulate the struggles I have had in business and life in more detail here, but I will continue to expand on this page about my story as I progress through the blog, for now, know I am here if you need me.
I have a lot of experience in many areas of business and many different industries, I have helped businesses from day 1 which have gone on to sell for millions, and have helped businesses increase their revenue through marketing and business strategy, as well as designing ground-breaking products to base their business on.
All in all, having someone by your side who has done it all in business can help you achieve your goals quicker and help you to avoid mistakes, and help you to get the skills and motivation you need to take your business and life to the next level.
If you are interested in learning about finance and business, I hope you will feel at home here on this blog.
Email me if you would be interested in discussing working with me to help you start in business or take your current business to the next level.
If you made it this far, I want to thank you for your support and interest in me and my life and what I have to offer.
I hope what I write, and share can help you on the path you choose in business and in life.
I hope the future is bright for all of you, and I look forward to being on this journey with you.