Three years ago Erlend Bakke thought he was about to die when he collapsed on a London tube train due to stress from overwork. Today, thanks to the internet, the young entrepreneur is living a dream lifestyle – financially free, but only having to work five hours a week.
Norwegian born entrepreneur Erlend Bakke has leverage the internet to create the financial freedom and time freedom that allows him to live anywhere in the world. While he is mainly London based, he also spends time in Oslo, San Francisco and Davao City in the Philippines where one of his (three) companies is based.
This week, however, he is in New York setting up a studio for his photography business. Not that he will be directly involved in the studio once it’s up and running. That’s because Erlend has mastered what is being called ethical outsourcing – and it’s ethical outsourcing that makes Erlend’s amazing lifestyle possible.
When we think of outsourcing we normally think of jobs being exported overseas and factories closing down at home. For many people, outsourcing has a negative reputation: job losses here and exploitation of workers abroad for pittance wages. Ethical outsourcing, however, could hardly be further from this stereotype.
Ethical outsourcing takes advantage of the ability the internet has given us to work with people on projects wherever they are on the globe. Email, online phone calls through Skype, social media, online video and file sharing sites are just a few of the tools that make this possible.
Ethical outsourcing allows work to be done by the people that have the right skills – regardless of where they live – in exchange for a wage that is generous by local standards, while still offering great value for the person providing the work. It promotes skill development and allows much needed capital to flow to some of the countries that need it most, while keeping the cost of key services down here at home – a true “win win” situation. And as we can see from the New York studio, ethical outsourcing doesn’t always mean India or the Philippines. It’s about matching the right people with the right skills at a fair price wherever they live. In other words, it’s about building a great team and letting them get on with the job.
This outsourced team building is what Erlend excels at. And that brings us to the second reason he is in New York. His book “Never Work Again” was released in September and Erlend is taking advantage of his trip stateside to promote it. Subtitled “Work Less, Earn More and Live Your Freedom” it teaches us ordinary mortals how we can live a lifestyle like Erlend’s – one that gives us the financial freedom and the time freedom to truly enjoy life.
Already Never Work Again is an international bestseller, having hit the bestseller lists in the US, Canada and the UK. It has clearly touched a nerve with readers eager to escape the treadmill of the rat race. Erlend is quick to point out that the book is not just about making money. “You think it’s about the money, but it’s not,” explains Erlend. “Yes, the money is important, but ultimately it’s about following your passions and living the life of your dreams.” The question you will answer as you read through the book is “what does freedom mean to me?”
Never Work Again will appeal to the growing number of people either running or thinking about setting up a home based business. One of the advantages of a virtual business like Erlend’s is that it can be run from anywhere in the world with an internet connection – whether that’s from home, from the beach or while travelling in New York.
Living a life of meaning is very important to Erlend and his philosophy comes through clearly in the first half of the book. The second half, however, has a very practical business focus. Erlend takes the reader through the steps needed to set up, automate and outsource a virtual business – steps that anyone can follow if they put their mind to it. He also provides a series of business blueprints. Tried and tested virtual business models that readers can follow to make financial and time freedom a reality in their own lives.
Never Work Again is available from all good bookshops including Amazon where it is available both in hardcopy and on Kindle. Click here to visit Never Work Again’s Amazon page.