After consulting is before a career: What do creative professionals do after consulting with us? In part 4 of our "Nachgefragt" series, we talk to Oliver Fritzsche, a freelance online marketing consultant who consulted with us last year.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin: Hello Oliver. First of all, please introduce yourself briefly.
Oliver Fritzsche: My name is Oliver Fritzsche, I am 31 years old and work as a freelance online marketing consultant. My job is to implement websites for clients and, among other things, also manage their Instagram and Facebook pages. I do this mainly for restaurants and other catering businesses. I also run "VeganBerlin" on the side, which is an online guide for vegan and vegetarian restaurants and cafés in Berlin.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:What did you do before?
Oliver Fritzsche:Before that, I worked as a product manager in various startups, developed web-based projects in an agency and optimized websites.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:How did you start?
Oliver Fritzsche:For a long time after graduating from high school, I didn't know what I really wanted to do - especially for the rest of my life. That's why I initially tried out a lot of things - both here in Germany and abroad. Then, when I got a job at an online company in England, I felt for the first time that this work could be what I wanted to do in the longer term.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:What did you like about working at the online company?
Oliver Fritzsche:The freedom and possibilities of the Internet in terms of work location, work orientation and future prospects simply grabbed me. But first I did my bachelor's degree in International Business Management in the Netherlands, and then I moved to Berlin. Here, I first worked for a few startups and in a digital agency. During this time, I learned a lot very quickly. However, I realized that a stubborn 40- to 50-hour week in the office was not what I had in mind. I longed for my own projects, for more self-determination and spatial and temporal flexibility. That's why I quit my job. I wanted to take my time to realize my own projects and to decide what to do next.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:You were in our consultation in June 2017. At what point were you at that time?
Oliver Fritzsche:I was in the middle of the discovery process and wanted to get an overview of potential career paths so that I could decide how to proceed. At that time, I already had my own platform "VeganBerlin" on the web and had also made initial contacts with restaurants that needed a website or social media support. That's how the first freelance jobs came about. However, at that time I was not yet thinking about full-time self-employment. It wasn't until I came to you for advice through a friend (thanks Laura!) that I realized how suitable this step could be for me.
First and foremost, you listened carefully and recognized that my life path so far has been less than linear, and that a long-term, full-time position with a company is probably not right for me
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:Were we able to help you then?
Oliver Fritzsche:Yes, you have helped me a lot, and I am very grateful for that. First of all, you listened carefully and recognized that my life path so far has not been very linear and that a long-term, full-time position with a company is probably not right for me. And you didn't advise me in any direction, but showed me my options. That was very important to me. What helped me most in the end was the reference to the start-up grant from the employment agency. If this option hadn't existed (and I hadn't found out about it through you), I probably would never have found my way into self-employment. I can only recommend the advice to everyone. A former colleague was also with you and was totally enthusiastic.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:What's on your business card today?
Oliver Fritzsche:My business cards are currently still in progress - one for my self-employment as a consultant, one for "VeganBerlin". My designation as a self-employed person is currently "Online Product and Marketing Manager". In this area, I currently have four permanent clients for whom I do online marketing and social media support, including one client from Braunschweig who is still quite new. In the coming months, I might add one or two more. My clientele comes mainly from the gastronomy sector. Mainly they are operators of cafés and restaurants in Berlin. Alongside that, my own project "VeganBerlin" is also growing constantly at a high level. I do that on the side. It's a great balance to the contract work. Maybe there will soon be one for Hamburg, too.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:On a scale from 1 to "Woohoo": How successful would you describe your work at the moment?
Oliver Fritzsche:I think that I am on the right track. I feel very comfortable in the current situation. My customers are satisfied, I continue to learn and can manage my own time. In addition, I've hardly had to approach the companies yet, they came to me - it all felt like it "just happened". It feels a bit like that with self-employment, too - and that's a success for me.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:Oliver, where else are you going?
Oliver Fritzsche:My start-up grant will expire in a few months. Until then, or shortly thereafter, I want to be completely on my own financial footing. So far, things are looking very good. If things continue as they are, I can well imagine continuing to work as an independent consultant for the next few years. But I'm also looking forward to change and new challenges - be it in the area of new technologies, social media portals or unknown customer groups.
Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin:Dear Pre-Consultation Me ...
Oliver Fritzsche:From personal experience, I can only advise everyone to take some risks. It is usually worth it. I had great respect for self-employment - and even if it requires a lot of discipline and self-initiative - the positive effects outweigh the risks. In addition, it is always worthwhile to exchange ideas with friends, acquaintances or even strangers. That's the only way I found out about creative business consulting.
More information about Oliver and his business: www.veganberlin.com
The interview was conducted by Peter Kessel | Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin