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When I left my prior startup, I spent several months actively avoiding anything that even loosely resembled work. I wanted real space before I re-entered my professional life. I traveled. I read. I spent time with friends long neglected. Most importantly, I spent time considering how I wanted to live going forward. What type of relationships did I want? What type of health did I wish to pursue? And what type of career did I next wish to experience?
I debated all sorts of criteria. The type of role. The geography. The domain. The vertical. The economics. But they all quickly fell down the list as I realized there was a simpler guidepost bouncing around in my head.
I just wanted to enjoy the work.
So I began to isolate what about my recent career I enjoyed the most. The answers came to me quickly.
I loved the pace and clarity of startup culture (aka move fast or perish).
I loved the one-on-one moments helping someone solve a puzzle or unlock an opportunity.
I loved the camaraderie of doing something hard as a group.
I loved working with folks who could take the vision (but not themselves) seriously.
I then asked myself a second question: What else besides those elements feels most important to me now? One answer came to mind — I want to be able to control when I work, from where I work, and with whom I work.
I then sat back and crafted a simple hypothesis:
If I could work with startups, where most of the interaction was one-on-one, where I had full control over where I worked, when I worked, and with whom I worked, then I would enjoy the work.
Enjoy The Work → ETW Advisors
What’s remarkable is that after nearly five years, the building of a company, and dozens of startups later, much of our community does not even know what ETW means.
To rectify that, we’ve decided to decode ourselves and re-brand as Enjoy The Work. You’ll see the new logo on our website, social media, and our newsletter.
In this culture, we seek a great deal of satisfaction and happiness from our work. But sometimes, it’s easy to get lost in the maze of tasks and obligations and lose connection to the higher ideal. The name of our company was borne out of a selfish desire not to let myself get lost again. But what I now hope is that it can serve as a beacon for all with whom we’re fortunate enough to work.