Thursday, February 4, 2010

mixing hobbies & work

N asked me how come I didn't work with a kiteboarding company - since I like kiteboarding so much and work with many companies. I told him that that could potentially be a lot of fun, but that mixing hobbies and professions had risks. Last year I met Neil Pryde, the founder of the largest providers of sails for the windsurfing industry. His company also built sails for sailboats and kiteboarding gear. I mentioned to Neil how lucky I thought he was to be able to build a company around his passion for sailing. He said, "not at all... the company almost ruined my passion". Turns out that what used to be pure fun, i.e., sailing, became work. So, they actually stopped making sails for yachts and focused on windsurfing and kiteboarding. And now Neil is happy that sailing remains purely about fun for him. Of course, if you can make it work, the combination must be terrific. But sometimes it might be better to keep hobbies and work separate.

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