I've written before about the ups and downs of self employment, the concerns about keeping a regular flow of work, the sense of dread when everything seems to be slowing down, then the elation when everything starts to pick up again - as it always does.
I never tire of the feeling of satisfaction in doing a job well and not only being paid for it, but also being praised and valued for my work. For far too long I was a corporate drone, taking home my monthly salary but getting little appreciation for the work I did. It always appeared to me that there was a fear of praise, because that might possibly encourage the employee to ask for more money or increased status. Now, I do a good job and people genuinely appreciate what I do.
Every now and again I'm surprised by my customer's appreciation, and last week was one of those occasions. One of them called to invite me to look at a couple of jobs, and in conversation asked me if I would like their old printer, as they were getting a replacement. I recalled having seen it when I had re-fitted their home office last year and knew that it was an all in one A3 printer, copier, scanner and for what it's worth, fax.
I said that I was interested and when, a week later I arrived at their home, I was presented with a Brother MFC-J6910DW in immaculate condition.
When I got it home and linked it to my WiFi network I was even more surprised to find just how easy it was to set up and the depth of functionality it had. There was no installation process to go through, the drivers were already in place. It uses Apple's AirPrint which is great for wireless printing from mobile devices on the network. I use Printopia to achieve this with my large format Epson Photo and GCC laser printers.
The implementation of AirPrint means that the printer is not much more than 6 months old, and when I delved into the settings and specs of the machine, I discovered that it has only printed just over 130 pages from new. The ink cartridges are still about 75% full.
It's going to be a hugely beneficial addition to my home office, even if I don't use the fax.
I've since discovered that there is an iOS app from Brother which adds further functionality to printing and scanning when using my iPhone and iPad, although the app design is poorly implemented.
My customer refused to accept anything for the printer, but I have since made an appropriate gesture of my appreciation.