My story of working as a PR for Estonian army to founding an autonomous, AI-powered robot bartender
My school time was not very promising. I went to an elite school and did not excel but were quite an average student. And that not because of being stupid but being a bad boy that was interested in everything else than studying. The university time was a bit different. As my grandparents have praised lawyers: grandma a judge and grandpa a law professor, my first choice was Law. Thank god that I was dismissed by 0,7 points – I would have made a terrible lawyer. As my parents were doctors, my second choice was to be a doctor. But my parents shunned me to go this path as at the end of nineties doctors hardly made any money considering the 10 years studying and stressful work. And thank god, as I would have made a terrible doctor. So, then I followed a natural path and went to study PR. That was definitely my thing, Media fascinates me until today and communication is still my strength by far. BA I went through without even showing up to lectures, it was so easy and natural flyby that I only went to take the exams. Not with the highest grades of course but set apart the grandiose final thesis that included interviews with editors of main media channels versus several ministers and our president-to-be that took me a month to write, it was an easy ride. Then I worked for 5 years in numerous positions and led a crazy life until the Master’s degree. This came upon me in Tilburg, Holland and was a whole different story. There I went to turn a new page in life and cut my hypersocial life to a full stop. I studied, trained and slept. Did not even have a girlfriend for a year, that was extraordinary!
My first job was something very different. I worked for an army. Estonian Defence Forces Battle School boss Colonel Tamm was a brave man to pick up a kid on his first-year university stint to study the first courses on his PR-bachelors. That made me a first PR-officer of our Republic. That was an out-of-my-world experience for me and changed my worldview and life for one and a half years. I still strongly believe in the healthy effect of the army on young men especially on this snowflaky era of today. Plus a country as small and vulnerable as Estonia should be armed and trained as Israel to feel safe and sound during the shady times as today. From there on came more jobs even closer to my original profession: ad agencies and marketing, media companies and running the nightlife and restaurant business while flirting with the other side of the trench and doing some years of freelance journalism, photo production and DJing in radio and a bit in clubs to get the extra credit.
My CV is 3 pages and a total mess, I have changed jobs often because many have been short projects of propping up a company or building a new image to other, jobs overlap and sometimes I have run 4 jobs at the same time. So I would never be hired on a regular way, as one of the HR people said, its “horrible and untrustworthy”. An advice for someone looking for a job – it is very overused, but follow your dreams. Do not do anything for pure profitability, don’t study to be someone that gets paid a lot just for the money. I have seen many lawyers dropping their career on top and turning to chefs or doctors leaving after the first year in hospital after studying for ten years. That’s a very sad waste of life and talent. Do what you dream of even if its something that makes your parents cry and your wife to beg. Fuck that, it’s your life. Also be prepared to be poor and struggling from time to a time if your profession is not very profitable. It might turn into one or You might discover a new dream to chase on the way 😉 There were some jobs I did not get too. Yes, the ones
I read a lot and fast. Good times 3-4 books a week or at least 10 a month. Books are free, fast and concentrated education and perfect for people who are lazy to go through lengthy courses or boring study-books. Books have grown me to who I am and given me an ability to write, express myself and tell a story. The gift of writing or storytelling has come from heavy reading. If I had to suggest books the list would be very long. One of the favorites that I always suggest to get You through hard times is Shantaram, the funniest I read is Bourdain’s Chef’s Diary, The most useful last read Factfulness, the best lifehack – Tools of the Titans, best history book Montefiore’s – Romanovs. My business is changing superfast or evolving I would say. Three years ago I knew nothing about robotics and not much about tech. I am very much on the humanitarian side of science. But when I started dreaming of the robotic bartender business where I am at the interest and hunger for info exploded and I read today everything I can get my hands on. Mostly news and easy reading stuff but occasionally more and more scientific material. Conferences (AI Summit in Amsterdam 2 weeks ago for instance) and other people supply with a lot of info too, although there is so much, more than I can even think of handling. Luckily there are people available to hire who are much smarter than I am. Thank god for that.