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Flinkable – Never Stop Learning

By Mat Amp

It’s a wet Wednesday afternoon in Walthamstow. The rain drums relentlessly against the window pain of your 60’s office block and your boss’s admonishing tone tests what’s left of your resolve.

You glance at the clock once again, sure that it has all but stopped. In your inbox is an an e-mail from that charming, animated Swedish bloke you met at a trade fair last week, promoting a new website where you can find courses doing just about anything. To pass the time before you can finally get to leave the office and fight your way back to Mile End you click on the link in his e-mail simply named Flinkable.

Two years later you open a coffee shop and jewellery store with a locksmith called Fred and you wonder what your life would have been like if you had never clicked on that link.

Flinkable is a beautifully simple website ‘led by the life affirming power of short-courses’, created by Swedish photographer come brewer, Andreas Pettersson. Its aim is to fulfill the increasing demand from people who want to learn new skills, whether it be to ‘reignite an old passion or to find the inspiration to change your career.’

As well as those who want to learn, the site is also aimed at people Andreas refers to as ‘educators’ – which includes hobbyists that want to share their skills as well as more professional teachers who run courses full time for a living.

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Like so many business ideas Flinkable is the result of Andreas’ personal experience. He said: “I was looking for short courses and finding it hard to find information… jumping from three different websites trying to cross reference or look for a particular things among hundreds of different courses and websites so you have to go between them to find what is relevant for you.  So I realised it all had to be collected in one place to make it easier to find great courses [and hopefully] easier to host good courses as well.”

Andreas sees Flinkable as part of what he refers to as the makers revolution or makers movement that has seen people move away from mass manufacturing and materialism in a desire to be more connected to what is produced and ultimately each other. Andreas says this is really at the heart of what Flinkable is built on, adding: “People are going back to small scale producing… love to learn new things [and using] their hands to do something physical, something tangible. Ten years ago people used to boast about their new car, their flat screen TV. People don’t do that anymore because they would rather boast about having a life… It’s not what you have, it is who you are, who you are connected to.”

Andreas’ association with Bootstrap goes back several years. Although he’s a photographer by trade he is also responsible for the shipping container brewery, 40ft, in the Bootyard. He said “Bootstrap is a fantastic enterprise and through them I’ve done different things, their enterprise start up, photography classes and the brewery is something I’ve been working closely on with them since June.”

Two years ago I did a simple brewing course but it sparked the interest for me to carry on learning and learning and then i’m suddenly in the position where I can start up a new enterprise and that’s all from that brewing course.” He adds, summing up the motivation behind Flinkable.

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At the moment the site is in Beta testing phase with 30 or so courses advertised but Andreas is confident that many more will follow and asks Bootstrap tenants to check out the site: “Tenants should have a look on the site.. If you are a good educator. If you know someone who is doing a course or wants to take a course. We’re going to start doing some meet ups as an interactive forum to talk about ways of learning.”

It is free to register on the site and free to advertise courses, with the site taking a percentage when bookings are made. Andreas hopes to take Flinkable global within the next five years and with ever growing thirst for knowledge and skills there is no reason why he shouldn’t succeed.  

To find out more about Flinkable visit their website.

This blog was created for Bootstrap, by volunteers at Poached Creative.

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