Even though it’s a cliche I hear frequently from almost all of the mentors I’ve recruited over the last decade, I too  want to give back.

 

“… I would suggest trying EVERYTHING and testing what works for you. This is what works best for me.”

 

Time Out.

Can we talk?

About what’s going on?

And a little later about where you’re (I’m) going with this work-in-progress.

And, maybe still later about what’s happened on your (my) journey so far?

Katherine Milkovich left sage advice in a comment about self-publishing:

There are always some new strategies, some of them are good while the others are not really worth my time because I saw no results. 

I believe what Katherine did was to simply define what I mean by “conducting a knowledge laboratory”.

We don’t always know what to believe and what not to believe when we cross into new territories (real and imagined) – territories filled with fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD).

“… I would suggest trying EVERYTHING and testing what works for you. This is what works best for me.”

Periodically I revisit my approach for creating new (for me) knowledge that I can apply more efficiently and productively.

I strongly feel you have to stay relevant and more marketable than your competition.

My approach unfolds in three phases.

What’s going on?

The Knowledge Path Series
  1. What is your situation?
  2. What are the knowns?
  3. What are the unknowns?
  4. What are the threats?
  5. Why?

Where are you going?

  1. What if?
  2. What will you be able to do?
  3. What are your expectations?
  4. How will you feel?
  5. What will you know or understand?

What happened on your journey so far?

  1. What did you discover?
  2. What surprised you?
  3. What insights have you learned?
  4. What are new opportunities you are better positioned for?

So how does it work? Here’s what I’m experiencing in this journey so far.  Call it part one.

What’s going on?

What is your situation? I’ve been in the advising, consulting and expertise peddling business for more years than I’d like to reveal.  Here’s what I realized.  And what I wanted to do.

Make a Million Dollars
  • You either work for someone else or for yourself. 
  • What every consultant I know wants is to make money while they sleep.
  • They already sell an expertise. 
  • They need  a website to attract new clients. 
  • If so, why not combine their online marketing with a way to earn income from it – 24 hours a day, 365 days a year?

What are the knowns? In my day job at the business school I developed a curriculum, but realized most executive students weren’t attempting to build a lifestyle business.

I’m guessing you aren’t an executive.

You might play one on TV.

But I do know plenty of ex-executives who have been put out to pasture in their late 40s and mid-50s and now face these choices.

If Only. What if?

How to choose the ‘Preneur’ business model by weighing the pros and cons:

What steps should you (I) take?

I’ve already identified 12 steps (from the master list of 34) described and illustrated in Volume One  of “The Knowledge Path: How to Live. Love. Work. Play. Invest and Leave a Legacy.

Phew.

Start down a path with a  lifestyle business that you can take anywhere in the world “at the intersection of passion and quality-of-life“:

  1. Choose a business model that brings out the best in you.
  2. Conduct a preliminary marketing study about the  best places on your bucket list
  3. Activate a “Brand-as-an-Expert” campaign
  4. Maintain a consistent process of content aggregation, curation, composition, and circulation.
  5. Engage and nurture your audience of followers.  Grow to 1000 (2000?) raving fans
  6. Make it easy for them to buy your expertise and advocate on your behalf to others.
  7.  Automate the chain of awareness, interest, liking, desire, trial, repurchase and regular use.
  8. Practice daily to master your story telling process to engage your customers imagination.
  9. Cultivate a voice that is uniquely yours and delivers on your “Brand-as-an-Expert.”
  10. Sketch scenarios in five-year time frames to highlight potential risks and rewards, threats and opportunities.
  11. Prepare to pivot and thrive when key moments during your five-year scenarios arrive.
  12. Monitor and anticipate shifts in your environment.  Swim with the new currents and clue your fans in to what’s changing.

What are the unknowns?

Building a website that will describe my work-in-process.

  • Figuring out a way of capturing the knowledge and experience in a way that results in another knowledge product.
  • I didn’t know how to write and publish a book. 
  • I knew I had a story to tell.
  • Figuring out what the step-by-step process is for self-publishing, hosting a website and blog, submitting a book to Amazon, determining all the moving parts to a social media strategy and crowdfunding campaign.
  • If the return on my effort ROE may not be worth the time to master it from scratch. (Or, for you). 
  • Costs: Incurred expenses for registering domain names over two years with additional for confidentiality, hosting my 6 sites  

What are the threats?

For example:

  • My learn-as-you-go DIY project takes too long.

    Rearranging Creative Ideas
  • Is it analysis paralysis?  The research and writing parts vary between the extremes of terror and bliss.
  • My book content ages by the time it takes to successfully self-publish the series. The perceived value tanks and no-one buys my books.
  • I lose focus and move on to Volume Two prematurely. I self-sabotage as I near the end – what’s that old song – Slip Sliding Away?
  • The content business isn’t sustainable and you can’t really make a living following this business model.

Why?

Even though it’s a cliché I hear frequently from almost all of the mentors I’ve recruited over the last decade, I too  want to give back.

And, I wanted to learn something new by testing the process for creating new knowledge and innovation – called knowledge banking.

  • How you can choose the right resort community just for you in the Western Region of the United States – all you needed was fast wifi connection and a method.
  • Write Volume Two as a new series of books – selecting the type of organizations with talent cultures as clients or employers – that bring out the best in you. Optimize the entire process by applying what I’ve learned so far.
  • Integrate a project plan. Test what works and what doesn’t.   Grow your reading audience by igniting a marketing plan and social media campaign.
  • Pick the best crowdfunding platform.
  • Publish on Amazon – give it a way individually and as a five book series to experiment with pricing (Volume One) – creating a bucket list of best places attracting people like you in quality-of-life communities.
  • Offer exclusive reports and bucket list updates.

Conduct a laboratory. Bank new knowledge and expertise mastered. Package and repackage your deposits into new products.

What works for you?

Part Two: Where Are You Going?