James and Timbo are back, with the second installment of their 3-part series about reducing your work hours and multiplying your wealth. In this episode, uncover the whys and hows of leveraging a team to unlock business growth and profit.
In this episode:
01:27 – If the Internet broke
03:25 – Black magic?
06:01 – Shramkomatize!
07:20 – From stage presentation to 3-part course
10:52 – Part 2: Team
11:39 – The 3 main steps
15:34 – Conducting the orchestra
19:12 – The game changer
23:41 – Work out this one big thing
26:07 – You need SOPs
30:43 – James’s essential communication tool
33:53 – Small batch sizes
Internet Marketing Products & Resources
Here you’ll find Tim and James have some things to help your business become more powerful.
Tim: Jimmy James?
James: Timbo, I’m calling you on your mobile.
Tim: You are?
James: How about we do an episode?
Tim: (Laughs) It’s very clever how technology is such an enabler.
James: Yeah, I’m using Skype, where I can just dial a phone number. It’s what I use when I’m overseas.
Tim: My kids accuse me of being stuck in the 80s, but I reckon you’re a man of today.
James: I’m a modern marketer. I have Skype, and I’m prepared to use it.
Is the internet here to stay?
Tim: And if any of this does go to where, I’ve got a little insight, which I think this Internet thing will take off, and we’re proving it.
James: You reckon the Internet’s going to be more than just a fad?
Tim: I think it’s here to stay. Come on, what kind of question is that?
James: Well, I have a vested interest in it. I couldn’t do what I do now as easily, but my great grandfather was doing a similar business model to me, just doing it a little bit more manually.
Tim: Yeah, right. Well, you do have a very vested interest in it. I have a vested interest in this thing called the Internet, and you know, if we look at it that way, we’ve got all our eggs in one basket. Anxious?
James: No, because if the Internet broke tomorrow, if we go all Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, then I think I could go and do something else, like teach market farmers how to sell more vegetables, or get into the gold bullion trading business or something.
Tim: I’d love to see you go out on the land and teach the farmers. Because I reckon that a flannelette shirt would become you. Flannelette shirt, moleskins, R.M. Williams, and a little bit of hay just sticking out the side of your mouth, Jimmy.
James: That’s a time warp. I used to have flannelette shirts, I used to have a utility, and I do have R.M. Williams that were well-worn, like in those advertisements. They were literally down to stitching.
Tim: When I first met you, you were on the land. You were on some land.
James: I was, on acreage, that’s right.
Tim: You were on acreage, you had snakes in the horse barn and you had a rifle range across the road, from memory.
James: Yeah, it was all happening. I prefer the surf, just quietly.
Tim: Just quietly, yeah. Yeah, well it’s not really that hard a decision, is it?
James: No. Hey, you know, since we spoke last, a lot has happened, and it’s probably time to do part two of our three-part series, with a little sidenote.
Listen to part 1 of this episode
Tim: Yeah, a lot has happened. And listeners, you can go back and listen to the previous episode, which I think was Episode 78, in which we started to talk about one of three ways in which you could – I say this with a smile on my face, because sometimes I wonder, is it possible – you can double your income and halve the amount of hours that you work, which sounds a little black magic-ish to me, Jimmy. What’s all this about?
James: Well, I put together this presentation to speak at Chris Ducker’s event in the Philippines, and I wanted to get a maximum impact for people, and I reflected on my own situation. And even since we’ve started recording Freedom Ocean, I do work less now than ever before, still make, the last financial year was a phenomenal year profit-wise, and I do think it’s possible. And a lot of my students are getting success.
So I thought, what would be the main things I could teach, because I only had about an hour, and I wanted to cut through. And I know that I was speaking to an audience of predominantly bloggers, who are good at writing and some of them have products and information, a lot of them sell onesies, like one-time products, and even worse, lifetime subscriptions, horrid mistake.
Tim: I thought you said they sold what? You said onesies?
James: Yeah, one-time products, you know, ebooks or a one-time membership that they only get paid once, and then they’re back looking for that next customer, selling their hard sell. I thought, I can help these people, so I’m going to just break it down. And Part 1, which was, as you said, Episode 78 of Freedom Ocean, we talked about the You part, how you can get yourself back in shape. Because if you’re not in shape, then your business is going nowhere. So we did cover off on that.
What’s more on this topic
Part 2 is all about Team, and Part 3 which will be in the next episode is about your business and business model. So that’s a very exciting thing. But I took this presentation, and I was kind of like, I read on someone’s blog, so I’m just quoting someone else, I was like the unofficial favorite speaker because this cut through was so deep that since that event, I’m not joking, half the audience joined SuperFastBusiness and are learning the things that I talked about in more depth.
Tim: How many are in the audience? Three?
James: 50 people.
James: Yeah. And I even had some of the speakers say they want to Schramkotize their business.
Tim: Oh, there you go. Ladies and gentleman, welcome back to FreedomOcean and I’m joined by the verb, James Schramko.
James: (laughs) They had this like infographic on Facebook, like I got Schramkoed, or something like that.
Tim: What’s it feel like to be a verb?
James: It’s not bad when it’s said in a positive thing. It means that a presenter and you do this all the time, so you’re pretty much like a world leading expert on this topic. My goal is to move someone from where they’re at before I start to somewhere that is better for them by the end of my presentation, and I felt I got the job done.
Tim: We’re not here to talk about that but listeners, massive lesson, what James said about 3 minutes ago. What could he do to help his audience? And if you take that mindset, when you are speaking to that one person or a thousand people, it will make your life so much easier, you present good content, your nerves will disappear, and if you’re in that mindset of helping them, then you are a winner. Back to you Jimmy.
How this topic came about
James: Yeah. So I wanted to move people. I was able to study the audience because I was interacting with them for a couple of days. Chris Ducker put on a great event so the people there were highly qualified, ready to learn. It was a great format with only three speakers a day. Top marks for Chris for such a good event.
So I presented this thing. Since then, I actually recorded it as an info product, gave it to my members, and it had a deep resonating impact. And this really sort of meant that I’m now focused so much on the subscription model as my core thing that I teach, and that’s part three.
Let’s dig into part two though, which is about team.
Tim: And I am going to just pause, not a long answer but you recorded it, subsequently you came back, what have you done? Did you use ScreenFlow with your slide deck and just talked to your slides?
James: Before I came back. I was still in the Philippines…
Tim: Oh, going back to his room after the concert?
James: No, no. I went from Cebu back up to Manila. I have a meeting with the managers at the InterContinental, and I was also out in the suburbs. When I was out in the suburbs, it was very hot. It was like 36 degrees Celsius. My computer was melting. I recorded the whole thing for an hour and when ScreenFlow was rendering, the computer collapsed and it died. I lost the whole thing.
Tim: No. How does Jimmy James handle that stuff? Because you’re pretty cool headed. We call him the ice man.
James: It’s happened a few times Timbo. I just do this: I think this is my opportunity to enhance it and to refine upon what I just did. I’m going to take this opportunity to make it better. So what I did, I cooled my computer down, I put it next to the air conditioner, let it get cool, and then I fired it up again in the air conditioned room. There were kids playing outside, dogs barking, I mention that in the recording to give it context.
Tim: Chickens? Any roosters?
James: Chickens, roosters. And next door to where I was staying was like a 7/11, someone’s converted their unit into a shop. They call them sari-sari stores. Like you would never be allowed to do that in Australia. Like there was this bell ringing, and kids hanging out there buying lollies and stuff.
Anyway, I did it in three parts this time. I thought, OK I’ll be able to get at least a third of it out before my computer shuts down. So I recorded a third and rendered it, and that locked in the recording, and I was able to do the small batch, which is one of the things I teach. And then, I did part two and then I did part three. And now, I’ve separated into three parts just like we’re doing on this podcast series where initially, I presented it in one hit. And it helps people consume it in three parts.
Tim: So the proof Jimmy that this internet thing is here to stay.
James: Yeah, but it’s about giving people bite size pieces like we’ll literally have three episodes of this. So this core presentation has been delivered as a live presentation. It’s turned into three episodes of FreedomOcean. This is part two. It’s turned into premium content for my members, and I’m now able to give it away as my pre-opt in bribe on SuperFastBusiness.com. And send out three separate emails, all of them encouraging people to learn more from me inside my community.
So it’s highly leveraged but it’s a great example of taking one effort and turning it into multiple lifetimes.
Tim: Love it. So let’s go therefore to step two, which is all about?
James: It’s about team.
Step 2 – Leverage your team
James: Because you get a couple hundred hours a month of your personal capacity. Without a team or contracted service supplies, you just physically can’t get to the stuff that you might need to get to, especially if you want to operate a service business like I do. If you want to do a publishing business like both you and I do, we’re going to need someone else to get involved with some of the parts. So someone will transcribe this episode on our podcast, they will edit it, they’ll put in that cool Hawaiian sound intro and outro, they’ll load it up to Amazon wherever we host it, they will put it into WordPress on our website. We won’t touch it because the team will do it.
3 main steps
So there’s only three main steps here. Firstly, you’ve got to work out, of all the stuff you’ve got to do, all the tasks you do, and one exercise is to write out that Post-it note, remember? And put every single task you do on a Post-it note, and see which post it notes can you just curl up and put into the bin. Delete. Step one.
Step two is can you transfer the Post-it note from you to someone else? If it’s not the best use of your time, if it’s something low value or something you’re not good at, put it from you to someone else. It could be that you hire a service, it could be that you hire a person to do it. It could be having a lawn mower. It could be having someone cook for you like you go to a restaurant instead of you cooking.
And the third should be that you’ll only be left with the Post-it note tasks that you should do and they have to add up to less than a hundred hours a month because you’ve got to allow for things to happen that you didn’t plan for as well.
James: Makes sense.
Tim: I’m loving the Post-it note thing.
James: Pretty simple. And 3M will love it too because you’re going to become a consumer.
James: Do you like the branded ones or the knock offs?
Tim: It’s a great question. And I’m glad you asked it because it’s something quite close to my heart. Every now and then I go the tight-a** option and get the knock offs, but the adhesives…
James: They don’t stick.
Tim: Well, they either don’t…
James: Or they’re too sticky.
Tim: Or they stick too much.
Tim: And then you peel them off and it just… It’s something about the amount of adhesive in the 3M ones that gives you just a really nice sensation when peeled.
James: It reminds of that John Ruskin quote, “It’s unwise to pay too little” because you might as well provide a little bit margin for something to go wrong. And if you’re going to provide a little bit extra of a something to go wrong, which it invariably does, you might as well have bought the right thing in the first place.
Tim: Well, exactly. And there’s some other great examples Jimmy, while we’re on the topic and while we’re digressing. Glad wrap versus cling wrap. I don’t know whether you’re a big user, but the original Glad wrap are much better sticky and stretch about it, it’s just good to use. Have you got another one?
Other product where you go, “You know what, I am just going to pay,” like a 7/11 slurpee.
James: Yeah. My AMG.
Tim: Well, yeah. Versus what? Get the AMG instead of what? The Ford?
James: I don’t know, yeah, like the Commodore or something. They’re nice but they’re not the same. It’s not even close. No comparison.
Tim: No. I think you should retract. That is a ridiculous example.
James: What are you talking about? I spent decades in this industry. I know what I’m talking about.
James: They really are manufactured very well, and they feel good, and they drive well, and they’re just awesome.
Tim: Well, you’re right, you’re right. Not everyone can afford an AMG. Everyone can afford Glad wrap versus cling wrap. The 7/11 slurpee.
James: All of our listeners are able to afford it because they’ll be implementing this stuff.
Tim: Exactly right.
James: All right, let’s move on.
Tim: All right. We’ve just lost half our audience.
James: Right. So that’s such is the nature of this particular podcast. By the way, a lot of people have told me, especially people at the event, they really do like FreedomOcean. That was heartwarming to hear that. A good audience.
Tim: Is that James Schramko the third?
James: I thought of another one. Telstra versus Vodafone.
Tim: Well you know, you and I… Boy oh boy, overwhelmingly. Telstra.
James: No question. They have a complete monopoly and have fantastic network. One of my clients paid us to set up an entire class action website against Vodafone.
James: Like there’s a lot of unhappy people out there. I used to work for them by the way.
Be the conductor
Tim: Well, let’s get back to it mate. So we’re talking about team. At what point are you going to use the cliched quote, “There’s no I in team?
James: But there’s a ME in team.
Tim: There is.
James: So I don’t use that cliche.
Tim: Ah, it doesn’t work?
James: Not so much a cliche guy anyway. I’m far more contrarian for that. You want to be the conductor of the orchestra, up there, waving the stick. Hire the musicians, get them playing the beautiful stuff. You can’t run around playing every instrument. Or if you do, you’re using like some 8-track, it’s going to be labor intensive. And the cool thing is you can even train someone up to be the conductor and step back from the whole thing. You can actually sit in the audience watching it. And that’s kind of where my service business is getting to, where the managers are so good at conducting the orchestra that I’m just listening to beautiful music.
Tim: Yeah, I mean that’s a pretty sweet spot to be. I wonder how many, I don’t know the answer to this. How many of our audience just hear that and go, “Yeah, right. Good luck with that.” Is it too much a pipe dream? Being the conductor is it? Sitting in the audience and watching the conductor maybe. I don’t know.
James: That’s a real business. When you’re not doing all the jobs.
James: I’m sure the exercise we just talked about, most people are doing most of the tasks in their business at the level that people are listening at, a lot of people, I mean your whole audience is pitched at small businesses. So that kind of implies they don’t have massive teams.
Tim: Well, yeah. And that is what raises the question why. And it could be I don’t know how. If you’ve been listening to this show, we’ve talked a lot…
James: I’ll tell you why. Most people suck at managing. They suck at hiring and leading a team.
Tim: Control freaks.
James: Yeah. They want to hang on to all the jobs, only they can do it, just this one time, or they don’t know the next few things that I’m about to share with you.
Tim: Well I think the nature of a small business owner too is to say I’ve given birth to something I’m passionate about and I’d like to hear what everybody in my market and I feel very responsible for it and want to control it and amplify it.
James: Yeah, that’s one side. But if they’re really passionate and they care a lot about their business, wouldn’t they want to share it with more of the world and leverage it more than just being small time?
James: Like think about McDonald’s. You know, the McDonald’s brothers were making pretty good burgers back in the day. But Ray Kroc took it out there. They could have been, “Yeah, just make some cool burgers with a little process of production line and drive thru and stuff.” Now, you could get the fine stuff in any country. You know what I’m talking about.
The byproduct of value is wealth
But anyways, scaling it out to the market a bit with a team. Like I can’t serve as many people as we do without a team. We have 46 people in our business and they’re awesome. And we serve hundreds of people and the byproduct of creating value is actually wealth. Not just money wealth but a good feeling of supporting not just our team but all the customers that we have, they support customers because we deal wholesale with a lot of our services. So we’re actually helping hundreds of people by letting that idea grow beyond just me.
And when it started, it was just me doing two customer websites. I found the old proposal from my garage the other day. I’m clearing out again and I found my first services proposal from 2008 or something, and it’s really grown a lot from that by just hiring and training. The reality is with a team that’s gone on more than 5 years now, 5 ½ years, you don’t have to be that involved with it if they know what they’re doing.
Tim: Jimmy, what was the game changer for you in fomenting this mindset of team? Can you think back?
The game changer
James: I remember. I remember. It was like 3 in the morning. I was starting to shiver because I’d run out of energy because I had dinner at like 9:30, it had worn off. My body just started to shake 2:30 or 3 in the morning, and that was time to go to bed because it gets really cold at night, and I’m there in my hoodie and it’s just me.
By day, I’m a general manager of like a $300,000 package with 70-something people running around, doing all the work, and I’d almost made myself redundant in the business. By night…
Tim: This is when you’re at Mercedes…
James: Yeah, by night it was me, just me, struggling to make 2 or 3 grand a month from affiliate commision for my first real business model that stuck. I was probably up to about 3 to 5 grand a month. And I was just thinking, it’s so cruel. By day, I’ve got this whole team, I’ve got all the systems, everything’s in place. By night, I do every single job in the business.
And I remember, Rich Schefren put out a mindmap and it had like all the different roles in the business and it had YOU in every one of them, you, you, you, you, you, you, you. And I’m thinking that’s so true. And the first thing that I did, I actually did a logical calculation. I worked out that I was doing like three bonus claims a day or something like $150 a day, something like that. Three bonus claims a day and that was like $50 each, $150 a day, 30 days. In a month, it’s like 5 grand.
And I worked out that I could hire someone for a thousand bucks a month to fill those three things a day and then that meant that I didn’t have to log in, check the guy’s order, send them the thing manually. I knew that I still have a profit and that I could spend the same time that I was doing that on moving forward, which is getting traffic, writing articles, putting stuff up.
And then the next step was in my day job, at the Mercedes dealership, I actually bumped into Kerry Finch, and she was the temporary receptionist filling in for someone. She was like a tour operator/temp. She was very, very good. And I asked her to help me. I gave her a job description for that role because we needed a full timer. And I said, could you just check this, tell me if it’s accurate. She came back to me just like a minute or two, and said, “Here you go, I’ve made a few changes.” And it was really good.
I said, “Why are you doing this? You should be writing articles for Americans for US$10 per article from home in a track suit pants and ugg boots. And she said, “Tell me more.”
Tim: She did?
James: And I told her about the Warrior Forum, and article marketing, and SEO, and she goes, “This is so good. Why aren’t you doing it?” And I said, “Watch this space. I will be.” And then I hired Kerry to write my articles. She’s gone on to be very successful in this business. She’s got her own team of article writers and she’s now been the conductor of the orchestra and she’s past the 6-figure mark. I’m so proud of what she’s done, applying this idea.
Her doing the articles meant OK, well that’s one less thing I’ve got to do. I did the calculation again. If I do this many articles, If I pay for them at say $10 each, If I do batches of 10, I’ll pay $100, will I sell two XSitePro softwares from 10 articles up there on my website or on Ezine, and it was just a return on investment decision.
So once I got support and articles, then I was able to leverage myself and do better stuff like really master pay-per-click advertising and work on my sales copy so that I could convert more people who came to my pages, etc. So it was really about trading up the level of activity that I was doing.
James: And like everyone else listening to this, I knew that I should have done it but I didn’t because it was being tight with the money.
Tim: Well, there’s tight with the money, there is where do I find these people, there is how do I train them so that they’d do as good if not better job than me, there’s how do I keep them busy.
The biggest thing to work out
James: Well the other thing is, I was making revenue by this stage. Here’s the big thing, I was already making money by this stage, and here’s the big thing, the biggest thing you’ve got to work out is what can you sell that converts. Don’t worry about traffic. Don’t worry about all these business models.
To start with, you need something that people can buy that you get paid for. Once you find that, that is the major needle in the haystack. Once you’ve got that, you can build from there. But without that, you’ve got nothing. So there’s no point building a blog that gets a lot of visitors but no one buys anything. There’s no point promoting products no one buys. You’ve got to find what you can promote that people will buy and for most experts, it’s pretty easy because they’re probably already buying something from you anyway. It’s just a repackaging thing.
If you’re not an expert, you could find an expert and be the marketer and work off their expertise. But the whole point is once you find something that converts, you’re not going to be able to scale past a certain point unless you build a team. Even a speaker like you, you could have a travel agent doing all the bookings. You could have a bookkeeper entering all the receipts. You can have a content wrangler, taking all your presentations, and transcribing them and turning them into blog posts and featured posts on other people’s sites. There’s a lot of things that you could build a team around even if you’re a sole expert and you still need to trade your time for money in a way.
Tim: Do you think you need to identify only those things that are in doing so going to create income? I mean some of those things for me, is it all about income or is it like some of those ideas you suggested doing?
James: It depends what result you want.
Tim: Yeah, I want to try it, so they’ll build an audience.
James: Remember the context of this. I’m talking about how you can make twice as much money in half the time. So you’re going to need leverage and the way that you score on that is effective hourly rate. Effective hourly rate, we covered it in the previous episode, is the best way to keep track of that.
So if you’re doing a $2 an hour activity, or in my case, if I’m writing articles, and I can’t type and I’m not a great writer, someone like Carrie for $10 was pumping out a fantastic article. I just trade money for a result instead of my time. So I got my time back and then I could make more money back than what I spend, then I’m ahead.
Tim: Love it, Jimmy.
Standard Operating Procedures
James: Let’s talk about it. The other thing is you start documenting everything that you do. Standard operating procedures. So even if you’re doing every task, write it down in a checklist format so that someone else could pick it up and follow it. This is what I had this discussion with Kerry. I said, “OK. This is what an article is. This is how you write them. This is about how long they need to be, like 500 words. They’ll have an introduction. They’ll make a point. They’ll argue it. They’ll maybe put a contrapoint. And then there’ll be some kind of summary or action step, or call to action at the end. We get to put our bio line, which is where people click. And we want to use particular keywords.”
We’ll write it down as a checklist. She’ll take notes and write it down as a checklist. That is now a standard operating procedure. Just like an hospital nurse or an airline pilot is going to use, and then you can move on from that task. And when I’m giving my team something that I used to do, that I don’t want to do anymore, which was the entire OTR process, I documented it all as an SOP. Even yesterday, I gave a task to one of my team members, and all I did is a screenshot with a description of what I’m doing, and I said, “Could you do this now?” And she went and probably spent hours on it, and I spent about 1 minute giving a standard operating procedure.
Tim: Where do you have all this stuff Jimmy? Do you use Google docs?
James: It’s really simple. Yeah, Google docs. It’s easy to share with your team. You can give them all an email address for the company and share it with the email. You can even share it with a group. So if you have a Web team and it’s a standard operating procedure for all of them, just share it with the Web team, or the SEO team, or the support team.
Also within your helpdesk if you’ve got a support team, you’ll be able to use macros, which are pre-written responses. So that’s a nice way to get some standard responses. And they’ll also have their own SOPs and Google docs for how to handle this or that. Someone’s credit card fails or they want to change from monthly to annual subscription. It’s all documented step by step.
Tim: Yeah, yeah. So you create it in advance? All standard operating procedures?
James: They create it most of the time. I don’t even see 90% of the SOPs in our business. I don’t want to know about it. They know the first SOP is whenever we do something more than once, we create an SOP. That’s the first SOP. The second SOP is that when we train people, we’re basically cross training them, every single person has a backup person for their job. We’ve even got SOPs for if someone needs a loan, like if their computer dies, we’ve got an SOP for if they qualify or not, how much we could lend, what will the term of a payment be, how much is the maximum, etc. SOP for anything that happens more than once.
Tim: Do you have personalized SOPs? I reckon you have, something like you know, how to get the surfboard serviced or…
James: Yeah. A lot of them I’d call habit because I do them so often. But yes. I do have personal SOPs. I keep them in a different place than Google apps. I actually use the reminders app on Apple because they’re just for me and I’m not sharing them with anyone. I’d give you an example of some of my SOPs. You and I went through one on an episode. It was how to setup a mastermind.
Tim: Oh yeah.
James: Remember that one?
Tim: I do. That was a business one. That wasn’t personal.
James: OK. Well let me see, I’ll see if I can find something that’s not business. That’s a tricky one.
Tim: I reckon you’d get to the point where you, if you could tag those notes on your iPhone, you’ll walk past somewhere, you could say, “Hey, remind me to this.”
James: Oh man, you’re getting technical. I’m a simple guy Timbo. Simple guy.
Tim: Oh, come one Jimmy. I telll you mate, the Internet. You need to embrace it. It’s catching. So you know, I’m not getting technical. I’m just part of..
James: I used to have SOP written up on my whiteboard. It was stuff like eat, drink, sleep by nine, two coffees, create one piece of content.
Tim: Oh Jimmy, you’re not only a verb, you’re a machine.
James: But I’ve made my life habit. I’ve made routines. Routines set you free. And my routine is like I’ll surf everyday. I’ll have a coffee in the morning. I’ve got my scheduling tool so that my calls fall within the time that is the best for me. And then I’ve got my days off where I can read and do other stuff.
All right. Let’s talk about this. There’s only two more things I’ll share.
The next thing one is I’ll just talk about Slack. Slack is the tool that glues our business together. It replaces email. It replaces Skype. And it’s a great place to run project management for small tasks. So that’s how I communicate with my team.
Tim: So you just need to be clear here, Slack is an app, isn’t it?
James: It’s an app. It works on anything. So after we’d finished this recording, I will just drag the file into the Dropbox that my team use for needs editing, that’s what it’s called. And then I’ll go to Slack, to my Octopus group, which is our publishing group, and I will say FreedomOcean 79, and it will be 3 Steps to Double Your Profit and Halve Your Work Hours Part Two.
And then I’ll put a picture from one of the slides from the presentation, and basically, that’s it. Just loaded FreedomOcean episode. They’ll go to the folder. We’d go to the “needs editing” folder. It will be named exactly how it should appear on the post and it will have the audio recording for your side, my side and a picture. I won’t see it again until it goes live on FreedomOcean.
There will be a for approval Slack channel, and they’ll actually post the headline, bullets, title, metadescription, and any other things that are relevant. And if I want to change it, I’ll just cut and paste back the changes. If I don’t want to change it, I don’t say anything or I could say OK or just leave it. It will get automatically published within 24 hours of being posted there if I don’t change it.
Tim: Is that what you could do on Slack?
James: Yup. The way we use Slack is very clever and it’s a great tool. It’s really hard to see why it’s so good before you use it but if you use it, you’ll never get someone to stop using it. It’s an incredible tool. And you can use a free version.
Tim: It’s pretty new, isn’t it?
James: I don’t know how new it is. Dan Norris was talking about it quite a while ago. But most businesses are running on it these days. It’s a phenomenal tool for a remote team. But you can also use it as a personal to-do list. There’s a thing called a slackbot, and that’s where I store things like the color palette for my website or a link to a page, say a live event page that I want to look at later. I can just store things there. So it’s a pretty cool tool. I recommend it.
Tim: Just for the benefit of our listeners, the thinking behind the word Slack because I haven’t looked at it, why is it called Slack?
James: I’ve got no idea.
Tim: I just thought it was kind of a fundamental understanding of…
James: It’s like an anti-verb of what you’d want people to be. Maybe that’s just an Australian thing about people being slack. But there’s another thing, you know taking up the slack.
Tim: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
James: So maybe it just pulls everything together. I don’t know. You should do an interview with whoever created that, they’re geniuses.
Tim: Well Jimmy, what’s the last one mate?
James: Batch sizes, small batch sizes.
Tim: What do you mean by that?
Tim: What do you do when you brew craft beer?
James: If you’re going to cook a wedding cake, and you’ve got a billion eggs and all the sugar and flour or whatever, what you might do is mix it all up, a small batch, and make some little cupcakes and cook them, and just taste it and see if it’s right. And then if you feel it’s right, cook the whole damn lot because you’ve tested it. It’s like what happened to me when I recorded my infoproduct, my computer cooked and I lost a whole hour.
If I had just done it in three separate modules, I would have got the first one out, checked it, and then the second one, and then the third, and if my computer cooked, I would have only lost the last module. And I’ve seen people do this all the time. Like they’ll send off work to their team. They’ll say, “Cut these up into pieces. Put some music on them, and then load them into the membership.” And they come back and they go, “Hang on, you know we can’t use AC/DC right, because it’s like royalty protected.” And they go, “Oh, OK.” And they’re like, “We have to redo the whole thing.”
It would be like doing an entire website and then go to a customer and say, “What do you think?” And they go, “I hate it. I hate it.” Instead we do a mock-up, like a design study and say, “Here’s a color board,” or “Here’s the mockup of what it might look like when it’s done,” And they can be, “I like this but with this font or that color there.” Once you get the wireframe done and the mock up, then you can say, “Yup, sign off on that.” Now we’ll spend 30 hours coding it into WordPress. But not before we get a signoff on this small batch.
Tim: Gotcha. Gotcha.
James: So the short answer is break projects into small pieces and do little test pieces first with your team. That’s the best way to train with them is to say, “Look. Go away and do the first part of this and come back and show me.” And then when they do that, you can say, “Perfect. OK do the rest like that,” or “Hang on, maybe I didn’t explain myself properly. Do this and do that. Go away and do this and come back.” So small batch sizes will avoid huge errors and a lot of rework.
Tim: Love it. Jimmy, that’s great stuff mate. So that’s pretty much the end of part two of a three-part series on how to double your income and halve the amount of working hours. Part one was all about yourself, part two was about team, and part three sounds like it’s going to be the business model you choose to adapt in your business. Is that right, Jimmy?
James: It is. It’s about your business and how you’re going to approach it. I’m going to talk about the profit formula. I’m going to talk about the profit formula but in particular, where we need to focus on that because it’s not enough just to know it, you could waste a lot of time in the wrong path. I’ve really cracked this one big time. This is where the big power comes at the end like BANG!
Tim: Love it. Well Jimmy, congratulations on the whole verb thing. You should go and celebrate tonight. Let your hair down if you had any.
James: What would your verb be Tim? What would doing a Timbo mean?
Tim: A verb for Timbo? I don’t know. Maybe they could leave a comment to the show notes. Be nice. I have a very thin skin but it’s something we should all aim to be, which is good. Jimmy, it’s been great to chat mate. Always love it.
James: Yeah, thanks for being available for us. Especially on your mobile, cruising into town. It’s wonderful you can share this time with us and hopefully, we’ll be back soon.
Tim: Well, that’s another episode of FreedomOcean. Please leave a comment. We read them all and James responds to them.
James: See you Timbo.