Change is gradual
Have you changed direction?
Are you still the best choice to deliver this product or service?
What do you have new to offer?
Where do you want to go next?
by Cara Lumen
One of the reasons we find ourselves standing immobilized by the number of ideas we have is because we do not have a method for choosing the right or best or most attractive ideas. Here are some steps.
Major Point #1: Remember that not making a decision is a decision not to take action.
Major Point #2: Decision making is the study of identifying and choosing alternatives based on the values and preferences of the decision maker.
You are the creator of this project. You will make the decisions about who it is for, what needs it is to meet and what form it will take. A decision is simply a matter of choosing among alternatives. It is not about making a choice between right and wrong. You choose right now, based on who you are and what you know. Two years from now you’ll make a different choice. But this is now. Follow your heart and your intuition and simply choose.
Make your decisions on paper. One of the reasons making a detailed table of contents for an information product is such a vital step is because it is easier to reorganize a few bullet points than whole chapters and an outline makes certain you identify and develop the core concepts. Make a list and rearrange your ideas to discover the emphasis of the project.
Make your decisions as you go along. If you decide to write an ebook, stick with it till it is done. You can write the teleclass next. If you decide on a focus for one information product complete it and simply make notes of other ways you can approach it. Use those ideas in future products or articles or blog posts.
Stay focused on your core concepts. A creative, fertile mind will see a myriad of ways to make a particular point. 1) be certain you are developing only the chosen core concepts for that project, one concept at a time and 2) be certain that how you are expressing it will help your audience get it.
Keep the alternatives on a separate list. As you work you will think of many other things that could be said, or written, or developed. Simply put them on a separate list – your “Idea List” if you wish. That way you know you have captured them but do not have to stop to explore them and can stay focused on the work you are doing.
Commit and follow through. Once you have made the decision and have started what you are going to do, put the “what if’s” aside and do it with commitment.
©2010 Cara Lumen
You might also like:
by Cara Lumen
I first became aware of an easy way to make stuff happen when I became a Reiki Master Teacher in New York City years ago. I had come back from being Certified, I was ready to teach and my thought was “how do I make this happen?” Then I realized I simply had to make it up – just the way I wanted it to be. So I picked up my calendar and started writing in dates for first degree classes and second degree classes – allowing enough time for there to be two first degree classes before there was a second degree class. That’s it. That’s the big secret. Simply schedule it.
I recently was asked to provide a whole year of training for a membership site. It involves 12 introductory calls on topics of interest that would introduce the upcoming six three-week telecourse. First I decided on the six telecourses, then I thought of topics that would lead into them. I picked a date on the calendar to begin and I had my schedule.
Then it occurred to me that if I’m preparing all of this material for a closed community I needed to find a way to leverage all the work into value for my own community. So once again, I pulled out my calendar and scheduled three teleclasses for the first half of the year accompanied by some free intro teleclasses to be offered to my own community. I made longer classes out of shorter ones and repurposed intro talks for the two communities.
And that’s when I begin to feel full up. The schedule looks great. I love to write teleclasses. And that’s a lot of work over a long period of time. As you make up your schedule be realistic about what you can do. Remember, scheduling it is only half the fun.
Fortunately I’m working two and a half months ahead on the teleclasses so I’m having a great time creating the courses because I’m not pressured. And I’m expanding a six week course I will give in January into six three week courses for the membership site so the material will only grow richer. And it will all turn into a book at the end of the year. Leverage every idea you have. Repurpose. Chunk up. Chunk down. One idea can show up in a lot of different costumes just like an actor in a play. The actor it the same, the role is different.
I love to make stuff up and I never schedule my creative time so that I feel pressured. Allow yourself time to do your very best – to make the most stimulating handouts, to find the richest resources, to outline the most fascinating intro calls. Work steadily. Schedule time to create. Make a project management schedule so you get written what you need to write – steadily, without pressure. Mark off whole mornings or afternoons so you can concentrate and get your work done in a flow of deep concentration. Enjoy your own creative process.
For me the fun stuff is in making up the course or writing the book. But I have made a list of what I have to do surrounding each and every event or product launch. It’s a template I use for each project. I have four sections: Creation, Participant Emails, Publicity and Promotion. I work in Word with a column to check off when each step is completed. These are the steps I take for a teleclass that can be translated into any product launch. Here’s how it is set up:
I start actively promoting six weeks out. There is an Early Bird special with a deadline. But even before that I have been talking about the product in my blog posts and emagazine to begin to get people interested.
Statistics now say that people need to hear of something 24 or more times before they will buy. That’s why I start mentioning that I am working on the product a few months out to start an awareness in my community. I can’t bring myself to flood my community with emails so I got with this schedule.
It’s like having two separate projects – one to create the product or service, the other to launch it. As you work on your schedule add these promotional steps to your list and leave time to get them done.
Every time I write a new ebook or create a new telecourse I learn something new. It may be that I write a better landing page and thus strengthen my skills at that. It may be that I deepen my own knowledge while deciding how I want to teach a certain point. And always it is about the joy of preparing something that will serve others – that will give them information that will make a difference, or motivate them to take a bigger next step, or inspire them to know they can do more.
If you have an idea it is probably yours to do. And if you choose to do it simply put it on your calendar and start talking about it in your blog posts and emagazine to start creating interest and to get yourself committed to the project. Then do it. That’s how to make stuff happen.
© 2010 Cara Lumen
You might also like:
by Cara Lumen
You need to take time to work on your business rather than in your business. This means quarterly contemplation about what’s working and what’s not and based on that what to release and what to keep.
You need a chunk of time to plan a new project – do your research, create an outline, write a landing page to focus your intention.
You need a chunk of time to plan the topics of your blog posts or article submission.
This is brain time. This is time you stop doing and allow yourself to feel and think and observe and choose. Put a planning chunk on your calendar. Putting it at the end of the week gives you time to acknowledge what you have accomplished and prioritize for the next week. Project planning can be scheduled any time. Again, you need to mark off several hours so you can really sink down into your ideas and pull out the best ones. Schedule planning time on your calendar in healthy sized weekly chunks.
You need time to prepare. This is the time you spend writing the landing page for your new product or service. It is time spent designing a cover for your ebook, or writing a new worksheet for your coaching practice. It can be about outlining a new course, designing handouts for it, figuring out bonuses and schedules. It’s about brainstorming blog topics and product ideas. It’s based on planning but it is about moving your projects forward.
I try to blog three times a week but I write them in one sitting and post them for the week so I just need one chunk of production time for the major part of my blog. It’s important to me so I do it Monday morning. I want to continue to post articles to www.ezinearticles.com so in this blog producing chunk I now make time to post at least one article on line. Adding one small step to an existing time chunk can keep you moving forward.
Part of my producing chunk is about leveraging – turning a teleclass into a home study course for instance. Or taking a radio script and making three articles out of it. Fleshing out my Cornerstone Content. Seeing if I have enough blog posts on a particular topic to create a new ebook. Putting existing ebooks on Kindle. You can see how you need a good chunk of production time each week.
We need to keep learning. Schedule time to be on a conference call that will bring you new knowlege, read a business book, go exploring on the internet, or take a tutorial in a program you already use. I’m reading the revised version of Michael Port’s Book Yourself Solid (I’m in it) and going to write a book review for Sharon Sayler’s What Your Body Says.” (I wrote the exercises) I want to order Mitch Meyerson’s “Success Secrets of the Social Media Superstars.” And I have several content development workbooks I want to study to enrich my “How to Craft a Magnetic Information Product” course. A learning chunk is vital to keep expanding our horizons. You should schedule a learning chunk every week.
What is important for you to accomplish this quarter? That is the one project you are going to focus on. Break it down into steps and schedule them on your calendar. Keep focusing on this one project till it is complete. It’s a Move Ahead Chunk on one outstanding project.
In my case it’s a content development course I am creating. My steps are:
1. Design the content, the experientials and the handouts
2. Decide how long the course must be
3. Decide what bonuses will go with it
4. Schedule the time to give it – allow time to begin marketing it 6 weeks out.
5. Write a landing page
6. Pick a price
7. Write the invitational emails that will precede it.
8. Expand the outline
9. Write the content
10. Produce the product
11. Promote the course
Some of this is planning, some preparing, some producing and some learning but you have to schedule 2-3 hour chunks of time for a Move Ahead time on a special project. This could be an information product, a new service, or even learning a new skill like more about video or audio. Mark off an afternoon to be creative. Then create. Give yourself chunks of time to plan, prepare, produce, learn and move ahead. Then notice how quickly your business takes off.
© 2010 Cara Lumen
You might also like: