In Which I Take Issue With Chris Curran
Our loyal listeners may have noticed that our opening drumbeat, courtesy of our good friend Chris Curran, features Ralph’s name. But I want to know why Ralph gets top – and only – billing? Is this the Ralph show? I think not.
So I issued a challenge to Chris to work my name into a drumbeat. Creatively.
Let’s see what we get.
Last week Ralph apologized to various people and today I have to issue my own apology, to the great nation of the USA. In last week’s episode I mistakenly mentioned the Whopper as being an item you could eat at Mc Donald’s.
Are there enough mea culpas? I wonder.
In Which We Admire Chris Curran
After I expressed my demand for a drum track with my name in it, Ralph mentioned something that Chris did with his businesses that was very clever.
Chris has a couple of businesses. One is called Podcast Engineering School, which teaches people how to professionally record, mix, master and engineer podcasts. The school is for people who want a career in podcasting.
The other is called Podfudge, an agency that provides editing and marketing services to podcasters.
Chris had one of his engineering school graduates produce The Podcast Engineering Show, which is Chris’s podcast. The show sounds great, which goes to prove that Chris is churning out qualified professionals who even HE is willing to hire and trust with his own show.
He also hires his grads for his editing business. And Ralph thinks that’s pretty smart. It’s a way to market your product (in this case, school) – not by saying how great you are and not by talking about all the wonderful things you do – but by actually showing it.
Show Don’t Tell
We had an experience a few weeks ago where we went to a business dinner with colleagues, and in the course of the conversation we gave some advice to one of them about how he might improve his Facebook ads.
A few days later, we were at a networking meeting with this same colleague. He stood up and told the room that after implementing our advice, he immediately got seven new leads for his business. We didn’t have to tell people that we know what we’re doing. He told them for us. And that’s worth more than any dollar amount you can spend on an ad.
I know a woman who knits clothing. And she wears her own clothing. So when she’s out and someone says, “Hey, nice sweater!” She tells them she makes them for a living. It’s a great way to demonstrate that she stands by her own product.
When you do a good job for people, when you stand by what you do, then your work will speak for itself. And if other people speak for you, all the better!
A Travel Wrapup
Last week we talked about our trip, what we spent and how we can budget next time.
This week we summarize a Top Ten list of easy ways to save money so you can travel even if you don’t have a big budget.
- Bring food. Grabbing Mc Donald’s, grabbing a coffee or a donut or a snack can really add up. Eat at your destination but avoid expensive food traps.
- Bring water. Don’t spend two bucks a bottle at a convenience store when you can spend two bucks a case at the grocery store.
- Go where the tourists aren’t. Go to a beach town during the winter or the desert in the summer. It may not be your idea of the perfect vacation but you can still get away and do it a whole lot cheaper.
- Camp. If you’re adventurous, grab a tent and pitch it. Some campgrounds have great amenities like wifi and electricity.
- Use apps. Hotel apps can help you get really good deals. If you don’t mind the risk, you can get some great deals by just showing up and getting what’s left.
- Be flexible. Do things that you might ordinarily think you don’t want to do. With the right mindset you can make the best of things you might not have expected to enjoy.
- Use a credit card with points. Whether you get points that you can use for a purchase later, or cash back that you can use to pay for whatever you charged, take advantage of the opportunity.
- Find a library. The wifi is free and it’s a great place to work. Plus, if you’re the camping type, you can use the library to work instead of sitting in a tent all day.
- Hub it. Find one place to stay and travel out from there instead of moving from place to place. You can get much better deals on rooms sometimes when you stay a few weeks or a month.
- Keep receipts. If you’re working and traveling, you can write off at least part of the trip on your tax return, and that can save you money.
Let People Help You
We share war stories today about people who insist on doing things themselves.
Ralph talks about trying to help our friend Sophia with her website, only to be un-helped by her interfering. To be fair, Ralph volunteered to help and Sophia wanted to make things easier for him – by doing some of them herself.
The problem arose when she started doing things she didn’t understand, which got in the way of what Ralph was doing and ended up making everything take a lot longer and be a lot more complicated.
In the end, they both could have handled it differently. Ralph by being clear about his role and what he would do, and Sophia by simply letting him do it.
But we get it. When someone helps you, you feel a certain responsibility. You’re grateful, and you may feel bad about adding to someone’s workload.
If that’s you, and someone has offered to help you, let them! Just find another way to thank them.
A few weeks ago we called a colleague in the HVAC business to help us with a furnace problem. We didn’t ask or expect him to do it for free, but he did. Instead of freaking out and worrying about it, we simply bought him and his wife a gift certificate for dinner.
People like to help. YOU probably like to help. So let people help you when they can, and then be grateful. Sometimes that’s enough. If you can return the favor, do it.
Sophia wanted to be considerate of someone who was helping her so she tried to do things herself. But some people do things because they simply can’t NOT do them.
We had a client for a month who micromanaged everything we did with his website, until we finally gave him his money back and told him he wasn’t ready to hire someone.
He ended up getting a college kid to do it because he could sit there and point over her shoulder and bark orders.
But at what cost? He could have afforded to hire someone. He just refused to. He wanted to control it himself. Except while he was micromanaging his website, he was not out selling.
People who do everything themselves risk two consequences. One is doing a thing wrong. Professionals are professionals for a reason. We don’t replace furnaces or fix car engines, we call professionals. We don’t know how to do their job they way they do. We don’t know what we don’t know.
The second is the opportunity cost. What are you NOT doing when you’re doing something you could have delegated?
Delegating is a skill that more people need to learn.
We Want To Eat Sophia’s Cows
But that’s an apology for next time.
More Things & Stuff
If you’re thinking of a career in podcasting, check out Podcast Engineering School.
Listen to the Podcast Engineering Show produced by one of the school’s alumni.
If you’re a podcaster, visit Podfudge for editing and marketing services.
Check out our friend Sophia Lemon’s podcast Double Exposure.
And her other podcast, Ridiculously Happy People.
If you’re in eastern Canada and looking for a photographer, Sophia is one of the best you’ll find.