In the Trenches 006: Creating New Paradigms with Clay Hebert

You Can Change Your LifeClay Hebert

Or at least that’s what Clay Hebert did.

In 2008, Clay was at a crossroads.  Should he continue to work for Accenture, where he had a guaranteed salary and could easily move up the ladder?  Or should he branch off on his own path, a path completely uncertain and paved with obstacles and possible failure points.

It turns out serendipity was on his side: it just so happened that as Clay began soul-searching, he noticed a blog post by Seth Godin titled ‘If You Could Change Your Life’…

Would you?

And for Clay, the answer was yes.

Starting From Scratch

After the 6 month intensive MBA program, Clay went straight into bootstrapping his first business: Tribes Win.

At Tribes Win, Clay worked with a plethora of clientele, from entrepreneurs to authors, and helped them build their Tribes.

After the success with Tribes Win, Clay moved onto bootstrapping two more companies: Workhacks.com and Spindows.com

Both businesses have the chance to redefine their genres (and yes, you should check them out).

Things we talk about:

Spindows

  • The fear of walking away from a guarantee into the unknown
  • How to overcome fear
  • The difference between Freelancer and Entrepreneur (and why it’s crucial you know the difference)
  • “Product Market Fit” – and why you need to use it, whether you’re a writer or an entrepreneur
  • The power of the lean startup versus conventional business development
  • Why you should TEST and VALIDATE your business before you jump into your next venture
  • How to multi-task like a ninja…but also why it’s not recommended for most people!

Quotes to Live by From the Interview:

“Don’t start by building, start by validating.” (tweeeeet!)

“Get out of the building and talk to actual customers.” (tweet it!)

Socialize:

Twitter

Facebook

LinkedIn

Additional Show Notes:

Crush It

Hugh Mcleod

Spindows

Purple Cow

Tribes Win

Work Hacks

The Lean Startup

Launch Rock

Skillshare

How to Make an Instantly Viral Product (This Might Not Work)

Remarkable

This is a word not used often enough to describe the type of product we SHOULD be trying to produce.

When we create a remarkable product, it means we’ve built something that not only impacts the person receiving the product (consumer, purchaser, reader, etc.), but we’ve impacted them in such a way that they tell others about the product.

This is the quintessential element to virality.

Viral content becomes viral because it’s something worth sharing, spreading, and talking about with others.

If the product or project isn’t remarkable, it can’t become viral (the product can be remarkable and not viral, but a viral product cannot be unremarkable).

Remarkable does not mean good; it doesn’t mean perfect; it doesn’t mean cheapest, fastest or strongest; it doesn’t even mean best.

Remarkable means, for whatever reason, the person receiving the product wants (is compelled) to share and spread the word.

That’s exactly how I felt with Seth Godin’s Kickstarter project for The Icarus Deception.  And I’m actually not even talking about his new book, The Icarus Deception (which is in and of itself remarkable), but about his limited edition compilation book: “This Might Work / This Might Not Work” (an abridged, physically smaller version will be released around Christmas and it’s titled: Whatcha Gonna Do with That Duck?)

The pictures don’t do the actual product justice:

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It’s massive, it’s beautiful, it’s unique, it’s spellbinding, it’s impressive, it’s unexpected, it’s one of a kind, it’s generous, it’s epic, it’s art…

It is remarkable.

Raising the Bar

This book – “This Might Work / This Might Not Work” – just raised the bar in terms of producing something worthwhile, epic, and generous; it raised the bar for remarkable.

Of course, that doesn’t mean the next thing you must produce should be an enormous compilation of your work via a successful Kickstarter campaign.

What it means is that if you care hard enough to be remarkable, the product you create will show it.

Keep working, keep creating, and keep building.

And, above all, never stop caring – we need more remarkable products.

 


 

p.s. Thanks Seth for caring and making something remarkable

do the work (what Steven Pressfield can teach us about being remarkable)

How often do you start your day backwards?  You know, by checking email, or phone messages, or reading the news?

Do any of those things directly impact the project you’re working on, or the brand you’re creating, or the book you’re writing?

Do any of them impact the rest of your day at all?

do the work

My guess is that if you didn’t check email or read the news, you’d be just fine.  Life would go on without a hiccup.

These things don’t impact your day because they are easy, trivial activities.

And that’s precisely why we start our days with them.

 

It’s easier to do trivial things that are urgent than it is to do important things that are not urgent – like thinking – and it’s also easier to do little things we know we can do, than to start on big things that we’re not so sure about. – John Cleese

 

The problem isn’t that we check email, or send text messages, or read the news, it’s that we don’t use our time the way we ought to (if you care about drawing your own map, that is).

This lack of action compounds over time.

The minutes we spend checking email, sending texts, and reading the news eventually adds up to a day…and then a week…and then a year…

And in ten years, we still haven’t written that novel, or built that business, or bought that investment property.

 

Right now a still, small voice is piping up, telling you as it has ten thousand times before, the calling that is yours and yours alone.  You know it.  No one has to tell you.  And unless I’m crazy, you’re no closer to taking action on it than you were yesterday or you will be tomorrow.  You think Resistance isn’t real?  Resistance will bury you. – Steven Pressfield

 

When we waste the beginning of our day on something impactless (yes, I made that word up), we are giving up precious hours we could devote to something important.

Instead of using daily action to propel us toward the realization of  our goals, we slowly kill off any chance of doing something remarkable.

Cutting out time during the day to do the work is the first step.

 

Figure out what time you can carve out, what time you can steal, and stick to your routine.  Do the work every day, no matter what.  No holidays, no sick days.  Don’t stop. – Austin Kleon

 

The next step – the one that requires us to take an even harder look at ourselves – is to determine if what we’re actually creating is any GOOD.

 

Life’s not about getting stuff done, it’s about getting the right stuff done.  It doesn’t matter how productive you are if the ideas you’re building on don’t represent the best you have to offer.  And the best you have to offer rarely ever comes when you’re filling every nook and cranny of mind-space, every waking moment of every day. – Jonathan Fields

 

Once you’re able to form a habit around doing important, GOOD work every day, you’re on the path to creating something remarkable, and therefore being remarkable.

Whatever you do, don’t stop.

Do the work (the important work) and do it every day.