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Inspiration: Nick Santonastasso

Each day is an opportunity to watch, listen and learn.

I just finished listening to Tim Bilyeu’s interview Nick Santonastasso on Impact Theory (one of my favorite YouTube Channels). Tim is a great interviewer because he is always pushing to give the audience some kind of actionable information. This time it was all about mindset. Nick reminds the audience, and especially myself, that simply seeing an obstacle is not the end of the story. That just because there is an obstacle doesn’t mean that you are done but that the work of finding how to work around it begins.

Nick wanted to be a wrestler and he did it. It took taking what some may see as taking a drastic action but what he did was see the obstacle and find the way around it. My obstacles are much smaller in comparison. These are lack of time, motivation and my own fear. I can’t let these stop my forward progress, slow as it might be. What I can do and must do is start the work of finding the path around them.

I also love what Nick says at time 31:22 :

People are always scared to ask questions or ask for knowledge. Like people love that. Like people want to feel that they are needed. They want to give their knowledge to you. That makes people feel good.

Nick santonastasso

This is part of the reason that I am so excited every time I work on Good At. I want to help people get past the obstacle that is fear of asking a question or for knowledge. The plan is to do this via the GoodAt.com platform where people can easily be connected with someone that could help them out. But I’m asking people to take that first step, ask for help, and I will do the work to find a great match for them.

My fear is that I’m underestimating the fear that people have of asking but I’m so hopeful that I just have to get over my own worries. I am asking people to do a scary thing in sharing what they want to get good at, sharing what they need help with. And I asking people to trust that I will do the work to help them. I’m asking a lot of people but I’m trusting that people are going to surprise me. I’m so excited!

With love,
Marisol, Founder

Follow the Good At journey on….

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Quarterly update #1

Hello, Hello, Hello. This is an update on what has been going on with Good At. I hope to do this on a quarterly basis but I don’t want to promise as life finds a way to get in the way. So, on to what has happened this quarter.

  • Networking: This is one of the ways that I have decided to get the word out about Good At, and to learn what is working for others. I have gone to two networking events so far and found them to be fun but not right away useful. But I don’t think that these events are for quick results but for developing long term relationships. Attending these events is definitely part of a long term growth strategy. Another issue that I’m having with networking is that I’m not getting out of it what I thought I would. I thought that I would learn more from the experience that others are having. I don’t think that there is something lacking from the events but from me not going in better prepared. The questions that I’m asking are not leading to the kind of learning that I am hoping to get. But that is all part of it, right? Learning what works and what doesn’t one networking meeting at a time.
  • Marketing: Over the past quarter, I’ve gotten a bit more comfortable with the tools that I have chosen to create and share content. The tools are Canva (for making pretty posts), Socialbee (for scheduling). I need to get more content that is worth sharing which takes time to create and set up. Finding the time is something that I’m always struggling with but feel that I’m getting better at each day.
  • Personal: I’ve got a lot happening on the personal side. My dad has been ill, which has been really stressful. I’ve been lucky enough to be able to visit but will have to travel more for some future surgeries. I’m in my 3rd out of 10 classes for my MBA. I’ve been on the Keto train for about a year and a half but have hit a plateau. I have to do something to fix this. And well, all the usual stuff work, home, self-care. Whew, it’s been a busy quarter.
What are you trying to improve?

Moving forward

  • Podcast: In my previous blog post, I wrote that I was thinking about either starting YouTube-ing or podcasting, and I have decided. I will be starting a podcast. I decided on this because I want to communicate clearly, openly and regularly with anyone who may be following this journey. Yet, I’m finding that typing a blog post like this one is kind of hard for me to keep up on. If you know me personally, you know that I can talk an ear off. I am that person that you think twice about starting a conversation with because I will not let you go. I just love to chat and to dive deep on any topic. This can be a negative but because of this habit of mine, I feel that a podcast is a great choice. I can then use the podcast to create blog posts. I also hope to use the podcast to promote the amazing people who choose to become instructors using the Good At platform. I am so excited to see what kind of connections we can make and what stories will come out of those connections.
  • Help Request: Part of what I’m trying to do with Good At is help people find the help that they need. This would start with a request created by using the Contact page of the website, letting me know what they are looking for. For example, “looking for a hairdresser that can help me get good at doing my daughter’s hair” or “looking for someone who can help me use my circular saw” or “just bought my first home and don’t know what I should be doing to maintain it”. Then, the search would start with an e-mail to the e-mail list, posting on social media and then with more direct methods like sending out personal e-mails to people I think might be able to help. In the future, I may charge for a very time intensive search but I’ll have to think about that some more.

So, that is about it for what has happened and what I plan to make happen. This will be a crazy quarter which goes from now until Halloween (my favorite holiday!!!). During this time, I have 3 more MBA classes to take, a growing toddler, a household, weight loss/workout goals, the job, and travel for my dad to handle. Whew, all in a list like this makes it seem like a lot but I’ll be focusing on taking just one step at a time, and taking it one hour at a time. Good luck to us all!

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Marketing Strategy class

The Learning Never Ends.

If you read the post “Who is Good At and Why am I doing this?” then you know that I am also in school at this time. I’m enrolled in Louisiana State University Shreveport’s MBA program with an emphasis in entrepreneurship. This is the most economical program which is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). This program has me taking 1 class every 7 weeks with a break in between. I love this set up because as long as I follow the program, it will end and I will have an MBA. Then, I will be done with formal schooling!! I honestly don’t want any more after this, it really more than enough. But I do want it, I want this degree and to know that I have it under my belt. My current class is Marketing Strategy, dovetails really nicely with my work to make Good At work.

One of the concepts that I’m learning about surrounds the Product Life Cycle and the type of consumers who purchase products within each of the Life Cycle phases.

The Product Life Cycle (PLC) has 5 phases: Development, Introduction, Growth, Maturity and Decline. Each phase has its own look and feel.

  • Development is the time where a product or service is being created with no customers knowing that it exists.
  • Introduction is where you finally tell people that you exists. In this phase, a company will probably not be making any money and having to spend a bunch in marketing to teach people about what they are all about.
  • Growth is when people know that you exist. There should be an increase in sales, revenue and even competition.
  • Maturity a company will start to see a plateau or a decrease in sales. In maturity, people know that you are there but you are no longer shiny and new. People may have lost interest or there are other options that pull customers away from you. A company can live in this phase for a long, long, long time.
  • Last is decline lose of sales, lose of market share, lose of customers. Sometimes your product is a trendy thing and getting to decline can come so fast.

For Good At is technically out of the Development phase, we are now in the Introduction phase. This is where I’m having to do the work of educating people on what this is about and spread the word. Here are the things that I plan to do for this:

  • Social Media – I’ve created accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and I added Pinterest. Then, I use a tool called Canva to create pretty graphics for posts and SocialBee to schedule everything. This felt like a lot of work to set up but now that I have a process and the tools needed to create and post in an efficient and easy way, it’s not that bad. It just takes some time.
  • Networking – I have challenged myself to attend at least 1 networking event each month. It was hard to admit to myself that I would have to do this but how else do I get the word out? And I have to take my own advice about getting out from behind the keyboard and ask for help. I went to my first event recently and it was not that bad but I was so nervous that I almost chickened out. And to make sure that I stick to my plan, I have the next two events scheduled.
  • Blog posts – I also have to start sharing more on the blog. I feel that this is important so that you all can see that there is a real person here trying to do something. That I am also willing to ask for help and that I’m trying to get good at new things. I am probably the best testimonial of how great Good At can be. My goal is to have a new post each week but no less than twice a month.
  • Thinking about a podcast or YouTube channel – This is something that I’m not 100% sure about yet. I like the idea of a podcast because it freaks me out to show my face on video (I’m shy) but I like that I can interview the instructors no matter where they are. These interviews would focus on introducing the instructors and showing people why they are awesome. I also like the idea of a YouTube channel because somethings can only be understood by seeing what is happening but this would mean more effort, logistics, equipment maybe. This might be a future wish. But for now I’m just not sure about doing either option. What would you advise that I do?

Well, that is one of the things that I’m learning from my MBA program, there is a Product Life Cycle and actions to be taken during each phase. I’m probably going to be living in the introduction phase for a while.

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Strong Enough to ask for Help

So hard, so important

I think a lot about this platform, about the type of person that I should reach out to, and about the type of person who would reach out to get good at something. After all this thinking, I want to make sure that I focus on creating a safe place where a person can ask for help full of people who care enough to share. But I also feel that I am asking a lot of people to reach out and ask for help because it is hard to be vulnerable enough to reach out from behind our keyboards and ask.

Asking is the hardest part but we are here for you.
GoodAt.com

I know that asking for help is hard because I will get nervous to even ask a store clerk with help finding something. My habit is to wander around for a while before I will admit that I need help and then I’m still nervous to ask the question “Where could I find the soup?”. But my husband is not nervous, as soon as he sees someone to ask he asks, no wasted time wandering.

With Good At, I hope that some of the time we waste Googling, YouTubing, searching blogs and all the other ways that we try to get help will be eliminated because there will be someone that you can reach out to. Either it will be someone who is already on Good At offering their help or reaching out to the Good At Crew to start a search for someone helpful.

I also hope that having the focus be on connecting in one-on-one sessions makes getting the help you want easier because you only have to be vulnerable in front of one other person. This is also due to some personal feeling about classes. I find that when I am in a class setting I feel like I can’t interrupt or keep asking for clarification. Like I have a 1 question limit. Even though you hear instructors say things like “If you have a question ask because most likely others do to” or “There are no dumb questions”, I still feel like maybe I should not be asking. Or again I waste time trying to figure it out on my own after the class is over. These are feeling that I see in others and am guessing can be eased by having one-on-one sessions which can be as fast or slow as you need, where the instructor is focused on you and can feel out if you need more information, and that teach you exactly what you are looking for instead of having to be general for all those attending.

So, how do I create a safe place where people can ask for help? To be honest, I’m not 100% sure. I hope that having a review system will help because only the best instructors will have great ratings. I hope that by focusing on one-on-one in person learning that people will feel less nervous to reach out for help. I hope that you will give me and the instructors a chance to help you out. And I hope that you let us know how we can make things better.

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List of dreams

Hey! I keep dreaming up all these amazing combinations of people getting good at things by using Good At to connect with others who are good at that thing. This is just a list of the combinations that I’ve been dreaming of. The hope is that I will be able to update this list as my dreams come true. And if you have a combination that you’d like to see happen, let us know!

Where will your dreams take you?

  • A fashion blogger helping someone get good at personal fashion with a shopping trip
  • A hair stylist helping a single dad get good at taking care of his daughter’s hair
  • A barber helping a single mom’s son get good at shaving
  • A handy person helping a first time home owner getting good at taking care of their house with a home care visit. This one is kind of personal to me as I really appreciated how our home inspector did not just tell us that our house was ok. He took the time to walk us through each room and major system, and gave us a check list of the maintenance that will be needed for each. I have only bought one home and therefore do not know, but I expect that this is not routine service. I think that Good At could help make this an option for new home owners, or a person buying any home who would really want to learn how to care for it.
  • A landscaper helping a new homeowner get good at maintaining their new property. This is similar to the handy person helping a new home owner learn about their home. There also is learning to be done on how to care for a new yard. We were lucky when we bought our house it only had grass, not much to learn there but there are homes that already have gardens or plants that may need specific care.
  • A landscaper helping someone get good at urban farming with a home visit. This could help them understand where to plant, what their dirt conditions are and watering options.
  • A mechanic helping a car owner getting good at changing a tire and general car maintenance. Or helping a teen who is new to driving learn about the maintenance of the car.
  • A knitting shop helping their customer get good at knitting with one on one lessons
  • A hiking enthusiast helping others get good at packing their gear with a shopping trip to an outdoor retailer
  • A gamer helping others get good at Fortnite with a video conference lesson
  • A person who speaks a second language helping someone else get good at the language with in person hang outs. I know that there are language tutors and Good At would be great for them but I also imagine this being a more casual thing with people who are native speakers but maybe not formal teachers. The #1 thing that people seem to need is practice and not necessarily more lessons.
  • A vocal coach helping someone get good at karaoke. Again, similar as practicing a second language, I imagine that these lessons would be more casual.
  • A hairdresser helping someone get good at doing their hair with a home visit to show them with their own tools how to get gorgeous. We all know the frustration of only having great hair the day of the hair appointment. Well, Good At could help people look great everyday.
  • A beauty blogger helping an adult child to get good at doing their elderly mother’s hair and makeup
  • A home cook helping someone getting good at making a special meal as a surprise for their loved one
  • A person who is good at Excel helping someone get ready for entering a new job
  • A bicyclist helping a person who never learned how to ride a bicycle with a private lesson. I put this on the list because I don’t know how to ride a bike and I tried to find someone to teach me for a while but could never find anyone. Finally there was a program for adult learners, which is where I learned that I am never going to be a bike rider. Instead I bought a Catrike trike what I love!
  • A Cos-player giving instruction to a person who wants to get into the scene
  • An actor helping someone get better at improv
  • A Preper (Is that even how you spell this word?) helping someone get good at their household emergency preparedness
  • A community organizer helping someone get good at understanding their local politics, voting and how it all ties together
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Am I screwing up already?

Maybe…..but I just can’t imagine this being any different. What am I talking about? Well, the general advice for creating a two-sided-marketplace (which is what Good At is) is that you have to pick a niche to focus on and I’m not doing that. I’m not focusing on only knitters, car gurus, artists or any other kind of creative/handy person. I am focusing on everyone and this maybe a huge mistake.

The advice is good and make sense because you can create exactly what a small group of people need and then grow from there. But this just doesn’t feel right to me for Good At. For example, sites like Udemy, Wyzant or thinking big YouTube don’t focus on just one niche but they do focus on one type of offering. Video tutorials, tutors, videos. And Good At offers one-on-one learning.

Humans, I feel, are not just about one thing or interested in one thing at a time. Today, I’ll need help on excel but tomorrow I may need help with my garden. I don’t want to be put in a niche and this may be the downfall for Good At but I have to try it my way first and see where that takes me.

But in a way I am picking a niche in that I am creating Good At for a group of people who are willing to share their know-how, talent, and abilities in a one-on-one manner. Compared to how many people want to create e-books, video tutorials, or courses, this might not be too many people and that is a niche, right?

So, good, bad or otherwise I own this choice and cross my fingers hard that I’m not wrong.

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Happy Birthday, Papi!

Today is my dad’s birthday and the day that I have chosen to actually launch this project. It feels that it will be a lucky day for me. This includes actually telling the world that Good At exists and reaching out to a few people that I feel would benefit from using the platform. I am both excited and super scared. It means that Good At moves from being just an idea that I have been working on alone and safe in my own head, to something real that I hope will start to help people. Here we go!!

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What am I getting Good At today?

I am getting Good At setting up this WordPress site with the help of a friend who was able to help me figure out why this page of blog posts was not showing up on the site. Maybe there is someone out there who is good at WordPress and would like to show others about it, if so go to GoodAt.com and create a listing to help people (and me) get good at WordPress.