Doing Work You Love (and Getting Paid For It)


passion and money
Monetizing your passion is both possible and exciting to consider. Too many people have been able to do it to ignore the opportunity!

This area is for the wonderful new friends at the Doing Work You Love discussion.

I enjoyed meeting each of you and dialoguing with you during our discussions. We worked through some thinking about the new economy and how to launch. My goal was to provide perspective around how others are thriving today with our new models and opportunities for distribution and then get specific about your goals.

The great thing is that you can choose to go out there, work hard and make something happen without needing permission or getting in line. It’s a matter of connecting, embracing failure and using the systems and information that are available to everyone.

Recap of Doing Work You Love

“What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” ~ from Who Moved My Cheese

Look for the new cheese!

  1. New Economy
    • It’s not about information advantage any longer. We all have access.
    • We are no longer rewarded for being a good boy or girl and following the rules.
    • The creative class has the advantage.
    • It’s about talent and your belief system.
    • You choose whether you are going to be a commodity or a brand.
    • You must know your strengths and weaknesses. Live only in your strengths to succeed.
  2. Distribution
    • The internet has changed distribution. You can go direct.
    • The Long Tail provides opportunity for everyone. It’s less about the hits.
    • The funnel has been turned upside down.
    • You can reach your customer directly
    • You don’t need permission.
  3. Pick Yourself
    • Think about buying not selling.
    • Selling is a process, not an event. It’s not about closing someone. It’s about thinking through connection steps.
    • Noone likes to be sold
    • Position and build a referral engine
    • Get that first customer. It’s the most important thing.
    • Use the lean startup approach of iteration and small risks.

Become a brand and work backwards. Ask yourself how you can be worth a thousand dollars for something you offer. Start there and increase your value.

Actions to Consider

We covered a lot of information and you can take specific steps to help yourself on the entrepreneurial journey. Here are a few:

  • Learn about your strengthsClick here to learn about the strengths testing I do with my business clients. It is critical for success. You can order the test as a start of exploration and starting a strategy built around your strengths that you can monetize.
  • Sign up for an account at Study it and put your shingle out. See if you can get hired for a job. It will show you what a commodity looks like, but it can also be motivating to see how you can start and increase your positioning from commodity to brand.
  • Learn how to set up a business and get going or grow your own businessContact me for a consultation to explore.
  • Get a first customer. It’s one of hardest things to do, but you can learn a lot about what is valuable and start building through experience.
  • Provide a platform for yourself to start communicating and positioning. This will help a business idea to get started and be a valuable part of growing an idea that can translate into a business.

Resources to Help You on the Journey

I have shared concepts from my own experiences as an entrepreneur building companies for myself and my business customers. I also do quite a bit of reading and writing on the subject. You can always subscribe to my blog to receive valuable strategies.

Also, here are some of the books I would recommend to reinforce the dialogue and further think through strategies for growing a business you love:

The Entrepreneur Mind

Learn principles and the journey of a computer science major and how he learned to work with both technology and business deals. He is young and shares his learnings from 100 blog posts.

How to Win at the Sport of Business

We all know Mark Cuban from his time on Shark Tank and ownership of the Dallas Mavericks. He shares his story and lessons along the way as a regular guy trying to figure things out and applying himself to learning relentlessly to keep connecting the dots for the right opportunity.

Millionaire Fastlane

A blunt and raw read that helps you think about systems, passivity and creating businesses that cash flow quickly. The paradigm works well to filter out the emotion of many businesses that are not worth the time.

Ready, Fire, Aim

Michael Masterson shares how a business progresses through four different stages and what the dynamics are for each stage from early startup to maturity. I would focus heavily on phase 1. Selling is critical and dwarfs the other priorities.

Cash Flow Quadrant

This is an important book to break down how money and who you are works. It is similar to the concept of commodities vs. brand we discussed. Kiyosaki of Rich Dad fame is classic in his simplistic style to break down complex issues. Learn the four types of cash flow affect your lifelong earning and leverage. They are not all equal. If you can overcome fear, you can step into the higher opportunity quadrants.

The Mesh

Lisa Gansky illuminates great business models built around high tech platforms merged with underutilized resources. Combine them and you can create businesses like Zip Car or Amazon that centers around transactions and reducing friction points.


This is a great read on specific tactics and strategies to build marketing systems that will promote you. I do this for my clients, along with many more sophisticated systems and strategies. If you can build an audience, then the game of selling becomes much more easy.

To Sell is Human

This is a book that illuminates what it is like to move others in a world of information symmetry. Our need to become problem identifiers will separate us from the problem solvers of the old economy.

Steal Like an Artist

Austin Kleon is a great artist who gets the point across how to integrate knowledge and share it professionally. Very important for someone who is trying to establish their brand and find their voice.

The Lean Startup

Startups are not about perfection. It is about continuous failure and iteration. There is too much uncertainty to have a rigid plan. Learn how to approach the process with a framework that has empirical success.

The $100 Startup

Great stories of entrepreneurs that built businesses from hard work, ingenuity and knowledge of their specific markets. The inspiration alone will help you get started. It doesn’t cost much to get going.


This is a powerful read from Seth Godin on how to build trust, have vision and grow opportunities. It takes leadership with people that like you and get you. It’s the pathway for selling. It starts with who you are and where you are going far before thinking of trying to sell your products.


Ebook with Further Strategies

For those that donated to the talk, I will be delivering an ebook with more specifics to help you get going. I will let you know when this comes out and will send it out to you.

Last Thoughts

There was a lot of great discussion and I am sure a lot of questions that were unanswered. If nothing else, I hope the time served to catalyze your own thinking and actions.

I have shared these concepts with large audiences and some people take action and many others watch life go by. I hope you will take a next step that will make you both happy and prosperous.

If you have any further questions, feel free to fill out the form below. I would also appreciate any comments or thoughts on how this impacted you. Thank you.

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