Archive for May, 2012

April update

Posted in Uncategorized on May 15, 2012 by edcook

I thought I would write a quick update on my infopreneurial journey so far. I think the main challenge to date has been maintaining a healthy level of self confidence and self belief to keep going. I also think another important factor if you are starting your own business is to identify and build a relationship with a mentor. As I mentioned, before I started the thought leader process I met with Chris Curnow to ask for advice. Upon completing the Thought Leaders course in Sydney I now catch up with Chris twice a month to discuss how I am tracking and obtain guidance on what I need to do in the future to ensure I am successful. This not only provides me with structure but also keeps me motivated and helps banish any doubts I am having.

Another lesson I have learnt over the past few weeks is to focus on a specific message and market from the start rather than trying to launch too many services. I think the reason I tried to do too many things to start with was that I wanted to get some money coming in as soon as possible. I have now focused on one service which is ‚ÄúLeverage your MBA”, this has provided focus and enabled me to set clear objectives on what I want to achieve and what actions I’m going to take to reach these identified, specific goals. Last week I met with 2 fellow Melbourne Business School alums and ran through my ideas with them, the feedback I got was extremely positive, they definitely thought there was a need with MBA students for the workshop series that I’m looking to launch. The challenge now is getting in front of the right people and starting to pitch my ideas to them.

I have also reworded a two-page brochure I created, putting identified problems at the beginning and then communicating solutions to these problems in the rest of the document. The fact that I have both been MBA student and worked with many over the past 4 years will hopefully give me some accurate insights into the challenges that they still face.

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Focus and decision time

Posted in Uncategorized on May 15, 2012 by edcook

Most of my first week was spent making my website vaguely presentable and working on the IP for my first 2 ideas. I had a very useful meeting with a contact of mine who is the CEO at a company called Insync Surveys, this gave me a good insight into what a business of a similar size might want in terms of a service.

My first idea is most closely tied to my past experience. The idea is developing a workshop and mentor series helping MBA students and graduates leverage their MBA. Over the past 4 years I’ve established myself as the go to person for MBA students (primarily from Melbourne Business School) looking for career advice. The topics I plan to cover include: Making the right career choice, positioning yourself in the right market, researching target companies and potential contacts, building and nurturing a business network and finally securing a role and proactively managing your post-MBA career. This would benefit current students and also Alumni.

I also met with Murray Noble, the owner of a recruitment firm and discussed possible opportunities to work together around presenting at CPA conferences etc. When you start to think about it, there are lots of people in a similar situation to me who deliver a focused service, the fact that entrepreneurs achieve more by focussing opens up the potential for collaboration without stepping on each others toes.

I’ve got a meeting with my Thought Leaders mentor, Chris Curnow today and have compiled a list of questions for him, mainly around the production of IP and the best first steps to take in terms of taking a product or service to market.

The beginning of my journey.

Posted in Uncategorized on May 15, 2012 by edcook

For those of you reading this and wondering what an “Infopreneur” is. It’s a sort of mash-up between entrepreneur and information, i.e someone who commercialises their ideas. Why does this appeal to me? Well, I’ve always liked being the go-to man for people who want advice, whether the subject is technology, MBA’s or career. So, this gives me the opportunity to package up the ideas I have floating around in my head, expand them, link them together, put a framework around them and then find out who might be interested in hearing them.

In 2010 I completed an MBA from the Melbourne Business School in Australia, part of the University of Melbourne it vies for top spot in the Australian MBA rankings with AGSM in Sydney and sits around the 50 mark in the global Financial Times MBA rankings. I completed the degree part-time whilst working at MBS in the careers department, advising students (mainly full-time ones) on their post-MBA career options. When I graduated in May 2010 I considered a career in management consulting (the default post-MBA career option) but decided to work for a start-up business, looking to establish a talent consulting practice. I initially thought I could satisfy my entrepreneurial urge, but soon realised that working for someone else, whether in a large company or small one meant you had to do things their way rather than chart your own course.

In April 2011 our first child was born, with my wife taking 6 months maternity leave, the start-up would have to wait and a stable income was the first priority. However, whilst I was taking time off work to spend time with our new daughter Amelia I met a few people who were involved with an organisation called “Thought Leaders”. One of them, Sean Spence ran his own consulting firm, during our meeting (which was initially about sailing!) he suggested I look into a course called Million Dollar Expert with the founder of the Thought Leaders concept, Matt Church. He had recently completed it and had found it worthwhile.

Over the next year I worked at a company called Dimension Data, working on their Talent attraction and development strategy. Due to a business restructure an opportunity arose for me to continue to work for them on a part-time basis as an external consultant whilst establishing my own practice. This brings us to the present, March 2012. I completed the core MDE course last week and have started to work out my practice growth strategy. Starting with the best of intentions I have decided to write a weekly blog outlining my progress towards becoming an infopreneur. This is the first explanatory post and I’ll complete another one on Friday with the progress made during the first week, including any doubts, fears etc that I have faced.