164 FS Teaching and Learning Courses with Breanne Dyck

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Check out RailsClips and RemoteConfs!


01:14 - Breanne Dyck Introduction

02:13 - Transitioning: Contracting => Teaching Courses

05:59 - Structuring Content

  • Deep vs Wide Business Model

10:19 - Where do you start?

13:05 - Getting Results

24:15 - Setting People Up to Succeed

  • Pilots, Alpha and Beta Phases
  • Outcomes and Objectives

33:57 - Should I charge for pilots? (Pricing)

35:39 - Experimentation > Textbook/Traditional Learning

43:22 - Selecting Content For Your Course

52:50 - Getting and Keeping People Interested in Your Courses Through Completion

The Art of Outbound Lead Generation by Blair Enns (Eric)Is Positioning Professional Services Different Than Products? Al Ries Explains (Eric)Badass: Making Users Awesome by Kathy Sierra (Eric)remoteconfs.com (Chuck) God (Chuck) Jesus Christ (Chuck)The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Chuck)Brain Rules (Updated and Expanded): 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School by John Medina (Breanne)Brilliance by Design: Creating Learning Experiences That Connect, Inspire, and Engage Kindle Edition by Vicki Halsey (Breanne)Quiet Power Strategy by Tara Gentile (Breanne)Your Perfect Participant: Unlock What Buyers Want & Need From You by Breanne Dyck (Breanne)


**[This episode is sponsored by Hired.com. Hire.com is offering a new freelancing and contracting offering. They have multiple companies that will provide you with contract opportunities. They cover all the tracking, reporting and billing for you, they handle all the collections and prefund your paycheck, they offer legal and accounting and tax support, and they’ll give you a $2,000 when you’ve been on a contract for 90 days. But with this link, they’ll double it to $4,000 instead. Go sign up at Hired.com/freelancersshow]****CHUCK: Hey everybody and welcome to episode 164 of the Freelancers’ Show. This week on our panel we have Eric Davis. ERIC: Hello. CHUCK:**I'm Charles Max Wood from DevChat.tv. A couple of quick announcements here; the first one is that I just released Rails clips, so if you're looking for those Ruby on Rails videos, you can go check them out at railsclips.com. I also put together the Remote Conference videos. I’m putting them out on RSS feeds, so you can go check that out remoteconfs.com. And finally, if you know someone who is struggling to get started with testing their Ruby on Rails applications, then please put them in touch with me. My email is chuck@devchat.tv. We also have a special guest this week, and that’s Breanne Dyck. You want to introduce yourself? [Crosstalk]**BREANNE: It’s ok. I've pretty much respond to “Hey you’ or any variation thereof. It’s actually why my website name – it’s just mynameisbreanne.com and I left the last name out entirely. CHUCK:**Gotcha. [Chuckles]**BREANNE: Anyway, yeah sure, I’d love to introduce myself. My name is Breanne, and the short version of what I do is I work with folks who have a lot of big ideas that they want to share with the world. Maybe they're tired of working one-on-one with clients, or they just – they really have some exciting stuff that they want to get out into the world, and I help them to do that by applying the principles of adult learning. So whether that’s applying adult learning principles to your marketing or to courses that you want to create or whatever that looks like, I help you to grow your business and have a bigger impact on your audience by looking at how we learn and how that impacts what you're doing in the world. CHUCK: Very interesting. It seems like – we were introduced by Noah Gibbs, and I guess he put together a course on the playing Rails applications. And so he put me in touch with you as somebody that we should talk to, and this seems to be the way that I see a lot of freelancers go: that they contracted with clients for a long time, and then they get tired of it, or they start thinking, “Gee, it’d sure be nice to have some recurring revenue, so what do I do? Well, I’ll put together a course because I’m an expert in whatever it is that I do.” BREANNE:**Yeah. It’s interesting because if you go back about 5 years ago or so, the big thing was e-books, right? And that was the first – what do you call it: passive income – I hate that term; we can get into that later if we want [chuckles], but it went to e-books, and then it went to – oh, you couldn’t call it an e-book; you had to call it a guide. And then, a guide wasn’t good enough. You started starting adding videos and stuff on. If you're going to add videos, you might as well turn them into lessons. And if you're turning them into lessons, you might as well create a course. And so, over the last 5 years or so, we’ve seen this entire transition happen to now – you're exactly right; it seems to be the thing to do, and for a lot of people, it’s, “How am I going to grow my business? I’m tired of doing one-on-one. I can only do so much one-on-one. I have two choices: I can either build an agency or try and change my business model,” and for a lot of people, what changing the business model looks like is teaching what you know.**CHUCK: Yeah. We’re kind of in the same boat here. Eric has a pretty good list for freelancers, so if you go sign up for his mailing list, you get a lot of that information. He also curates a newsletter that gives you a bunch of links for freelancing, and so I don’t know, Eric, if you thought about doing a course or something like that on freelancing, but maybe we can use that for our example as we talk through some of the stuff. ERIC: Yeah. And I’ve seen similar stuff as Breanne said. I've done the books. I started a bit earlier with my Ruby focus books, and then I have two that are in the freelancing area. I did a short course, which is basically phone conference call-type idea to see if I fit well and see if I actually enjoyed it, but like everyone – not everyone – most people jump with “Oh, we need to do an e-book. Now we had videos, course, all that,” just as ways to flush out the product and have a larger offering. The other side of it is sometimes – I hear it a lot and it’s like “Oh, you know, I’d love to buy your book, but I don’t read,” or “I’d love to buy your course, but I don’t like video and I’d rather read’ and stuff like that. So I know some people that do courses have multiple modes to it where you could read it and you can listen to it; you can watch it as a video. BREANNE: So many of freelancers and people who traditionally were doing development work and used to be that you would get your work through referrals and personal connections and even advertising, but as anyone here’s trying to hop in today’s freelance world knows, content marketing is such a huge part of things. So what ends up happening is you start generating all these content from your content marketing, whether that’s a blog or you're doing podcasting or you're just guesting on other people’s podcast or whatever, is you're generating all these content, and it seems like it’s a really natural step. What if just package that up? I’m putting out all these knowledge anyways; isn't there a way for me to be seen some more obvious return from it rather than just hoping that someday it lands me a client? ERIC: Right. In my first two books, one on Ruby and one on Redmine, they actually – one started as 82 blog posts that I basically put together, made it pretty, got edited, and put into a PDF as a book, and the second one was the same thing, but it was a mailing list that I sent out for about a year or so. CHUCK: How do you structure these things then? So let’s say that I have all these content. Eric’s talked about it. I have other content in other areas. How do I take that information and start packaging it up so that people can learn from me or have a product that teaches them what they want to know? ERIC: Why would you even want to? It’s not the best way to do it. BREANNE: Yeah, exactly. That’s the first question, right? It’s really easy to say, “Oh, I should create a course, or I should create an e-book, or I should create something like that because –.” CHUCK: Of course I should; I’m a genius. BREANNE: Yeah. Or it’s because of what everyone else is doing, right? It’s like “Well, you know, Nathan Berry made the hundreds of thousands of dollars by teaching people how to design an iOS apps. I know how to do that kind of thing; maybe I could make hundreds of thousands of dollars.” But Eric’s point is exactly right. The first question is: is that even what you want to be doing, and even what you should be doing for your business and for your lifestyle? One of the things that one of my mentors, Tara Gentile, talks about is the difference between having a deep business model and a wide business model. And most businesses fit into one of those two categories because of the preference of the person running the business. So a deep business model is where you want to work on projects that go really deep with an individual you want to really get your hands dirty and make magic happen, right? The wide business model is when you want to be the rockstar on the stage with thousands of fans screaming your name, and you don’t necessarily want to go deep and have a deep impact on everyone; rather, you want to reach as many people as possible. And if you try and have a deep business model, but you're trying to create a course, you're going to run into a fundamental problem because what you want is to go deep, and you're never going to be able to go as deep in a course or a program as you can working one-on-one. If you're a developer and you just love tinkering and getting your hands dirty and getting in the code, if you are one of those people that lives and breathes algorithms and optimization and big notations – if that’s you, then building a course is not necessarily going to satisfy that itch because you like going deep. On the flipside, if you're tired of working with people one-on-one, if you feel like you're not actually being satisfied, if you want to have a bigger reach and a bigger impact where you want to see your name in light sometimes, then it makes sense to start thinking about “How can I take what I know and start turning it into something that I can package and sell as a course or a program or product or whatever form that’s going to take?” ERIC: Yeah. And I think knowing yourself like the big step zero – do you want fame or do you not want fame? Do you want to work one-on-one or do you want to have just as big a group of people you work with or time freedom or location freedom – what do you want to get out of it besides extra money in the bank or whatever? BREANNE: Yeah. A lot of what it comes down to me as what relationship do I want to have with my customers. Do I want to be their partner in crime that is there with them every step of the way and helps them solve problems they didn’t even know they had, or do I want to be more of a facilitator that’s helping them on their own learning journey? I was having a discussion with someone on Face-book, and they were talking about how I’d made some comment about how it’s really important to device yourself when you're doing customer research. The situation was I was doing customer research for a client of mine and an individual came back and said, “Well, why don’t you just teach them how to do it?” and I said, “Well, that’s because that’s not the relationship I want with this client and that’s not the relationship this client wants from me.” They don’t want to learn how to do it. They just want someone to do it for them. And so a big part of it is what relationship do you want to have with the people you're working with. Do you want to teach them to be self-sufficient, or do you want the people who are too busy to figure that out and they just want to hand it over to someone that they could trust to do it and do it well? For me, I fall more into the “I want to actually do stuff for the people,” which is kind of ironic because I’m not the type of person who wants to go and have hundreds of thousands of fans selling out a thousand seats in a course. I’ll do a small course, but my personal vice is I want to see the results that come from partnering with someone in a really close relationship. CHUCK: Yeah, that makes sense. I’m leaning in the other way where I like the interaction with people and I like having one-on-one conversations, but I really want to make it as big an impact as I can. BREANNE: Yeah. And that goes to your question before. If you decide that’s want you want to do, where do you start? And I really like what you said, which was to figure what is it that people want to learn from you. So the number one mistake that people make when they start to jump in to developing a course or a product or an e-book or whatever the form of your teaching – I’m just going to call it a course for the rest of this interview so I don’t have to keep expounding on it – but a number one mistake that people make when they're jumping into course development is they're focusing on “What is it that I want to teach?” which is actually the wrong question to ask. The right question to ask is “What do people want to learn from me? What do they want to be able to learn to do?” and then you backtrack and say, “Okay, what do I know that can help them achieve that end?” And that’s true for a couple of reasons. Number one, if you want to sell something, you better make sure it’s something people want to buy. And people want to buy solutions to problems or things that help them get closer to the goals. They want to buy something that they want to learn. But it actually matters from a learning perspective, too. If you are interested in getting results for your buyers, which I hope you are because results leads to happy customers which leads to more money down the road, if you're interested in getting results, there's actually been research done that shows that if you go into developing a course with a learner-centered mindset, so with the question in your mind of “What do people want to learn to do from this experience,” that actually gets into your subconscious and it changes the way you approach developing your course such that your students or buyers or customers actually get better results at the end just by changing the question at the start from “What do I want to teach’ to “What do they want to learn.” CHUC0K: That’s really kind of interesting because you're focusing on the results. BREANNE: Yeah. One of my favorite definitions of learning is you know that learning has happened when people are able to choose a different behavior than they would have previously. A lot of times, we focus on learning as like a head thing – it’s all cerebral; it happens in the gray matter, but learning doesn’t really matter and there's no evidence that it’s actually happened if it doesn’t result in a behavior change or if it doesn’t result in opportunity for you to change your behavior. So if you're trying to teach someone Rails programming and they don’t end up knowing how to even put together a really basic Rails app, what good – have they actually learned anything? Probably not. One of my friends says the kiss of death for any of her online courses that she teaches is she knows she hasn’t done her job if someone says that course was really interesting. It’s an interesting course didn’t get results. CHUCK: Right. So is there a way to ensure that you are getting results or to check if you're getting results? BREANNE: Yeah, absolutely. So if the first question is “What do people want to learn from me?” then the next question is “What do I know that they need in order to be able to get there?” And so basically, the way I frame this when I’m working with clients is I frame it in terms of goals and outcomes. Goals are the things that your customers want to get. They're the results that your customers are looking for. A really easy example is, say you're putting together a course on losing weight. The goals of the customer might be to look good in a swimsuit on the beach, or might be to fit into the pair of jeans that they haven’t worn for a couple of years, or it might be to be able to play with my kids and not be out of breath by the end of it. Those would be customer goals. Then what your job is, as the educator or the trainer, is to ask yourself, “What do I, as the expert, know they need to be able to do? What skills do they need to gain in order to achieve their goals?” So the skills might be they need to have breakfast every day, or maybe they need to get in the habit of going grocery shopping and only buying healthy foods that are easy to prepare, or maybe they need to gain the skill of basic cooking, or whatever it is that you, as the expert, know that they need to be able to do in order to achieve those goals. Then you bring it together. And my principle is that courses, in general, should be focused on taking action because that’s how we learn. We learn when we’re doing. And so if you can get people to just do the things they're supposed to be doing, whether that’s writing code or cooking a meal or whatever it is depending on what they need to be able to do, the more you can get them doing those things in a guided environment where you're helping them step-by-step, the more likely it is that they will see the results. Not only in the long run, but they’ll see immediate results, which then makes them feel confident and motivated to continue learning so they actually complete the process rather than just getting into the first module and throwing up their hands and say, “I've no idea what’s going on. I’m just going to turn around and walk back out.” ERIC: Yeah. And I think that helps you define the course because if you're – you can even narrow it down and say you want to be able to play with your kids. It’s weight loss, but that’s the thing you really care about. You could narrow it down and be like, “Okay, here's the stuff we’re going to do,” and here’s a baby goal that you can get that’s like – maybe you can chase after your kid for 10 feet while you're playing where you're like you have a base and you play tag kind of thing. It’s so small they can get results with that. They can have some success with that, and that’s going to be a positive feedback loop to get them through the hardest of maybe playing a whole baseball game or a whole football game or something like that. BREANNE: Yeah, exactly. The other thing that comes into this question of results is you have to define what results look like, so exactly what you were just saying, Eric. For some people, it might just be enough to play tag for five minutes. That might be enough of a result. In education, there's a concept called the levels of mastery, and basically, it’s the idea between you can do deep learning, or you can do surface learning. So let’s take a programming example since I think that will resonate with a lot of the folks who are listening to this. You can do surface learning with programming, right? That’s the people who know how to Google a particular question and they find themselves on stack overflow, and they know just enough to copy the top-rated answer of code, and put it in their own code and maybe change the variable name, and all of a sudden, poof, it works magic, right? That’s surface learning. That’s being able to look at something and apply a formula, or use a technique, or basically, someone’s going to give you a model and you're going to repeat it with maybe a few tweaks. You have to be able to do that level before you can move to higher levels of learning – to deeper learning. So deeper learning might look like, oh, can you actually analyze that snippet of code? Can you actually figure out what is that function call doing? What is that variable name actually representing? Why is it that variable type and not another? Can you figure out what all the component pieces are? Then can you evaluate the next level after and analyzing as evaluate. Can you look at what’s working well or not working? Maybe this is the point where you decide ‘should I be using a while loop or a do-while loop? Should I be nesting my loop? Should I be using a function, or should I – there's just be a method’ or whatever in the language you're dealing with is evaluating, making those judgment calls and saying “What’s actually the right thing to do? What’s the best way to achieve my aim?” Not just “What are the pieces,” but “How can I put them together optimally.” And then finally, the highest level of learning is when you're able to create something new that hasn’t existed before. That’s when you're able to sit down with a blank screen in your code editor or IDE of choice, there's nothing there and you can start coding from scratch by putting together all of the stuff that you’ve synthesized enough and create something new that’s never existed before. And what we do then when we’re trying to teach someone is we actually want to work them up those levels of mastery. So you want to give them the foundation of there just maybe a need to know and understand some concepts. Then they need to be able to apply those concepts to a real life situation. But once they’ve applied it, then they need to be able to analyze it, break it down, see what’s going on to evaluate it, make decisions, and then they can finally be at the highest level of mastery, which is to be able to create something brand new that’s never existed before. ERIC: Right. And I’ll probably reference it later, but there's a book I read called Badass. It’s basically around making users awesome; how to make user to be application good at what they're doing, but actually, the underlying message around it was how to teach and how to get your users to actually better at it, and Kathy Sierra, she goes into it and actually talks about how there's different skills you have that you can do like when you sit down and do, like you're talking about taking a snippet of code and maybe even understanding it, but there's also unconscious skills that as you get better and better skills that took a lot of brain effort, took a lot of thinking about, and move from your conscious, your unconscious, and then it becomes your habit, and you just actually just do them. And I think that plays a big role, too, because it – basically, the idea is offloads a lot of the cognitive processing to stuff that – basically, unlimited resource at that point and so you can, again, focus on the aspects that do take more energy to do. BREANNE: Yeah. There's a spectrum of competence that every learner goes through, which is go from – at the very beginning, you're unconscious of just how incompetent you are. Otherwise, you don’t know what you don’t know. And you start to learn a little bit, and you become conscious of just how incompetent you are. You know that there's a whole lot you don’t know. And it proceeds all the way up to the final levels where you are unconsciously competent, where you know so much you don’t even realize how much you know because it’s become so ingrained in you. And that’s actually – that relates to the curse of expertise, which is something that software developers and even UX designers really can stumble up against because – I love that example of teaching a user how to use a new piece of software. When you're an expert in that software, there's studies that say that it show that it’s actually impossible for you to estimate how long it will take someone who’s a novice or a new to the software to figure it out. There's literally – you can’t device yourself, you can’t guess, you can’t figure out where they're going to struggle without actually just testing it because you are on conscious of just how competent you are. It’s second nature to you. Of course that’s what this button does and you are so – you become, basically, ignorant of the fact that someone else doesn’t know it. ERIC: Right. And like another example is I've taken some lessons from that book to apply to my own stuff, and I actually can’t ride a bicycle. I just never picked it up, so I’m actually taking how to ride a bike as an adult and deconstructing that skill and talking to people who have ridden for 20, 30 years, and they're telling me all these things to do and I’m like, “I can’t even manage one-tenth of 1% of what you told me to do because you're so far along,” and they can’t even – one guy, he rides hundreds of miles. He can’t even grasp I can’t turn and balance at the same time. And he is like, “Well, you got to figure that out,” and I was like, “How do I figure that out?” And so it’s really hard to go back and figure out what information I need, what chunks I need to build up to even get the most basic skill level, and they can’t say, “Oh, I can just take a 6-week class and I’m good to go.” It might be years before I get to a beginner level of competence with it. BREANNE: Yeah. It’s that 80/20 rule, right? What’s the 20% that actually is going to make 80% the difference? Experts, actually, are terrible at identifying that because the 20% that experts tend to focus on is the high-end optimization – how do you gear up, or how do you shift gears on your bike – when, really, what matters to a novice, the 20% that’s gets 80% of the results are a novice is like “How do I put my feet on the pedal the right way so that I don’t fall over before I even start pedaling?” CHUCK:**Yeah, and it’s funny because on the other end of it, I've been teaching my kids to ride their bikes and we waited a little while and so, of course, I’m teaching my 9-year old and my 8-year old to ride bikes, and it’s the same thing. All the advice I have is “Well, keep trying [chuckles]. Pedal harder. If you go faster, it’s easier to stay up,” but that’s about all I can tell them. ‘Turn the wheel before you ran into something,” but how to explain to them how to balance the bike or make it around the corner – I don’t even know. “You turn the wheel and you make it around the corner.”**BREANNE: It reminds me of the video – it went viral probably about a month or so ago, and it was the guy who switched the handle bars on his bike. He’s an engineer, and he basically made it that if you turn the handle bars left, the wheel would turn to the right, and him trying to figure out how to ride this bike that was backwards and it demonstrated the extent to which balancing and what-not is so subconscious and you don’t even think about it; you're manipulating the handle bar to keep your balance all the time, and he was doing this, I think, in Amsterdam where everyone rides a bike and people are looking at this crazy foreigner who can’t ride a bike. But your brain just gets wired with the skills, and it’s a process of habituation that you have to habituate to it because otherwise, you're not going to be able to progress to higher levels of skills or higher orders of mastery, like talking and chewing or walking – what is a walking chewing gum or walking and talking; everyone can do it, but if you can’t walk, or if you can’t talk – you have to master the individual pieces first before you're going to be able to put it together. CHUCK: So then, how do we set our customers or our readers or our audience up to succeed? BREANNE: It’s really tricky because – I’m going to tell a little bit of the story behind the curse of expertise that I mentioned earlier. It started off with people – we've researched as we’re trying to tell people “We wanted you to figure out how to retrieve a voicemail from a cellphone,” and this was in 1999. It was 5 years, I think, before the iPhone even became a thing, so we’re talking flip phones, candy bar phones, and they asked people who knew how to use cellphones to try and explain it to people who didn’t know how to use cellphones. And they tried technique after technique, they would say to the experts ‘remember when you were first learning,” or they would say, “break it down into pieces. What are all the steps you have to take?” And it didn’t matter what technique they tried, the experts could not predict where, how, and when the novices would fail. So this is a problem, right? If we want to teach someone to do something, if you just take that study on its face, it sounds like it’s hopeless. There's nothing we can do. Fortunately, that’s not entirely true. What I actually work with my clients on is a model that newer software development and actually quite closely, and that you do some initial planning and development, and you basically do an architecture because you know what the results need to be; you know where you're going; you can break it down into pieces; you have a pretty good understanding of what your minimum viable product needs to look like. It’s a lot of ideas borrowed from Lean and Agile methods. What’s the result and what are the steps that I think are going to take someone to get there? You plan that out, you architect out your solution, you basically build a framework, and then you go into an alpha test or a pilot, as I call it. A lot of people in course development, they actually call it running a beta, but running a beta isn't the same as running an alpha as anyone who’s worked on a big software projects knows because in an alpha, you're expecting things to go wrong. You're expecting to have to tear things down and rebuilt them. You're expecting that you’ve made some bad assumptions. And so in a pilot, what you're doing is you're basically taking a group of people, whether it’s one client or a small group of clients through your best guess as to how to get them to their end goals, but you're being adaptive and adjusting on the fly, and it becomes a very iterative, and you're almost co-creating. You're the facilitator that’s helping them on their own learning journey. Like when you're helping your kids learn to ride the bike, you're there to give advice and give them tips and stuff, but they're doing as much, if not more, of the work as you are. Once you’ve done that in an alpha phase or a first pilot, then you can move into a beta phase where you're not going to be making wholesale structural changes unless something really big comes up. You're more looking for the bugs – the things that didn’t work as intended, the things that maybe need to be adjusted, but not completely torn out or replaced. I usually – I call that a second pilot – I usually recommend people you run two pilots of a course before you go and do a big public launch, which is your gold master version of your software before you release it out into the wild as a final version because it takes at least two to three iterations to be able to test out what’s working and not working enough with real people because you can’t predict, as an expert, where people are going to fail. You have to test it and find out in reality what’s working and what’s not working. CHUCK: Yeah, that makes total sense. So let’s say that I have a group of people that want to learn how to freelance – and going back to our course idea – and I get an idea of where they're going to struggle, I talk to a lot of people, and so I’m like “Okay, I think I know what I’m going to do here for this course. I think I know how I want to outline it. I think I know which examples are going to have the most impact, how I can get them off the ground and running,” and so I go ahead and I do this pilot. I find a few people who are willing to listen to me talk about freelancing or seriously interested in freelancing, how do I start arranging things? What are the things I’m looking for that indicate that I’m doing a good job or not a good job? BREANNE:**Well, this goes back to that idea of results. So when you're – let’s take a step back and let’s look at how you're even going to figure out what to include in this program or this course or not. What are you going to include and what are you going to leave out because one of the biggest problems that courses have is they include way too much information; that’s why people don’t finish them because it gets – it’s like drinking from a fire hose: you're getting completely overwhelmed with too much information. So we talked before about having – understanding what are your customers’ goals and what are the things that you know they need in order to achieve those goals, and you call them outcomes. And outcome is actually a verb statement. It’s actually just a sentence that is the description of what they will be able to do that demonstrates they’ve achieved that outcome. So for freelancing, it might be that they are able to close a negotiation with a perspective client and get the deal kind of thing, or it might be that they need to be able to create whatever the application is according to the client’s scope, or they need to be able to write a proposal, or whatever the things are – and I say choose five to seven of those things, and make sure that they're verb statements so that they're actually observable things that an outsider can say objectively, “Can this person successfully achieve this outcome or not?” That’s really important because your student, your customer, is not going to be able to judge their own success by virtue over the fact that they're a customer other than “Can they check off the box or not?” It needs to be really black and white success or fail. Can you do this or can you not? If you can come up – so you come up with about five to seven those high-level outcomes, high-level topics, those are what you're going to cover in your courses, or those are the 7-ish things that you know someone needs to be able to do to achieve their goals. When you break it down into sub-steps or what are the mini-outcomes or the objectives that they need to achieve on their way to complete [inaudible]those outcomes. And those are also verb statements. So in order to be able to write a proposal, they need to be able to interview the client. They need to be able to compute a profitable pricing structure or whatever. Again, all those are verb statements, right? It’s all action-based. Once you’ve got that outlined, it actually becomes really easy to figure out if people are getting it or not because you have a really clear litmus test. Can they do the things that they're supposed to be able to do at this point? Can they interview a prospect? If not, you know you have more work to do in that area. The other thing that focusing on the action allows you to do – we talked about the 80/20 rule before; there's actually an 80/20 rule for curriculum. The 80/20 rule of curriculum says that learners should spend 80% of their time doing and only 20% of their time consuming content. This is really good news for course creators because it means you have way less content to create.**CHUCK: I was going to say. BREANNE: Yeah. It’s amazing, right? I was working with a client and she said after working with me, she cut her slides by two-thirds and spent a quarter as much time preparing her course materials and her students got better results at the end because learning comes from doing. So if you're focused on “What do people need to be able to do,” then your content is what information do they need in order to be able to do that thing, then it becomes really easy to evaluate. Can they do that thing that they're supposed to? Yes or no? If yes, success; if not, then you know exactly where to look and say “Why can’t they do that thing? What wasn’t clear or what do they misunderstand, or where did they go off the rails?” And you can adjust based on actual ability or lack of ability to achieve the things that they – that they and you want them to achieve. ERIC: What I was going to say is that mirrors the more one-on-one coaching or consulting relationship. If you're the teacher, the trainer, you tell them to do something; if they can’t do it, they get back to you saying “I can’t do this because of X,” you solve that problem, you give them whatever material, course, help, whatever it is – educate them so they can get over that hurdle. Once they get over that hurdle, they continue on and if they don’t have problems, they don’t even come back to you. You just skip over it. BREANNE: Exactly. There's so many parallels between coaching when done right and educating or teaching when done right because in both of those cases, what's important is transformation. People are achieving as a result. The nice thing, actually, what a lot of people find works really well is for that first pilot, that alpha phase I was talking about, is to literally do it as a premium coaching, maybe 2 or 3 people. Even if you're doing it one-on-one or in a small group, and do exactly that process, outline them, take it through it; if they struggle, then you know what to put back in. Then for your second pilot, your beta test, then what you can do is have some pre – more pre-packaged materials. You can take all that stuff and you just share it off the cuff, you can package it together and give it to people and see “Oh, what now – what questions emerge. What things still aren’t clear?” And then, by the time you get to the third iteration, you’ve got your materials all packaged up. You can open it up to a wider audience, and you know that – basically, you’ve predicted the trouble spots, not because you're some kind of super genius, but because you’ve seen the common failure points. CHUCK: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. Now, I want to talk about the pilots a little bit. So you do you charge for those pilots? BREANNE: Normally, yes. Some people don’t. I tend to say yes because of the psychology of what happens when you charge people money for something. They take it more seriously, right? In fact, for some people, you can actually earn some situations depending on who you're selling to and how you're positioning it, and in some cases, you can actually charge more for a pilot experience than you do for the end result because through that pilot experience, they're getting more of your one-on-one attention, it’s customized to their needs, so on and so forth. A perfect example of that is Ramit Sethi of iwillteachyoutoberich.com. He’s got a couple of his higher end programs that he actually first developed as a weekend seminar, and it was many thousands of dollars to attend to this live in-person seminar, get your questions asked in a video crew that was filming it. And he took that video from that live event, repackaged it, added a few supplements depending on what obviously needed adjusting, but repackaged it, and that became a program. And in that case, the course version, the final version, was at a much lower per-seat cost than the in-person version. Now that’s something that works for Ramit. It probably – it doesn’t really won’t work for anyone; you have to know your audience. Very often, what works as – if you're looking at a pricing structure is you have to be profitable, so you have to figure out how it fits into your business model, what’s your profitability point, how do the numbers actually work. And then, once you know what your final price point is, then you can usually do maybe two-thirds of the price for a second pilot, and half of the final price for a final pilot. But pricing, in general, is largely arbitrary. On these things, a lot of people ask me pricing questions about their courses. I tell them, “as long as you're profitable, pricing is largely arbitrary because it’s a combination of pricing and positioning and who your prospects are that’s going to determine whether it sells or not. CHUCK: So it’s funny – I want to go back to the doing as opposed to listening or teaching. I did a training in Atlanta for a couple of company out there, and by far, the thing that made the difference there was when we actually – when I turned them loose on some code and said, “Okay, right, write this TDD,” and then helped them step through some of the things because the first test, they wrote on their own, I got a whole bunch of blank looks like “Where do I even start?” And then, by the second or third one, they were clicking right along. BREANNE: Yeah. Reminds me of a study – I have lots of studies in my back pocket; I like the research – but it reminds me of a study that was done – I think it was in 2012, and they had – this was at a medical school, and they were trying to figure out how do you teach first year med students neuroscience. It’s one of those weeder courses where if you can’t pass first year in neuroscience, you're not going to go on to be a doctor. It’s the one where they weed out most of their people. It’s notoriously difficult. It’s very, very complex. And so, the instructors, the researchers wanted to figure out how can we help people understand, because they were weeding out some otherwise really highly qualified students. It’s just that this was such a complicated subject to be able to master. So they did an experiment where they created a simulation of a brain; it’s like a table with a computer interface, and if you poke to a certain place and you would get to see what part of the brain would light up. So it was about figuring out stimuli, right? If I stimulate this part of the brain, this is the center of the brain that lights up, and so on and so forth. And they broke the students into two groups. One group went and went straight to the simulation. They had no instruction, no guidance; they were just told “Go play around with the simulated brain and see if you can figure out how the brain works just by experimenting.” The second group of students went and did more traditional learning: textbook, lecture, video, “We’re going to explain to you how the brain works based on years and years and years and years of experimentation.” Then they did an evaluation of the two groups of students. The students who did the experimentation performed much higher than the ones who did the textbook or traditional learning. And what they found was that the students who did the experimentation, they were some wrong assumptions that they made; there were some things that they thought they were observing, but they were misinterpreting, but overall, their performance was much higher. They thought, “Okay, that’s really interesting. What happens now if we switch those groups? So the students who were doing experimentation, we’re going to go give them the lecture. And then the ones who did do the lecture first, we’re going to go have them experiment.” So the groups switched. They went off, they did their things, then they did another evaluation. And in the second evaluation, what they found is that the group that started with the textbook and then went to the experiment did not do as well as the people who started with experimenting and then went to the book. So what this study showed is that going and experimenting and figuring things out, practicing them, doing them by hand, even if you do it wrong, doing that before you get formal instruction actually puts you further ahead than if you started with instruction and then went to experiment. What I love was a quote in the paper from one of the students who said – this was one of the students who went and experimented first and then went and learned – the student said, “I wish that I had done it the other way around because I feel like I would’ve been able to make better use of the simulation if I had learned about it first.” But the research says that our gut instincts are wrong. We’re actually better off to experiment first and then learn about it even if it feels more uncomfortable, even if we feel like we don’t know what we’re doing. You'll end up better in the long run if you experiment first. CHUCK: So I got a couple of questions on this, and mainly, it’s – so you can do this to a certain degree with code, but you have to know how to use the tools, you have to know what the APIs are for different things, so I wonder a little bit how do you do this with code where you need a little bit of the context up front? ERIC: Well, you got to remember, This study was done with first year med students. They had some education and some training already, so there's some foundation underneath it that they can use. They weren’t pulled fresh out of high school, too. BREANNE: Yeah. CHUCK: Ah, gotcha. BREANNE: Think about the levels of mastery again. So surface level learning is knowing, understanding, and applying. And then higher level mastery is analyzing, evaluating, and creating. If you actually split those into two different tasks, it becomes easier to see how to get people to it, explore without getting completely lost. So if you're in the lower half, you're teaching people who have never coded before, they need to know the ‘know, understand, apply’. They need to be able to look at pieces of code and mock about with them to figure out what works. So think about that simulation of the brain and what they were doing. They weren’t asking people to reconstruct the brain or to put together a model of the brain. They were saying, “Here’s a brain. If you poke at it, what lights up?” You can do the same thing with code, right? “Here’s a piece of functioning code. What happens if you change this line? What happens if you take this part out? What happens if you–?” I remember when I was learning programming. “What happens if you remove this semicolon?” Right? All of a sudden, your code doesn’t compile. You can have people play around with something to start to understand. You talk about APIs; when you're an existing programmer and you know the fundamentals or programming, how do you learn a new API? You probably don’t sit down and read the documentation. You probably do some searches, find – figure out what you're trying to do, you go and you find the particular API call that you want, look at – you parse the string out, you figure out “What are the variables, what's being returned, how is all – what are my inputs and outputs, how is this all fitting together.” And what you're actually doing by reading the documentation is you're applying the process of poking at something and see what happens. It’s just that you’ve already figured out how to do it. You don’t have to copy the code and delete one variable to see what happens. You can parse that in the documentation because you’ve got the low-level of learning mastered; now, you're applying the high-level of learning. So first thing you can do, like I said, get someone to poke at some existing code; see what happens, what changes. When I've been learning programming, I would’ve been far more happier to understand loops because that’s something that seems to be hard for every beginning programmer to understand is loops. You give me a loop and just ask me how can I make it run 10 times instead of 5 times and let me go play with it; that’s going to stick better than trying to say, “Well, i less than or equal to 10, and this part of this that–,“ right? That just makes more sense. Then, once you’ve got the low-level mastered, then you can go and give people the opportunity to just go and play and create because the level of mastery, the low-level skills, like you said, the basics of programming, they’ll have played around with the tools enough to be able to understand how to use the IDE or to – they’ll be able to recognize some of the basic function calls even if they don’t fully understand, or even if they have misconceptions of what it is that’s going on, they’ll have enough foundation that they can go on to deeper learning and be able to experiment and try to analyze, evaluate, and ultimately, create something new on their own. CHUCK: I want to go back to one of the thing, and this is going way back to the beginning of “What do you do your course, or book, or content on?” You mentioned that you need to find out what your audience wants to learn rather than selecting for “Oh, I know people want to learn how to podcast from Chuck.” It turns out there are few people out there that do, but there are a whole lot more people that want to learn how to write Rails apps, or test Rails apps from Chuck. BREANNE: Yeah. This is something that one of my clients – I'm not sure if you know Marie Poulin of Digital Strategy School. Yeah. So, Marie – when Marie actually came to me and took one of my programs when she was trying to develop Digital Strategy School –and she was in exactly that situation – when she came to me, she was convinced that people would buy a course from her on digital strategy for small business owners. Basically, she thought that she was going to be working with her existing clients – she’s a web designer – is a web designer – she thought she was going to teach digital strategy thinking for small business owners. And she actually started to work through it; “What would be the goals of these people and what would be the things they would want from it?” And as she got into it, she realized that the goals that she was pulling out that she thought “Why would someone want that?” She’d never actually heard anyone say to her. She never actually heard anyone say “Oh, I wish I knew how to think like a digital strategist because then I would grow my traditional offline business” – no one ever said that. And so, really, what she ended up doing is she started paying attention to what people were saying. So in her case, she was in all kinds of Face-book groups with other designers, and what she found was that people were always asking her questions about trying to get advice about how to be a digital strategist; how to stop working on 1,000-dollar websites and start working on 10,000-dollar websites; how to, basically, level up in your business. And it was one of those things – it’s true for her, and it’s been true for customers that I've worked with since then who have had the same realization that the answer, usually, is right in front of you. It just often seems too simple because often, what happens is that it’s something again, curse of expertise, we know it so well, we don’t value it. I have another client who she works with entrepreneurs on financial stuff, and she thought that she was going to be creating a course about how to manage her business finances and stuff. And again, she got into the process and she’s like no one is actually asking these questions. No one actually is trying to solve these problems. Okay, what are they actually asking me?” And what she realized is that people were asking questions about sales. “How do I –?” a smaller part; it’s still part of knowing your business as finances, but it’s like “How do I master my sales? How do I manage the sales process that I’m converting more customers?” And once she realized that that’s the part of this big goal that people actually were asking her questions about, she was able to focus and narrow down and just give people what they were actually already asking about. So really, it’s more about listening. And that’s why it’s not learners-centered mindset. It’s about what are people already asking you for rather than what you think they need to know. What do they want to learn to do, not what you want to teach. Just focusing on turning up your ears, turning up your listening volume will get you much further along the way to creating something that people actually want from you. CHUCK: I love it. It’s awesome. BREANNE: There's one technique that’s useful for that. If you find yourself getting stuck and you're not sure if it’s something people are really asking for or not, let’s take the example of you're hearing people saying that they want to learn how to podcast from you. And that’s a big topic, and there's a technique called the five Whys, and it’s basically people want to learn to podcast from you, why do they want that? And I’m actually going to ask you: why do people want to learn to podcast from you? CHUCK: Why do they want to learn from me or why do they want to learn to podcast? BREANNE: You can answer either – let’s go with – answer both, and then we’ll figure out which one of inquiry to dive deeper into. CHUCK: Ok. So they want to learn to podcast from me because I have 5 podcasts that get between 15,000 and 250,000 downloads every month. They want to learn to podcast because they either feel like they want to contribute back to the community, so they want to be part of the conversation, or in a lot of cases, they want to build a brand so that they can then sell products or services. BREANNE: Alright. So I can tell you right away which one of those answers feels juicier to me, and that’s the second one. It’s just which one feels like there's more to it than that. So what you would do – that’s the first why. Now, we’re going to ask ‘Why’ a second time. So, why – and you answered it, you cheated a little bit and said ‘because’ – you said that the reason why they want to learn to podcast is because they wanted to grow their business. CHUCK: Right. BREANNE: Why do they want to grow their business? That’s the next ‘why’. CHUCK: Because they want to make more money. BREANNE: Ok. Why do they want to make more money? CHUCK: Because they have some lifestyle that they want to reach. BREANNE: Right. And you could keep going – usually between three and five times of asking “Why,” you get to something; that’s the basic one to meet. That’s the basic final outcome that people are looking for. That then informs that’s the goal, actually, of the course. That’s what they actually want from you. And that may or may not be through podcasting that they want to get it; it’s just that they think podcasting is the way for them to get to their ultimate goal, which is this lifestyle. Then, it’s up to you, as the expert, to decide “Is teaching them how to podcast actually the best way for them to achieve that lifestyle goal, or is there a different or better way for me to help them achieve that lifestyle goal?” And that’s what I want to build the course around. That’s the blending of what they think they want and what you, as the expert, know they need. CHUCK: Yeah. But the thing is that I think that depends on the person. BREANNE:**It does to an extent, but people aren’t just different from each other as they’d like to think. It’s the idea of you only need a thousand true fans kind of thing to make a thriving business. You don’t need to be able to sell, lived a lifestyle you want to live and podcasting will help you do that to everyone in the world. You only need to find the few dozen or hundred or however many you want to reach. You only need to find the people with whom that resonates. So you don’t need to tell everyone you can have a lifestyle you want by podcasting; you only need to find the right people who do resonate with that. That’s why we test, right? We test to find out “Is there a market there for that,” but by doing those 5 Whys, and 5 Whys are actually something you can do in communications with your audience. You don’t want to just pepper them with why questions all the time [chuckles]. I was coming back to you why why why why why; you can rephrase the question. “Tell me more about what – that’s really interesting, what would that look like for you?” You could ask the questions in different ways, but your audience will tell you, and then it’s just pattern recognition. By the time – in Don’t Make Me Think, the UX book by Steve Krug, I think is the author – in Don’t Make Me Think, he says you can usually find 80 or 90% of the errors in UX design by testing with 5 people. It does not take a lot of people to find patterns. So if you go and if you find people who are engaged in your audience, and you can ask them the 5 Whys series, you’ll probably find the pattern that’s the truth for your audience.**CHUCK: I don’t know if I have any other questions. Do you, Eric, have anything to add? ERIC: Not really. The idea – using the 5 Whys and drilling into that as something I learned a lot over the past few years, and it works really good. Find out not what people say the problem that they have is, but what's behind the problem, and basically keep digging, and you're right – usually, 80-90% of the people have the same problem or the same problems; a small variant, that doesn’t matter at all. And it’s the idea that we’re all not unique snowflakes. So I know that works and it’s worked really good for me, both in consulting and in building products and courses and training. BREANNE: Yeah. It never ceases to amaze me how – just like people aren’t really a special snowflakes; nothing that we really do when it comes to business or life is all that different. When I was introducing myself, I made the comment that I apply the principles of adult learning to courses, I apply it to marketing; I apply it to biz dev and biz growth and team development and all of that. We talked about applying it to interface design, and helping users to figure out how to use software. We talked about how the same thing applies to market research or to managing client expectations. Education isn't just teaching and learning. It’s the process of figuring out how to go through your day-to-day life and how to help people go through their day-to-day life. So, for everyone who’s listening, even if you don’t think you're going to create a course or that’s want you want to do, the lessons here still apply because you're always learning and you're always helping other people to learn and that’s – if I could leave people with one idea, that would probably be it. CHUCK: Nice. So one other question that came into my head while you were talking was I don’t know how many books or courses I've bought that I started them and I went off and did lesson number 1, so they do what you said, and they introduce the topic and they're like “Okay, go forth and code.” So I go forth and code, and then I get busy and I never come back to the book or the course. Or a lot of people buy the course because they think it’ll get them to where they want to go, and they don’t even start it. So how do you get around that? BREANNE:**There's a couple of different things. The first thing is to set realistic expectations for yourself. So there's a study done of MOOCs - the Massive Open Online Course that like Stanford and [inaudible] and all those guys are doing; they look at these courses and basically did proportions of how many people actually completed the courses. And it’s interesting because in my own experiences with clients, a paid courses have basically the same breakdown. So as a course creator, you can expect that probably about 15%, 10-15% of people who enroll in your program won’t do anything with it. You can also expect that about 70% are what are called passive participants. So passive participants are those people who – they have a specific goal in mind, they have something that they really want to achieve, and they’ll do the parts of the course that they can see directly relate to or directly contribute to them reaching that goal, but they won’t do everything because they're just in it for whatever interest them. And then there's the top 15-ish% are the ones that are the active participants who will actually complete, they’ll do everything, they’ll be on every call, they’ll do every assignment, they’ll read every page, they’ll watch every video, et cetera. What's important to realize, as a course creator, is that those percentages, while you can shift them, and you certainly want to try and get more active participants and you want to have less of those lurkers, those percentages are not all about you. They are as much, if not more, about the person buying the course or taking the course as they are about you. If someone comes in without the intention to actually complete, that’s not your fault. That’s their idea. So what the second part of that is how do you set people up to actually complete? How can you help people who want to complete to actually do that? And this is where the power of habit and the power of motivation come into play. I’m a big fan of Charles Duhigg’s book The Power of Habits, and also of BJ Fogg’s research on motivation and habit. And what both of those researchers have said is that motivation and habit are critical in terms of how they play into each other. Motivation isn’t constant and it’s not something we can manufacture in ourselves or in others. So what you want to do is you capitalize on the time when motivation is high, and when motivation is high – for example, when someone’s first buys a course, they're really motivated, they're really excited – you want to take that opportunity to get them to do something hard; something hard: number one, they bought. Making a purchasing decision is hard, so their motivation is going to drop a little bit because their willpower’s going to drop a little bit because it’s hard, but they still are highly motivated. So what you can do then is have them clot out what they're going to do to ensure that they finish the rest of the course. So in The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg gives the example of a study with people who are going through rehab. They were trying to rehab an injury, and the people who were most successful in completing the rehab were the people who before it started outlined and anticipated all the things that could potentially get in their way – all the things that could prevent them from being successful in doing their rehab. They could get sick, or they could have family come to visit, or they could just not feel like it, or whatever. And for each of those things that they could identify that would get in their way, they would then go and essentially create a plan for how they would overcome that when things are hard, when they're not motivated. And they would use the power of habit to help them do that. So BJ Fogg talks about the idea of tiny habits – the smallest thing you can do to help you keep going. Instead of trying to build a habit to floss all your teeth, you build a habit to floss one tooth. Instead of trying to build a habit to run for a mile every day, build a habit to put on your running shoes in the morning as soon as you get out of bed. When you, as an instructor or as a provider of these instructional materials, know those things, you can direct people to do them. So if you know that people often get sidelined because they put the e-book away and then they never look at it again, you can give them instruction right off the bat to put it in their calendar or to – whatever it is. You want to get really fancy; you could get an auto-responder series going that reminds them in two days, “Hey, you bought this thing. You should go back to it.” But you can take advantage of the fact that people’s motivation is high at the front and get them to plan for how they will successfully complete and achieve their goals because you're just helping them get what they want, right? So your job is to help people do what’s best for them, and then it’s their job to pick up the slack and to ultimately get across the finish line, So you want to set people up for success by helping them do the things they need to do to be successful, but you can only take so much personal responsibility for that because you can’t force – you can take a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink.**CHUCK: Right. I thought it was interesting that you said that about 15% are going to be the highly motivated people that finish, and that just reminds me of the Pareto Principle – the 80/20 rule, and it’s so funny how many things come out of that, but yeah. So 20% of the people who buy are going to be the people that are going to make it pay off. BREANNE: Yeah. They’ll do everything you ask. What's interesting is that in that 70% – that passive participant, the majority, they are still people you will still get great testimonials out of that group because they will achieve the result they want to achieve; it just might be that they don’t do everything because they don’t need to. That’s the other thing when you're developing a course is you – it’s not like coaching because you're not just dealing with one person and helping them meet their needs. So what you're doing when you're creating a course is you're trying to meet the needs of the majority of the people that you're serving, and it’s up to the individuals to choose what they're going to get out of it and what value they get from it. But they can still have huge amounts of results even if they don’t finish the whole thing. CHUCK: So what you're telling me is that if I – let’s say that I put together a course on testing Rails, and the first few chapters are videos or whatever are about basic testing principles, so it’s “Here’s how write you test. Here’s how you run the test.” And the people who have gotten that far, they’ll just skip ahead to chapter 4 where it starts talking about whatever it is they're struggling with. BREANNE: Yeah. Again, it’s about what can they do, right? For the people – it goes the other way, too. So the people who are just “I just want to learn how to do a basic test. I've never done unit testing or whatever happens to the – I've heard unit testing; I don’t even know what it means.” They might just do those first couple of lessons; it’s like, “Oh hey, I did a unit test. I’m good now. I’m going to go back to my job or my life and maybe I’ll come back to it later, but I've gotten what I need from it.” And the people who are more advanced are going to – you stay still – depending on how you structure your course; they may still need to go through that process because you might be teaching a certain form of testing that they may not be less familiar with, or you're going to be using a certain library to help them do it, or whatever, but they're going to be more itched in the later part. So what's important for those people is to always connect what you're doing now to what's yet to come because if they don’t see how what you're doing now – it feels too easy or doesn’t feel relevant – you want to get them a quick win so they can do something, but you also want to show them how it’s going to connect to the bigger goals and the bigger end results so that they stick with you even if they're not there. If it’s not – if it’s feeling as something they’ve done before, you need to make it really clear and really obvious for them that this is where we’re going and this is how we’re getting you there. And so, if your primary concern is A, B, C, pay special attention to lesson 5 because we’re going to dig in deep to that. I've done that in my small group programs. I take 10 people so it’s not a big thing for me to have 15-minute goal-setting calls for everyone that comes in. You can also just do that in a pilot or a couple of pilots. I just ask people what their goals are and say, “Okay, you really want to pay attention to module 5. You really want to pay attention, and you are going to love lesson 4 because we’re going to go deep into that, and here’s how it’s going to look.” It sets people up for anticipations that if they're going through some more foundational stuff and they're feeling like “I don’t see how this relates,” you’ve made that connection for them. They don’t have to be feeling like “I don’t see how this is relevant to me’ or whatever. CHUCK:Awesome. I can sit here and talk to you all day. [chuckles]BREANNE: I think we said that the last time we chatted. CHUCK: Yeah. I think we did. Alright, let’s go ahead and do the picks then. Eric, what are your picks? ERIC:Ok. So, I got two blog posts and then a book. One is The Art of Outbound Lead Generation. It’s on the Win Without Pitching blog. It’s interesting. I've been – you hear about content marketing a lot, inbound marketing, but I would see a lot more stuff talking about outbound marketing or outreach or just going out and making sales, and I've actually been advising people to do that – freelancers and consultants to do that more frequently because it takes a long time to get inbound stuff working. It’s a nice article because it contrasts the two and tells you a little bit about the strengths and weaknesses of each, and how you should really focus on both of them in your business. You shouldn’t just be a one-trick pony with that. The next one – it’s an article, but it’s also a – Philip Morgan has a podcast and so it’s a – not a transcript so much, but kind of a summary transcript. But it basically compares positioning in the old classic 70’s to now, and how it can be applied to professional services. And Philip actually talks – or he talked with Al Ries who actually kind of invented the phrase ‘positioning,” and I think he is Jonathan from the podcast. I think he is Jonathan’s reading to Al’s responses on in the audience, which is really interesting. But it’s good to know some classic stuff from this time 40 years ago still actually applies. It’s tweaked a little bit, but it’s still pretty much the same now. The third one I mentioned earlier – I might have picked it before, but it’s called Badass: Making Users Awesome. It’s a book by Kathy Sierra. This is probably one of the few books that I recommend you get it in paper and not in digital. It’s centered around building products – UI, UX – that sort of idea, but it really completely talks about learning how to get skill – like skill acquisition, all that. I've actually directly taken ideas from this and have taught myself [inaudible] thing that I've struggled with for years. I’m going to be using it to teach myself how to ride a bike, and I’m going to be using it to teach myself a new technology like a large technology library. So it’s really good. It’s really interesting. It’s short. I think if you care about improving yourself or learning, it’s a must-read.CHUCK: Alright. I've got a couple of picks. So my first pick is if you miss JS Remote Conf or Ruby Remote Conf, I've put up an RSS feed and I’m going to start adding the talks to that every week. So the first two talks from JS Remote Conf are on the feed right now. You can find it in iTunes. Just look up remote conferences. You can also go to remoteconfs.com and you'll be able to see the talks as they come out. So like I said, it has the first two talks from JS Remote Conf and the next talk will be out when this comes out, so that would be a Craig Mckeachie, I think, on MV Frameworks. So anyway, if you're interested in JavaScript or Ruby, that’s a great place to go. I also have some ulterior motives with that, and basically, the ulterior motive is that I plan on doing more remote conferences, and so this is – this will help raise the profile of those and give you a chance to get notified when those are coming out. So anyway, go check it out – remoteconfs.com. The other pick that I have – the thing that we are always saying on the show is that picks are things that make your life better and I feel like I have neglected something that has really made my life better, and that is God. So I’m picking God, and he sent his son Jesus to save us, so I’m picking Jesus Christ, as well. If you want to know more about my faith and the way that I approach faith, you can go to lds.org. There's a lot of information there about the LDS Church or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And you can also, if you want, you can get a book of Mormon or how the missionaries come visit you if you want to know more. So go check that out at lds.org. Breanne, what are your picks? BREANNE: I've got a few books for folks to check out. The first one that I'm going to recommend is called Brain Rules by Medina. This one’s got – even if you don’t think you ever want to figure out how to teach or whatever, Brain Rules is amazing. It’s a book that basically blends science with real-world application of how the brain works, how it helps us in our lives, our careers, and in our learning. It’s a phenomenal book, and I highly recommend checking it out. If you do decide that you want to do some online courses or put together an e-book or something like that, another book I recommend is called Brilliance by Design by Halsey. This one’s a really user-friendly introduction to what's called instructional design – that’s the field of developing courses and curriculum, and it’s really focused on that idea of helping people to take action and doing hands-on practice in learning. The third pick that I have for you guys – I mentioned Tara Gentile earlier on this call as one of my business mentors. If you're curious about how to get inside your customer’s head, or how to build your business in a way that’s stands out from all the noise of all the – all the other freelancers and developers out there, her book Quiet Power Strategy is really phenomenal about how figuring out how you can tap into your own – that quiet inner voice that tells you what's right for you rather than being subjected to the noise of the world and getting lost in the muck. So it’s Quiet Power Strategy by Tara Gentile. And finally, if you are really interested in creating online courses, and you want to put training into your business, you can come on over to my site, which is mynameisbreanne.com/ppg, and I have a download for you guys there that’s specifically about how to get into your customers heads and doing that what they want versus what I know they need process that we talked about earlier on the call. Those are my picks. CHUCK: Very cool. Well, thanks for coming. If people want to know more about what you're doing, or if they need help putting something like this together and they want to hire you or get into one of your courses, how do they do that? BREANNE: Best way is to head over to mynameisbreanne.com. You can find all of these social media stuff from there because it’s kind of hard for me – it’s a tongue twister for me to say in audio – on Twitter and Face-book: I’m mnibreanne. But like I said, if you just go to mynameisbreanne.com, you'll find out the goodies there including, if you do /ppg, there's that download. CHUCK: Well, we’ll also put links to all that stuff in the show notes so that you can just –. BREANNE: Awesome. CHUCK: Come and click on it or in your favorite podcast app, you can just tap the link. Well, thanks Breanne. That was awesome. BREANNE: Thank you so much. I had a lot of fun jamming with you guys and geeking out. [This episode is sponsored by MadGlory. You've been building software for a long time and sometimes it gets a little overwhelming. Work piles up, hiring sucks and it's hard to get projects out the door. Check out MadGlory. They're a small shop with experience shipping big products. They're smart, dedicated, will augment your team and work as hard as you do. Find them online at MadGlory.com or on Twitter @MadGlory.]**[Hosting and bandwidth provided by the Blue Box Group. Check them out at BlueBox.net]**[Bandwidth for this segment is provided by CacheFly, the world’s fastest CDN. Deliver your content fast with CacheFly. Visit cachefly.com to learn more]**[Would you like to join a conversation with the Freelancers’ Show panelists and their guests? Wanna support the show? We have a forum that allows you to join the conversation and support the show at the same time. Sign up at freelancersshow.com/forum]

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