Over the last month or so, I've gotten Trainerfly out into people's hands and I've been learning some really interesting lessons. I think it was easy for me to get wrapped up in how I've evolved it as a tool in my business over the last two years and lose perspective on how other people might be trying to add it into their business from scratch, with none of that prior history.
When you integrate a new business tool, you have a question of layers. In other words, if this is how I normally get something done, will the new tool add new layers of work, or remove them? And if it adds more work, is there another benefit that justifies the additional work. I got some strong feedback in both directions.
It was amazingly clarifying for me to see the places where extra layers were not justified. Really specifically, the product is not strong enough right now to replace one-on-one communication if a trainer is using an email/youtube/spreadsheet system to get information to their clients. Why did I think I could compete with mature products from Google and Microsoft? Hahaha.
On the other hand, if the communication issue is about hitting many people at different times with the same basic information, I think I have a winning solution.
The biggest thing that has been bugging me in the last 12-18 months on my own personal teaching front is summed up nicely by saying: "teaching is a product that is consumed as it is produced". A little tear runs down my cheek at the end of every class, because I know that what happened in the last hour is lost forever in the ether.
Ok, so maybe that's a little dramatic, but it bothers me that there's not a better way to preserve the moment, and from a business point of view, earn more money from it. Can you image a furniture maker who crafts single-use chairs? As soon as someone stands up, the chair disappears?
I'm starting to see a solution to this problem, though. It's not going to be hooking up 15 different cameras around the school and recording every single thing that happens. Instead, I'm starting the process of extracting key ingredients from class, and transforming them into a touchstones that students can come back to again and again to further their practice outside of that elusive produce-and-consume teaching moment. There's a lot more to say about this strategy, and I'm really excited about refining those tools. They will look really different than a traditional class -- you have to trade the interactive spontaneity of a good class, for structures that create reproduceable learning and practice moments for students.Â I think I know what that means....stay tuned!
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