This is going to be an unusual update since I won’t be sharing any tactics and strategies with you today. Instead, this is a personal appeal. I want to hear what YOU think.
See, something’s been bothering me a lot lately. It has to do with transparency.
As many of you know, I am a freelance writer and marketer. I’ve been freelancing online since 2003, when I was 20 years old, initially as an effort to support myself through college. It didn’t become a regular, stable thing until 2004.
Since 2013, and a little bit before that, I started helping out other Filipino freelancers. At first, informal yung attempts - someone would hear from a friend of a friend that I was freelancing online and they wanted to learn how to do it. But by March 2013 my mentoring efforts became a paid 6-week course, Pinoy500 PRO. Since then I’ve relaunched the course a couple of times, and also created a new course on negotiation (Negotiation Toolkit), which I’ve also launched twice.
The tricky thing about being a mentor or sharing knowledge with others is that the mentor should be held accountable for the advice he or she gives. Madali lang maghanap ng information online - whether it’s about freelancing, starting your own business, how to diagnose your medical symptoms, or how to train your dog. For each topic you want to learn, there are hundreds of web pages out there giving you answers.
Pero papaano natin malalaman kung reliable ba itong information na ito? Do they come from specialists who have studied that field for years? Do these specialists have practical real-world experience? For example, there are many ebooks or courses out there that teach you how to train your dog - but how many of the people who offer these courses have actually trained dogs? How many dogs have they trained? How many of those trained dogs succeeded with the training?
So that’s what’s been bothering me, especially since I don’t really like talking about myself or my personal life and experiences. As someone who is selling information and training to other people - information that’s supposed to work and help them achieve concrete goals - how much of what I teach do I actually apply? How much of it has worked for other people? How can you know that I’m really walking the walk and not just talking theory? Has freelancing made me as happy or as free as they said it would?
That’s what I want to learn from you. How transparent do you want me to be?
If I were to send you a monthly update of the details of my freelance work, or even my courses, what do you want included in those updates? For example:
- What facts about my work, clients, or courses should I mention?
- What doubts do you have about my character or my work as a professional, and how can I help you confirm or clear up those doubts?
- Which details of my professional and personal life would be useful to you?
Let me know. Because if I can find a good balance between keeping my personal privacy (for safety reasons, of course) and giving you full transparency, I want to do that for you.
There are two ways of letting me know the level of transparency you want from me. 1) Hit “reply” to this update if you’re reading it via email, 2) Leave a comment on this blog post.
I look forward to hearing from you.