Freelancer News

Putting in the work always creates an asset. Always.

 wrote this 19 days ago in General

When I was in college I did something dumb. My mistake? Speeding. It was expensive. But it taught me one of the greatest lessons to business building I’ve ever learned. 

It’s a principle that I believe anyone can use to make thousands of dollars, sometimes within weeks of putting it into action. 

Why such a bold claim? 

Because I've seen it, first hand... repeatedly. Best of all, it works if you have no money, are in pandemic, whatever. It cost me 30+ hours of my life to learn this principle but I’m going to give it to you here now for free.

Shortly after my aforementioned speeding ticket, I found myself in a van with 3 ladies of the night, a couple drug dealers, and 2 undefined petty criminals.

We were on our way to a work site. I had made a deal with the court to work off my speeding ticket in lieu of payment.

So for the next 30 hours I’d be doing manual labor for the state of California.

It actually wasn’t too bad. We arrived on the scene and were given shovels, bags, hard hats and other equipment. After the equipment was divvied up, the CAL-TRANS guy in charge yelled out:

“Come along everyone, we’re going to a special spot today.”

So we made the trek out about a mile from the freeway, until we got to this big swamp-ish puddle.

"Okay. We need to form a chain. We need two people to go down in the front and start pulling debris."

I was wearing some old Nikes. I didn’t want to go down into the mud. No one else wanted to either. Everyone just looked around.

“Come on! We’re not leaving until we clear this mud out.”

For several minutes everyone avoided making eye content with him. Then I did something crazy. I volunteered. I went down into the uncomfortable mud and ruined my old Nikes. For the next several hours I was pulling muddy old debris out of a swamp. It sucked.

Me and a cowboy from Georgia were the only ones willing to do the work that day. Everyone else just looked at us like we were crazy and went back about their day avoiding work.

And we felt crazy too.

We weren’t getting paid, everyone got the same credit for the day, so what did we do all the extra work for?

It gets worse. The mud-covered ride back was deflating, knowing that the next day we'd have to wake up and do it all over again.

But then something surprising happened. 

The next morning, as the guy started calling out names and assigning people to vans, he suddenly paused.

“Robert you and [Georgia cowboy] can take the day off since you were in the mud all day yesterday.”

Our hard work paid off. And boy, if you think you feel good when a Zoom meeting gets canceled, imagine what 5 hours of manual labor getting canceled feels like!

I drove home in euphoria. Scream singing songs with all my windows down. (But not speeding.) 

And this is the lesson:

Putting in the work always creates an asset. Always.

You just have to be willing to:
  1. Actually do the work upfront
  2. Look and recognize the asset that has been created
  3. Use that asset to your advantage
This sounds a little vague. So let’s look at some real scenarios. Let’s say you have an idea for an app. You could:
  • Talk about this idea endlessly.
  • Or spend 10 hours creating a landing page.
But what if that landing page never sees the light of day?

Creating it still gives you an asset.
It’s something you can show to people to recruit a partner. It’s something you can use to collect email addresses and test the market. It's something that gives you a deeper understanding of the problem and marketing it. And there’s about 50 other ways you can use something like a landing page as a strategic asset that gives you leverage you didn't have before.

That’s why this is so important. Almost no one is willing to do the work upfront.

People tend to only work on things where they can clearly see the pay off in advanced. A paying client for example.

Everyday, this is only getting more true. Today it’s too easy to kill 10 hours pleasurably binging Netflix, scrolling Instagram, etc. 99% of people won’t choose to get a little uncomfortable and do the work. 

So let’s do one more example. Say you wanted to land a $20,000 client.

What could you do? You could:
Now it may not seem like applying to 10 projects is a guaranteed investment. You might not land any right?

However, as we learned above, doing the work always creates an asset.

For example:

Even if you applied to 10 projects and won zero of them, you could take your 10 proposals and create a template that lets you send out future proposals out in 1/10th the time.

That 10x's the amount of opportunities you have at your disposal. (Note: this is a key lesson we walk-through step by step in Endless Clients.) And it's something that wasn’t possible before you did the work. Before you created an asset.

This is what building a business is all about. Doing the work upfront that will allow you to separate your time from your income in the future.

That’s your biggest advantage. So today I invite you to use it. 

I'd love to help. Mulling over doing some hard work? Post below and share what it is, and let's brainstorm some potential ways you can create an asset by doing the work. 

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