On May 18, 120 people 45+ attended the 2017 Boom Conference to identify how they can earn more income using what they already know. Through the expert workshops and engaging panel presentations, attendees left with high expectations, armed with a truckload of useful tools, strategies and tactics. But unlike other conferences, the Roadmap for a Successful Conference, created by TKC Incorporated, led participants in a process to focus the lessons learn into personal, actionable steps, thus ensuring success.
Here are some of the most important conference take aways for persons who are unemployed and under-employed.
- “It’s impossible to live 45+ years without having something of value to offer in the marketplace,” Angela Heath repeated her mantra to the audience several times. “Your last employer purchased your talents and skills, so if you can’t find a job, sell those same talents and skills on your own!”
- Yes, you can offer your skills, talents, hobbies and expertise to the market. However, not all money making ideas are valid — meaning not all ideas will generate a profit. During the Market Validation session, participants explored a six-part process to validate their concepts without wasting a lot of time, effort or money. In summary: research your concept, create a minimally-viable product, test it, revise it, sell it, and scale it. The biggest insight was to sell your concept first before you completely build it out.
- People you know, especially family and friends, may not be the best judges of whether your business concept is a go. Remember, the concept is not valid until the check clears the bank. In other words, getting sales is proof that you have designed a potentially viable money-making concept.
- Networking is a skill everyone needs. Whether you are looking for a traditional job, exploring temporary contract work, or starting a business, networking is how most opportunities in the marketplace present themselves. Yes, despite your decades of valuable experience, who you know is often still more important than what you know.
- Don’t have money to start a business? Who said you need money to make money; that’s not always true. Bartering and online gig work may be your answer. Bartering is an age old concept that still works today. Find someone with the skills you need to start your business but you can’t afford to pay for. Offer them a talent that you have in exchange. Both parties win. You may also want to check out some online gig work platforms such as www.upwork.com and www.freelancer.com. You can bid on jobs and pay for the connection after you make money.
- Sell people what they want right now. Once you know what you want to offer to the market place, find the people who are already looking for what you have to sell. Talk to them; sell to them. That’s why you see plumbers lurking around the plumbing aisle at hardware stores. Look for your customers online and off line. Go where they are.
- Don’t start from scratch. The best leads are behind you. Go back to previous work places and connect with the people who really liked you and thought your work was awesome. Let them know you are looking for a job and in the meantime, you are looking for contract work or you are starting a business. Often they will offer useful suggestions and make some connections for you.
- Finally, make a definite ask. Never ask a question that can be answered yes or no. Frame your “ask” so people have to give some real thought to their response. Instead of saying, “Can you use my help?” say “How can I help you?” Instead of saying, “Do you know of someone who is looking for my product/service?” say “Who do you know that needs my product/service?”
The bottom line is – you can earn income on your own. In fact, you can make money while you continue to look for a job. Your options are limitless. Let me show you how. Start by exploring how your talent, skills and passions can help you earn income on your own.
Angela Heath is an award winning keynote speaker/trainer and author who specializes in all things baby boomers. She helps companies engage with, sell to and service the 50+ demographic and helps boomers become entrepreneurs.