Entrepreneurial Gene

For the last 4 years, I’ve been living and breathing the Lean Startup culture, meeting folks through 8150.co and a vast array of other places. Getting stuff done and selling services through platforms like Fiverr, Mechanical Turk, Upwork. Then I go on another Habitat for Humanity build (It has been awhile, love it). Meet a bunch of great, fellow Americans, making a difference in one family’s lives. We built the house, mission accomplished!

But I look at the family budget. I get to know Tabs, the father of the family, suffering from Diabetes, can’t do the traditional work of a man his age in the village. He has English skills, has a fairly modern Android phone. This guy could do Fiverr! My fellow travelers have no idea what I’m talking about; they don’t know what Fiverr is, can’t see what I see. So I must reach out to my entrepreneurial friends and colleagues. Please give my GoFundMe Campaign a look!

We need:

  • Social Media Love, Likes, and Shares
  • Help Tabs find great service offerings on Fiverr and help marketing them
  • Still, need a few contributions to implement the full plan

I’m also kicking my consulting practice up a notch. Starting to reach out more through LinkedIn. I share a bit of my 30-year experience working with outsourcing teams here in the article: Vendor Assessment with the Joel Test.

Be Brave!

— Andrew Halls

Platform Conference – Trip Report

Platform Conference – Trip Report

I traveled down the hill to attend Michael Hyatt’s Platform Conference at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs. It was 48 hours of intensive focus on how to use the Internet and Social Media to connect with people, moving them from leads to members of your community and then on to customers and then raving Fans.

What is your Platform?

Your platform is a the foundation of generating attention in a noisy world. In the old days, you could stand on a small hill or a wooden stage to be heard. That was your platform.

In the 20th century it got a little more complicated. You had to have a radio or television show, a newspaper or magazine column, a best-selling book, or perhaps celebrity status.

But suddenly, almost overnight, everything changed. With the advent of social media EVERYONE NOW HAS ACCESS to a virtual microphone and everyone is connected to everyone else.

As a result, today’s platforms are built of:

  • Contacts
  • Prospects
  • Customers
  • Followers
  • Fans

The Speakers

The conference was single-track, big stage, big screens and about 200 attendees, with plenty of opportunity to discuss and network.

Michael Hyatt – The Platform Framework

Key Point: Your Email List of people that have heard your message and opted in, is the key to your success.

5 steps to Success with your Platform

  1. Start with Wow – deliverer excellences
  2. Ship It, always prepare to launch
  3. Accept responsibility for the outcome
  4. Set specific goals
  5. Assemble your crew


Casey Graham – Stop Dabbling, Start Dominating

Key Point: Most ventures fail because you get distracted and stop too soon.

Follow the A-B-C’s each and every day, staying laser focused.

Attract – Build – Convert

Attract Traffic How Many People Visit Your Site Today?

Build Mailing List How Many People Joined Your Email List Today?

Convert How Much Money Did You Make Today?


Ken Davis – Speaking With Impact

Key Point: No matter what your platform speciality is … include speaking as part of your platform building repertoire.

  1. Passion
  2. Purpose
  3. Preparation
  4. Confidence


Cliff Ravenscraft – Podcasting, Be a Needle in a Smaller Haystack

Key Point: There are more then 500 Million Blogs. Their are only 250,000 active podcasts on iTunes.

Cliff’s Free Tutorial will get you started: http://LearnHowToPodcast.com.


Crystal Paine – Founder of MoneySavingMom.com

Key Point: Taking a love for finding value and saving money and turning it into a Million Dollar Enterprise.

The Three Lies that Are Stopping you:

  1. I don’t know where to start.
  2. I don’t have time.
  3. I’m not good enough.

Stop Collecting Information and go get started by applying what you already know!


Amy Porterfield – Facebook Marketing

Key Point: You can’t build a business (convert) on Facebook. But it is a great platform to bring traffic to your site.

  1. Irresistible Offer
  2. Landing Page that Captures Emails
  3. Promote with Facebook Ads

Facebook Likes and Fans Build Community and Social Proof, You need emails to make money.


Ray Edwards – Connect Through Your Words

Key point: You must join the conversation that is already going on in your reader’s mind.

  1. Connect
  2. Content – Solve a Problem and they Will Buy
  3. Use a Framework
  4. Captivate with Powerful Stories
  5. Commit to improving


Pat Flynn – 1000 Raving Fans

Key point: Deliver magical moments to delight your audience moving them into a connected community and then raving fans.

“If you want to change somebody’s life, start by changing their day first”

  1. Causal Audience
  2. Active Audience
  3. Connected Community
  4. Raving Fans


Stu McLaren – More Money Gives You the Foundation to do More

  1. Work Less
    • Automate
    • Delegate
    • Delete
  2. Make More Money
    • More Customers
    • Bigger Transactions
    • Same People Buy More
  3. Love Life



It was a great conference. I learned heaps, but more importantly it gave me great examples to follow and motivated me to get even more focus on my own platform effort:  SnoCoach.com

Plugging the Leaks in the Valley’s Economic Bucket

For a moment lets think of the economic system of the Valley as a big bucket and dollars pour into it as our natural resources and existing infrastructure attracts visitors and the dollars they spend.   Then we can look at the health of our economy as the level of dollars in the bucket.   Traditional economic development works on pouring more into the bucket through growth.   Natural Capitalism provides a model where we can look at slowing the outflows of money from the bucket.

How does money flow out of the county?  

One important example of money flowing out of the county is expenditure on energy.  As a community, we can slow this outflow by giving priority to improving the energy efficiency and self-reliance of our local economy.  We can do this on a big scale by implementing more aggressive renewable energy programs. We can do it on a small scale by redefining hitch-hiking and making it safe through social media with groups like Vail to Denver Rides.

Only focusing on growth has several huge downsides.   Growth only is reliant on outside factors that we have little control over.  When the national economy tanks again, a growth only approach does not improve the resilience of our local economy.   Un-bridaled growth means more lifts, more destination hotels, more employees housing, more slope-side McMansions.  The very reasons why we came to the valley are stressed and devalued by this growth.  Growth only is the definition of cancer, it is not sustainable over the long term, not sustainable for our grandchildren’s grandchildren.

As a community we can plug the leaks in our economic bucket by:

  • Reduce energy consumption through conservation and installation of renewable energy capacity.
  • Promote local ownership, keeping profits in the local economy.
  • Build Markets and Payment Systems that favor local businesses, then source products from those businesses.
  • Implement tax and wage policies that value natural inputs into the economic system as much as capital movement and profits have traditionally enjoyed.
  • Create economic opportunity to retain our youth that we spend so much money educating

With this “plugging the leaks” perspective, I’ve launched a series of Facebook Groups.  These groups replicate success other communities have had in strengthening their economic fabric by building locally focused markets through communities that Facebook so easily engenders.    Eagle Valley Buy Sell Trade Share FreeEagle Valley Housing, and Eagle Valley Talent Pool.   To find locally sourced products and service, resolve housing challenges and find local talent respectively.

You can follow along by “liking” the page Eagle Valley Buy Sell Trade Projects.  The first posting on the page is a link to a great video that explains the leaky bucket economic model and natural capitalism approach much better than I have here.