Learning by doing

Learning by doing

Aug 19, 2021 08:40 AM
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Nov 4, 2021 10:43 AM
Dominic Zijlstra
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He He built a digital outreach agency over the past year which now generates $20k per month.
20 min. listen
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I talk with superlearner Devesh about extreme learning by doing. He built a digital outreach agency over the past year which now generates $20k per month.
Find out more about Superlearning at https://superlearners.traverse.link/.
Video preview
Learning by doing beats theory, any time. For any skill that can be learned by doing, learn just as much as you need right now, then practice, fail, get better and repeat.
You should stop consuming and start doing.
I'm talking today with Devesh who is an absolute master of learning by doing. Over the past year, he learned how to build an online agency business and is now making 20 K revenue per month.
Watch the interview to learn how he did it.
Hello, and welcome to the third episode in my interview series, super learning professionals. Today I'm joined by Devesh. Devesh lives in India and over the past year, he built a very impressive digital outreach company which reached 20 K dollars monthly recurring revenue.
And he is now also building a course about how to set up such an agency. And he is joining me on that course creator fellowship. So welcome. Devesh
Hey, Dom, it's nice to be here. I'm super excited to be on your YouTube channel and for this interview, let's go.
Thank you, Devesh. You built a very successful agency over the past year. So I imagine you had to learn a lot of new things. So maybe you can tell me about the things that you had to learn and how you approach that.
Yeah. So in the beginning, in June last year, I found this small little community called money Twitter, and I saw all these big ass screenshots of people posting like 50 K 60 K 70 K in one day.
And I was like, I also want to make so much money. So I started following those people and then I found out that, all right, so this is what these people are doing. Some people were doing e-comm, some people were selling courses on Gumroad. So that's how it started.
And then I was DM-ing people and asking them that Yo, I am this 18-year-old kid. Can you teach me how you are doing what you are doing? So many people didn't reply, but then a few people told me that you should start with building an audience online and then also learn the basics of copywriting.
So I started a new Twitter account and then I was also reading some copywriting books and learning copywriting.
Nice. I've seen some of those Twitter accounts myself after you told me about them. And I can see there's a lot of information out there and a lot of different ways to make a lot of money.
So how did you choose what, what to learn and what not to learn? How did you arrive at the conclusion that a digital outreach company was the right path for you?
Yeah, so I was scrolling Twitter and I was just reading, everything, reading, all the treads, bookmarking, everything, taking notes.
I was watching YouTube videos and buying courses, but there was so much information that I was overwhelmed. Bro, what should I do? What's suitable for me. So there are four or five, things people can do to make money online. So one it's freelancing, then we have SaaS.
Then we have agency, e-comm stores and then small stuff, like print on demand and affiliate marketing. I didn't like that. So I figured out that, I will start with freelancing and then transform it into an agency.
You said you were taking a lot of notes to learn all of this. Did you have a particular process for taking notes and then learn how to do first freelancing and after that start an agency?
At that time I was using Google keep notes. I didn't know anything about notion or Roam. So I was using just Google keep, and I was taking screenshots and copy pasting, whatever I liked into that.
Nice. So you have a lot of processes in your current business. Do you use notion or something else to organize that?
Yeah, I use notion for almost everything and I'm quite excited that notion is launching the public API. So that will be helpful a lot.
Okay. So can you give some examples of the things that you keep track of in notion?
I have multiple things in Notion. There are documentations SOP processes and all the videos and run-throughs of every step in the agency. So whenever someone new in my team joins, they can just go through that process and understand step by step that, all right, I have to do this first.
And these are the five steps I need to take to do this. And then at the end of that, there is maybe a video run through or some resources of good articles, blog posts so that the person can actually understand what is supposed to be done and how it is supposed to be done.
So they don't do any mistakes and I can work on other stuff rather than teaching people small, small minute things every day.
Nice. So you have a team, they have to read all those docs. How do you motivate and inspire them to learn all of this stuff?
Do you provide them any guidance around that?
Yeah. During the kickoff call, I do a screen share, run through all the notion systems and SOP. At the end of last year, I didn't have anything. I was a complete noob in all the systems and processes, but then I figured out that if I want to scale my agency and get out of the business, then I need to have everything documented and I need to work less on the business. So that's how I started. And then for my team members, they are usually on performance basis paid right now. So they are actually incentivized from that only, and I don't need to push them to do stuff.
Yeah. If you have the right incentives, they will do the right thing. So you learnt notion in a very short amount of time. Did you use any course for that, or how did you do that?
I didn't use any course to learn notion and I was just using it. So first I learned about notion and then I was like, this is too complex. I can't use it. But then slowly I was just writing stuff in notion, I didn't know anything about tags, databases, and all the complex stuff. I was just using it as a Google Doc , but then slowly I figured out that there are linked database tags , templates and all that stuff. It was all me exploring notion and then doing it. I still don't know if I know everything about notion, but I know him.
Nice. Yes. I think you should always know just enough to work with for what you need at the moment. So maybe a bit more about your background because you are 18 now and you study computer science. How is your studies going? Have you been as efficient in learning for your studies as you are for your business, or has it been completely different?
So I'm studying computer science. I'm in first year of university. And to be honest, I have not been paying much attention to university for the past four or five months, but it's like online classes are going, so I'm just going with it.
When building your business, what has been the biggest challenge in terms of learning? was it being overwhelmed in the beginning or was there a certain point in time where you got stuck?
The biggest challenge for me was detaching myself from the money.
In the beginning, I was like, if I'm making X amount of money, then I don't want to hire people and give them some portion of it, because that way my margins would be reduced and I'll make less money. But slowly I figured out that if I want to make more money then I have to hire people, and that is the only way to scale my agency.
So that's what I learned. And then the struggles were mostly around building systems and automations for my agency so that I could use software to do the monotonous work.
So now you are building a course or you already launched the course actually, which is doing very well, which is teaching other people how to build an agency.
What have you used to be able to teach people how to do this? Your own experiences or any other methods for them to learn and get started?
Yeah, I am in process of launching my course and I'm doing a slow rollout of it and I'm using podia for the course platform. I'm just using videos, text, and even including some of my notion templates and processes to make it easier for the students to understand what's going on and how they can follow it. So I'm using a lot of scripts, templates and worksheets along with the normal text and videos.
How do you make sure that the students actually learn and take action and build a successful agency?
So we'll be doing a separate post-purchase email workflow where after a specific amount of days, they'll be getting emails to see how much they are covering how much they are going to the course content, how much action they are taking and how much of it they are applying. And then I can actually see in my coach platform dashboard how much each student is going through the course, how much content they have covered so I can email them or message them directly if they are struggling with something.
Okay. you are a very practical learner. You have learned the things that make you very successful in a short amount of time. What do you think is needed most in this field of building companies online to make sure that other people can benefit from all the knowledge that's out there.
So the best advice I can give to everyone is to actually take action, stop consuming content, and start doing something concrete. if you want to get clients, you need to send cold emails or do outreach to get clients. If you want to grow an audience online, you need to make content tweet or make YouTube videos, but you actually need to stop taking more courses and apply what you already know.
And like you said, I'm a practical learner, so you will learn things as you go instead of just sitting in a room and studying theory.
great advice. Thank you for the interview devesh and one more question: who should I interview next?
You can reach out to maybe Ty Frankl or the Email wizard and see if they are willing to do an interview with you.
Yeah. That sounds great, I've seen their Twitter and they're very inspiring as well. So thank you devesh
Awesome. Good to chat with you. Talk to you later.

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