I was meandering around Barnes and Noble the other day looking for a book that might hold all the answers to the questions that keep popping up in my work life. I scanned the titles of the section in which I was browsing...
Awakening the Entrepreneur Within: How Ordinary People Can Create Extraordinary Companies
How to Make Millions with Your Ideas: An Entrepreneur's Guide
How to License Your Million Dollar Idea: Everything You Need To Know To Turn a Simple Idea into a Million Dollar Payday
Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In
I was looking for ideas and answers. I was looking for inspiration and guidance. I was hoping to find a book that would help me to help my clients succeed better and faster. I haven't really talked about it here, but my new little business, The Rafters Group, is starting to really grow. The Rafters Group, like rafters under a roof, help support a peak, reach for the sky, and help companies reach their potential.
Today marks the advent of my first ever estimated quarterly taxes payment (which had me a bit freaked, truth be told, NOT a math person). I now have four solid clients, a few subcontracting employees and feel like I have found the perfect balance between relaxed work hours and decent pay. Hooray!
The clent I am currently most excited about, and this does change on an almost daily basis, is an inventor. He has invented a process for treating wood that impregnates a design or logo into the wood grain. It's really neat! And, after years of selling services and paper contracts, it's very reassuring to be out there selling something that is a cutting edge idea, aesthically pleasing and tangible, has real application in the world, and is made of real wood.
Here is the general overview presentation I recently prepared to take this idea to various markets. I created this presentation using my cousin's new company, Sliderocket's software.
Now, comes your role in all this. About a year ago, I read a definition of a term called "crowdsourcing" on Wikipedia. I "dogeared it" (aka bookmarked it) for future use. Well, this dog is having its day. Here is what crowdsourcing is:
Crowdsourcing is a neologism for the act of taking a task traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people, in the form of an open call. For example, the public may be invited to develop a new technology, carry out a design task, refine an algorithm or help capture, systematize or analyze large amounts of data.
I am looking to you, my daily-average-of-28-readers, to help us brainstorm other applications for this wood process. Any "out-of-the-box" ideas are welcomed. Merely leave your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts and ideas!