Back from speaking at Ken McCarthy’s The System Seminar and…

The System SeminarNow that I’m back in my office, I can be honest here with you, dear reader. When I was invited to speak at Ken McCarthy’s internet marketing and business event The System ’06, talking about blogging, I was a bit leery. Twenty-five years of being in the research / publishing / consulting side of things has made me both reticent about making money online and about those folk who have figured out how to make money online. My expectation was that the presenters would be selling like mad and that actual useful information from their presentations would be minimal. I mean, everyone wants to sell their stuff, right? So, yeah, I was very curious how it would turn out spending a weekend in Chicago with hundreds of attendees and two dozen world-class internet marketing speakers.
I am delighted to say that I was completely wrong in my expectations and while most everyone who presented offered programs at the end so interested participants could learn more and gain deeper expertise, the presentations themselves were generally quite valuable and very informative.

I was also really pleased at the reception people had to my own presentation on business and business blogging: when I decided to spend time talking about “business 101” and how to recognize when you’re earning enough and should start balancing your work and life, I figured I’d be branded as the “anti-speaker” and people would walk out thinking “just tell me how to make more money” 🙂
Quite to the contrary, I am overwhelmed by the embarrassingly glowing plaudits I received from both attendees and other faculty members. That by itself affirms to me the value of Ken’s event: attendees are not only interested in learning how to be more successful with their online businesses, but they have a goal, and it’s not to make zillions of dollars, but to finance the lifestyles that they seek. What a great thing, and what a surprise to me!
And as for me, I have a nice long to-do list inspired by the other faculty members and attendees, and a huge stack of cards from people with whom I want to follow up with as soon as I can pry my kids off my leg. Really, the quality of the attendees was great, and I also know that I’ve gained at least three or four great friends from the weekend too, perhaps the best end result of all.
One phrase for you to think about, something that Ken repeated a couple of times during the weekend:

Imperfect action is always better than perfect inaction

It’s a bit cliché and trite, but be honest, don’t you spend a lot of time trying to make things perfect instead of just pushing them into the marketplace to see what happens?
All in all, a highly memorable and splendid event and one that makes me think that maybe this Internet Marketing stuff isn’t quite as bad as I thought it was… 🙂
It’ll be a long time before Ken does another one, but you should check out The System Blog so you’ll know what’s coming up and while you’re there, spend a few minutes reading the testimonials from other attendees and faculty.

7 comments on “Back from speaking at Ken McCarthy’s The System Seminar and…

  1. “…they have a goal, and it’s not to make zillions of dollars, but to finance the lifestyles that they seek. What a great thing, and what a surprise to me!”
    Working to finance a lifestyle sounds alot like “working to pay the bills”, and that isn’t all that exciting. Why are so few trying to find/create passion and enthusiasm for their work?

  2. Hi Dave,
    So nice to meet you. I am so pleased to read your comments on the seminar. I am also glad we all embarrassed you with our accolades. ; ) Do you still reckon we came to win a new ipod? Please have more faith next time * * * Anyway, I will be in touch, especially since you have a new ‘little follower’/’apprentice’/’fan’/’admirer’/’pupil’ or whatever you’d like to call me.
    I have already passed on the question: ‘Do you want to be a ‘game player’ or a ‘value bringer’. It will continue to make an impact.
    All my best to you and speak to you soon.
    Kelly Muldoon

  3. Osman, it’s very interesting that you read what I wrote and interpreted it that way. I can assure you that I am not, and the people I met are not “working to pay the bills”, but are trying to figure out what I refer to as “right livelihood”, doing work that is personally fulfilling, of value to a market or community AND profitable. Get all three of those at the same time and life is going to be good.
    Thanks for your note too, Kelly. Really glad to have met you at Ken’s event too! In terms of terminology, let’s agree on “friend” and go from there… 🙂

  4. About your “Imperfect action is always better than perfect inaction” advice –
    Dulux paint used to run TV ads when I was a kid with a tagline that went, “if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing with Dulux” (or something like that).
    My adaptation has always been, “if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing badly”.

  5. Hi Dave,
    Glad to hear you made it back home safely from the trip. It was such a pleasure to meet you and listen to you speak. You really got me thinking deeper about balance, which is what I have been struggling with anyway. I know I want to make a living online, but I also don’t want to just throw “stuff” up on the proverbial internet wall and see what sticks. I want to also add value to the web. Like you said, I think there is too much digital pollution, I don’t need to add to it!
    To echo Kelly’s comment, I was impacted by your information.
    Anyway, thanks again, and I hope we can stay in touch. I will definitely look you up if I can make down to the Ozarks in July!
    Take care.

  6. Dear Dave,
    I was at the System Seminar last weekend as a new person to the world of internet marketing. Unfortunately, I did not attend your seminar but did order a copy of it. I am starting a blog and have an important/urgent question about blogs that I would like for you to answer, so if you could tell me the most direct way to reach with u with this question, I would appreciate it. I will also try you on your ask Dave website. Thank you.
    Richard Nahem

  7. Glad to see you enjoyed Ken’s System Seminar. As you become more familiar with “The System” you’ll discover he teaches how to make money doing what you love to do as the basis for making money.
    In other words, improving your life can be rewarding financially also. And the system teaches the tools to make it happen. Sorry I missed the conference though. – Chuck

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