An Irishman, German and Scotsman who live in Thailand; an American who lives in Spain, a London born Malaysian-Chinese and a German who lives in Australia all walk into a boardroom in Hong Kong …
…for Perry Marshall’s famous 2 day, ‘4 Man Intensive’.
What is the ‘4 Man Intensive’?
Held over two full days, the 4 Man Intensive is essentially a ‘grilling session’ for 4 business owners and 4 ‘observers’.
Each of the business owners voluntarily place themselves under the ‘hot seat for half a day each where every aspect of their online and offline sales funnel is pulled apart and torn to shreds.
Expertly led by renowned Internet Marketing expert and Adwords guru, Perry Marshall, business owners invariably walk away with strategies, tips and advice that can potentially 2x (if not more) their business.
This was the first time Perry Marshall has held a 4 Man Intensive outside of his hometown Chicago, USA.
4 Man Intensive, Hong Kong, December 2011
Even if we tried, we possibly couldn’t have had a more diverse group of business owners who participated in Hong Kong this year.
This time, the 4 business owners were:
- A German who manufactures electronics in Thailand
- An American who runs both a health & wellness events and info products business from Barcelona
- A Japanese who runs an investing info products business from Tokyo, and
- Two Aussies who ship cars to and from Australia.
The 4 Observers were:
- A German who is doing internet marketing for an Australian Not-For-Profit organisation
- An Irishman, based in Thailand, and ex-‘4 Man Intensive’ participant
- A Scotsman, based in Thailand, who is advisor to International Aid & Development agencies, and
- Yours truly, a London born Asian Australian, Principal Consultant of Google Adwords Certified Partner, Intention.al.
What I’ve learned from Perry Marshall
Its not everyday that I choose to spend thousands of dollars to fly half way around the world to work on somebody else’s business.
Now that the workshop is over and done, here are some thoughts of what I’ve taken away from the experience, and why, in my opinion, this money invested has paid off:
* Disrupt routine. Too often, as business owners, we get ‘stuck in a rut’ or at the very least, we continue in the same patterns that we get comfortable in – whether they be business processes or networks and friendship circles. The decision to fly to somewhere you’ve never been disrupts your everyday habits and forces you to stop and see the world with fresh eyes again.
* Get out of your business. In line with the above, I also made the decision to *not* switch on international roaming on my mobile phone so that I was uncontactable (except for the occasional email when we had wi-fi access). This decision forced me to delegate work for the duration of the trip – putting me in a mindset to work on the business, not in it.
* Ask a better question. Whenever a business owner in the hot seat brought up an area that needed improvement, invariably, Perry Marshall could ‘sniff out’ the *real*, unspoken problem that was the issue. Rarely was the presenting symptom the problem. Participating in the 4 Man Intensive exposed me ‘better questions’ that then (by definition) had to lead to better, longer term solutions. Before my eyes I watched as hundreds of thousands of dollars was saved as seemingly good businesses ideas and advertising strategies were scrutinised by the collective wisdom in the room and ultimately found to have been lacking.
* If you’re the smartest person in your group, you need a new group. Curiously the *best* part of the whole experience was that even though I was surrounded by people who were much further along the journey than myself, at the end of the day – they are still just people. And I could actually imagine myself in a similar place as them, if I just put in the hard yards that they did. It was a curious sense of confidence – that even in a room full of superstars, there actually isn’t actually that much difference between you and them. No one was born into this – everyone started somewhere 🙂
* Be the most teachable person in the room. I’ve now walked away with a moleskine chock full of transferrable notes, strategies and ideas that I can now apply to my business and those of my clients. These range from the latest facebook marketing strategies to adwords performancing (of course!) to email autoresponder strategies to old school, direct response snail mail marketing.
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Although we are going through this crisis, this current situation can force us to come up with better and more efficient processes, internal collaborations and better leaderships.
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