So, I was asked this fascinating question just recently by one of my content writers. She asked me how to be creative and how we can continue being creative. Well, we’re living in a world that’s changing literally every year, month, week, day. The YouTube’s and Apple’s of the world can ultimately fall apart just as Toys R Us and other massive chains in different countries plummeted. Well, if we take a look at my ESL podcast and how I’ve been teaching in Thailand, this is probably the only way I can relate to this post.
When I first moved to Thailand, I was making a sloppy $600 USD a month. Now, the teacher told me I would get paid $66 dollars less because I was black, too. What was I doing at this school? Teaching younger kids — which required a lot of creativity. That’s basically it. For five months I didn’t have any personal development and didn’t try learning useful skills that will make me a hot commodity.
I moved up to $1000 dollars a month, which is an 80% increase, teaching technical college students. Did I learn anything while I was there? Absolutely not…but with 5 months experience, this gave me a significant pay raise that I never thought I would get.
When I finally moved outside of Bangkok, not only did I make 2k USD a month, but I first taught TOEIC (a test preparation course to enable the student to apply for higher paying jobs based on their English language literacy). I learned to teach 4-skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening), academic writing, IELTS, business English and other facets. When they saw I was an excellent speaker, they wanted me to create a new course that catered to conversation, which was a success beyond a success. I got gigs teaching at the top-5 companies within these borders (email writing, business English and other areas), and when this happened, jealousy began growing.
Then I knew I was on the right path. The more I learned, the more I earn.
In 2015, I created a YouTube video that now has over 9k views…..never did I think that would happen. It wasn’t until earlier this year that I had the idea, “hey, if there are lots of people viewing my videos YouTube, how about I make a podcast and see where it goes? Bingo! From there, my podcast soared over the last couple of months. I began creating 1-minute videos on Instagram and my Facebook page — resulting in BIG HITS. I turned that into online coaching, which I do live on the weekends and set up the refreshment course via YouTube.
A coach for Toyota, who has traveled the world and who I’ve been teaching the past three weeks (TOEFL) spoke to me for twenty minutes at the end of class saying, “you have e-test, e-learning, coaching, and refreshing). While he was talking to me, I realized that I was unconsciously doing two of them already (coaching and refreshing) and it has been STELLAR since beginning two weeks ago.
If I can create an e-test for my students and provide specialized courses in the different sectors of English, this could be the new-age part of learning. If you haven’t already heard, universities are 1 trillion in debt and now people are realizing that university, is indeed, a scam. In ten years time, we could be learning in virtual reality. The language centers here in Thailand and all over the world, which are my competitors, can no longer provide a book and a “teacher” to teach from a book (super easy to do). They’ll have to become more creative.
So, how do I stay relevant? Integration of sophisticated lessons that will capture the imaginations of my students, making them better members of society while focusing on their core genius. Professors around the world teach what’s only in books, and that will all be gone once AI is implemented and we no longer need to memorize information that’s useless.
Being creative is doing exactly what the big companies, which have failed, didn’t do. Continue evolving and providing your customers with more things and innovate your technology to make life easier. Jack Ma says “find a need and fill it.”
If you had known about Buzzsprout in the beginning of the year, you would know how garbage it was. This platform, which podcasters can use to host, was completely useless compared to SoundCloud (a now “pay for plays” platform). I didn’t know the metrics, who was listening, the last x amount of plays, or ANYTHING. It was generic as hell compared to sites like Spreaker — a site I can see all the sources on. However, I’m able to schedule my ESL podcasts now, transcript for little to no money (compared to hosting sites which charge 10x more), and I can put chapter markers in my podcast — a feature that has been invented on any other platform.
Buzzsprout knows in order for it to stay afloat, it has to continue evolving. The moment it began to grow complacent (at the beginning of the year), that was beginning of its downfall.
Always continue making life easier for your customers. Period.