Braintrust :: This is how we do it...
3 min read

Braintrust :: This is how we do it...

In the last two emails, I shared with you my personal experience of the Farnam Street workshops and how the Pixar Braintrust adds significant value to a creative process.

I want you to have access a similar experience. To summon the expertise of a diverse group of experts towards a topic of your choice. To learn from the challenges of other entrepreneurs. To put yourself in their shoes and see how the feedback helps them to see a path forward. It is going to be transformative!

Here's how we're gonna do it:

  • The Braintrust workshop will be held this weekend February 20/21
  • Group size is limited to 8 participants
  • You send one challenge you face at the moment
  • I'll compile and share all the challenges with the group before the event so that we can all prepare

During the workshop, we dedicate one hour to each participant in the following format:

  • 5 minutes intro by the contributor, explaining the challenge
  • 15 minutes silent note-taking/brain dump from everyone in a shared Notion space (the contributor will answer questions on-demand in the chat)
  • 40 minutes conversation in the conversation where I am going to take notes

The detail schedule of the workshop depends on the participants. As this is a remote event, we'll try to keep the sessions reasonably short. If we are 8 people, we could do four 2,5 hour sessions, spread across the weekend. That way you'll be able to rest or take a walk during the sessions. You'll also still find time to enjoy the weekend. We'll agree on detailed timing once we know who signed up for the event.

The challenge you bring is entirely up to you, just like a diverse group leads to a better result, a diverse choice of topics will be beneficial for everyone. As our community revolves around knowledge entrepreneurs, I still recommend thinking of entrepreneurial challenges first: Is my expertise clear enough? How can I grow my audience? What do you think about this product idea? How can I start earning with this? The more specific, the better, as it will lead to clearer feedback. But you'll see that due to the conversational format of the event, there will always be a path to create significant value for you.

For the first time, I'll introduce the deliberate use of note-taking. I noticed in the past that conversations put a limit on the bandwidth of information flow. It felt like we left some value on the table after the event, simply because of time constraints. From my note-taking expertise, I know that even short statements or references in writing can lead to profound additional insights. So we'll dedicate 15 minutes in each session to silent note-taking about the topic at hand. I am also going to take notes of the conversation that follows. I'm confident that you'll discover significant value in the "package of notes" you'll receive after each session. It is also an opportunity to see how Notion is ideal for this purpose.

For the first time, I am going to ask for a fee to participate in the event. There are several reasons for this: first and foremost I want to lead with example. If you are confident to create value with your expertise, you should ask for a part of the value in return. This will make your expertise sustainable. The event also requires significant effort and time for preparation on my part. Besides, a price tag will self-select a segment of the audience that is committed to taking the journey of a knowledge entrepreneur seriously.

However, I will offer a flex-fee ticket for everyone that struggles to afford the price. With a flex-fee ticket, you can participate in the full event first and only then decide on whatever amount you want to or can pay for it. I intend to offer a flex-fee contingent for all paid events going forward. That way money doesn't have to be a barrier for people that want to join but can't afford the asking price.

I'll share more details on the offer tomorrow, as I am currently in the process of setting up a Gumroad page for this.

In the meantime, I am open for any feedback you might have 😀

Achim