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Firepole Funnies #20: Ideal Working Conditions
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Comic20

Enjoying the Firepole Funnies?

If you liked what you read here, please let Christina (and the rest of the Firepole team) know in the comments below. Feel free to suggest future comic strip ideas – we can’t guarantee we’ll use your idea, but we’re always open to suggestions!
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Inside Firepole: First Impressions and Joining a Growing Team
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InsideFirepoleStarting a new job. For some, it’s an exciting new adventure. For others, it’s fraught with scary what ifs. So many things come into play at the beginning of a new journey, and we newbies here at Firepole have something to say about it!

As Firepole grows and evolves, so does the team. We wanted to give everyone an insider look (in our own words) at what it’s like to come on board as a new team member of its distributed team.

David Kirshbaum

Hi everyone, David here, student advisor on the Education Team under the awesome leadership of Megan, helping our new ABM students get oriented and start building their businesses!

I’ve been a fan of Firepole since I attended a webinar with Danny during the first launch of ABM in 2013. I was immediately impressed with the clarity, depth, and integrity that he conveyed, and I have seen those qualities carry through as Firepole has grown. I decided to apply for this position after a lengthy life transition involving a couple of cross-country moves and some soul-searching travel. I saw the email inviting applicants, and it was a huge yes for me. I love that I get to help so many incredible people bring their work into the world!

There’s a lot I bring to the table as a student advisor- abilities to quickly understand complex systems and find solutions for both intellectual and emotional challenges, a high level of empathy and experience as a coach, and years of experience running small businesses and studying entrepreneurship. My biggest goals for my work at Firepole are to help our students stay motivated and focused, and to help them believe in themselves while building a solid business foundation.

My first few weeks have been very full and exciting. I started engaging with new and potential students within the first few days, with amazing support from Megan and everyone on the team. From day one I have felt like an integral part of this dynamic and dedicated team, not just some new hire. The level of training and collaboration, the high morale, and the pure fun factor are all fantastic. I’m learning a tremendous amount and will have continual opportunities for professional development. Our students are amazing people working on some the coolest projects on the planet! I feel incredibly blessed.

Christy Campbell

When Firepole Marketing issued a call for a new Student Advisor, I sent in my application knowing that I’d be applying alongside so many other incredible members of the Firepole community; I really had no idea how far I’d make it. But through every step along the way, I was consistently impressed with how thorough the interview process was, from gauging aptitude to personality and value alignment, I had a great sense that if the job was offered, it was after an intensely careful selection process. And upon joining the team, I knew that, for this reason, I was counting a fantastic group of folks as my colleagues who each, on their own, bring so much to the table.

Starting in the midst of a launch meant being thrown directly into the deep end of the job, but I can honestly say we’ve had a lot of fun. Small mistakes have been made (and thankfully, rectified) as I step into this new role, but what has consistently impressed me most is the re-affirmation that we’re all human and that’s what we bring to the table–a group of dedicated people who are doing their darnedest to help and support a community of folks who want to change the world through their ideas, courses, businesses, writing and side projects.

Matthew Graves

Wow, what a whirlwind first couple of weeks at Firepole Marketing. I spent years learning so much from being one of Danny’s audience, but I feel like I have surpassed all that learning in just the last three weeks.

As the Project Manager and Operations Lead at Firepole Marketing, my role on the team is to keep the systems running smoothly, making sure that everything is progressing on schedule, and that the entire team has everything they need. We have been growing rapidly and have lots of great ideas on how to deliver more value to our audience, so there are lots of things to keep managed.

At many companies, the word “teamwork: is just a buzz word, but not here. Right from the first orientation meeting, we were welcomed with open arms. The focus is on working together to provide the best experience to our “audience”, but not just as a collection of job titles, but truly as individuals. Each person is given the chance to contribute to the team in the way they can best use their unique abilities. We are encouraged to grow our knowledge and contribution.

Great organizations create amazing products that impact people’s lives. Each day, our team is working to help our Beacons make a larger impact in their communities. I am proud to be part of the mission to make the world a better place by making business better.

Oleg Starko

I work as a Junior Copywriter, which means I get to write, and tinker with, all sorts of content. On any given day, I could be doing email campaigns, content reports, case studies, web copy, scripts for Firepole videos… and that’s before lunch!

Coming from a 100% freelance background, getting a job at Firepole was an unusual change for me. I was worried about feeling replaceable, disposable even; terrified of being thrust into the thick of it with barely any training or advice to guide me.

I mean, from the hiring process I had a solid idea about what Firepole was like as a company, and I saw early on that those fears were unfounded. But they remained as a barely discernible but persistent voice at the back of my mind.

But when I actually joined, I was immediately surprised (in the best way possible) how helpful and enthusiastic everyone on the team was. They are making my transition from solo professional to part of a distributed team smooth and fun.

As for the work itself, it’s challenging but fun. This is exactly the high-variety, iterative kind of stuff that a geeky person like me loves to do. As long as I get to play with copy and come up with new ways to deliver Firepole’s message and know-how clearer and better, I’m happy. 😉

Selene Benjamin

Starting a new job is always exciting. The unknown is a place I’ve always been comfortable. But often once the unknown becomes the known, sometimes it’s not so exciting anymore. So many jobs aren’t what they were sold to be and are ordinarily filled with unproductive meetings, busy work that is, at times, necessary but often is not, and sadly a lot of coworkers who just aren’t on the same page.

No doubt about it, my experiences with Firepole have been out of the ordinary right from the beginning. A recent move back to my hometown in Texas left me looking for the “perfect” job (as well as wondering if such a thing even existed). After a few weeks of searching, I decided to sit down and make a list of what that “perfect” job looked like to me; work from home, somewhere I could contribute but also have the chance to learn and grow, a place where making the world a better place mattered, etc.

Feeling good about my list, I put it aside determined to start my search anew the following day. The very next day, I get the email announcing the blog editor position. And wouldn’t you know it, it pretty much matched my list exactly. How could I not apply? With each round of questions, I knew this was where I wanted to be.

So what’s it been like joining the Firepole team? Exciting, fun, and at times a little overwhelming. It should come as no surprise that the best is expected here. There’s a lot to be learned and a lot to do. But it’s a challenge I’ve enjoyed from day 1.

It helps that everyone on the team from Danny to all of us new kids, has been so open and welcoming and goes above and beyond to make you feel like a valued member of the group. From daily check-ins on Skype to constant communication on Slack (and of course, email) the proverbial door is always open to anyone’s “office” in Firepole. I can’t wait to see how the company grows and how each one us is able to contribute.

Tell us. Do you have any questions about what it’s like working at Firepole? Or maybe what it looks like working on a completely remote, distributed team? Let us know in the comments!

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CEI 114: Leveling Up Your Gamification with Nir Eyal
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Gamification is a term that’s being thrown around a lot these days. From badges to leaderboards and beyond, everyone is trying to build their products with the type of gaming that makes them downright addictive. But it’s not always as simple as a points system, especially when you consider what you’re trying to gamify.

Today, Danny’s guest is Nir Eyal, author of Hooked, and host of a number of different workshops focused on building habits.

Let’s get started! Just click the play button below.

Podcast runtime: 24 min 32 seconds | Transcript

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Going Crazy Trying to Get All Your Business Systems to Talk to Each Other? 5 Signs You Need Small Business ERP
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Going Crazy Tryinh to Get Your Business Systems to Talk to Each Other? 5 Signs you Need Small Business ERPDoes this sound familiar?

A small business owner sells her products online and to a few select resellers. She manages all her sales and inventory in scattered spreadsheets, and laboriously creates custom invoicing with Word documents. She uses a basic email provider, and has a WordPress site to sell her products and represent her company.

While her business is very small, this strategy works fine. But as her business grows, she’s spending more and more time holding everything together. She’s researching, buying, and learning more and more services to manage her calendar, productivity, and marketing. More and more she’s making different payments and spending more and more time logging in and out of different accounts.

Worst of all, she’s less and less in touch with her business, her dreams, and her love for what she does.

Many small business owners hit this particular wall as their company starts to grow. She may not know it, but what she needs is ERP software (enterprise resource planning).

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Marketing Tactics and Strategies Aren’t as Important as You Thought. Here’s Why.
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We’re repeatedly sold on the idea that we have to just use the right marketing tactics to get great results. How many “right” and “guaranteed” tactics have you tried?

Whether it’s blogging, a certain type of advertising, or social media, it’s rarely the answer we were looking for.

Complete strategies are a step in the right direction. But even those often based on someone having found some magical tactic that’s the key to business results.

Marketing tactics and strategies provide an often tempting expectation of results. When we find a new tactic, we can for a moment feel a surge of hope: “Maybe this is what I needed all along and I finally found it!”

Yet, as practically everyone can attest, a new tactic or strategy rarely creates incredible results. Not never, but rarely.

So, let’s dig deeper into why even the best marketing tactic or strategy for you can’t change things on its own.

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