Episode 138: Taming the Tech Monster with Anke Herman – Transcript
Rennie Gabriel 00:10
Hi folks, welcome to Episode 138 of the Wealth On Any Income Podcast. This is where we talk about money tips, techniques, attitudes, information, and provide inspiration around your business, and your money. I'm your host, Rennie Gabriel. In past episodes, we spoke about how to understand the numbers from your business, how to measure the level of pleasure based on where you spend your money, how to track your money in 5 to 10 seconds, what determines how close you are to Complete Financial Choice®, and how to run your business without being in your business. Last week, we had Jonathan Jay, who has been successfully buying and selling businesses for over 30 years. Today, we have as our guest Anke Herrmann. In 2004 Anke quit her software developer career in London, moved to Spain, and started a sewing business specializing in flamenco dance costumes. Let's see what happens, was her business plan. Well, now she brings her background in tech, and everything she's learned over the years about business, marketing and psychology to help coaches and educators turn their big picture ideas into sold out online offers without tech headaches. Anke, welcome to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast.
Anke Herrmann 01:38
Thanks so much for having me. I'm glad to be here with you.
Rennie Gabriel 01:42
Terrific. It's good to see you again on the show. Well, let's get right to it with some questions. Well, it sounds like, you know, you're helping people with their technology. But let's talk about why you're doing what you're doing.
Anke Herrmann 01:57
I guess it's my grandma's fault. In a way, it's my grandma's fault, because as long as I can remember, she had all these plans, all these things she was going to do. And then she passed away. Not ever. Like literally she died with her music still inside - right? And that always felt like such a waste of potential, of you know, of creativity, all the things. Because she was really talented and she had all these ideas and just never felt that she could do what she wanted to do. So I have this incredibly strong urge to make the most of life. And, you know, and help others. Because I stumbled across a book by an Australian lady called Bronnie Ware it's called, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying. And because she was a nurse, so she would basically talk to people at the end of their lives. And she was there. And the one thing, number one - and I always tear up when I even think about it - number one regret, top regret of people is not having gone for their dreams, not having done what they really wanted to do. And that gets me every time because I've seen it with my grandma. So literally, I'm out there to put everything I have on the table, anything I've learned, anything I know, any resources I have to make sure that people who come in contact with me won't be one of the, won't be those people who have those regrets. Like if you a dream, go for it.
Rennie Gabriel 03:42
And that's surprising for your grandma figuring she was experiencing that of other people who weren't going for theirs, and then she didn't go for hers. So I applaud you for going for yours. As you know, I donate 100% of the profits from the work I do to various animal and veteran charities. So tell me if there's a charity that you support and what they do.
Anke Herrmann 04:09
Dogs, like I've always loved dogs, and I've always wanted a dog and when I came to Spain, when I started my own business, and I knew I was going to work from home, you know, I knew I was going to have a dog and yeah. So my dogs are usually from the street. So the charity I support is a local charity. They basically help rescue dogs, you know sometimes cats too. You know, basically off the street. help any with any medical issues that need to be sorted out and then find homes for them. And yeah, so that's like, yeah, I don't know if you can look into dog's eyes and not feel anything I just like that's just, you're not...
Rennie Gabriel 04:51
I can't look into a dog's eyes and not feel anything. I just feel the unconditional love they have.
Anke Herrmann 04:57
Exactly, exactly. So yeah, that's the passion. Yeah.
Rennie Gabriel 05:03
Thank you, Anke. So tell me who your target market is or target markets.
Anke Herrmann 05:09
They're people, usually 50 and over. I do coaches, sometimes they've written a book, therapists, educators. People who have a vision, a mission, like something that they've like really seen in their life, something, and some of them have a whole body of work, and they want to bring this out to a bigger audience. You know, they want to really make an impact so, Oh, I want to offer my services online. But then it's like, Oh, wait, yeah, the tech, and how am I going to do all that? Like, that's usually how they come to me. Can you help with the tech? So that's usually, you know, like, when we start, we find, well, that's just the surface of like, just the problem that they can see. And it gets fixed by digging a little deeper. But, yeah, that's basically . . . People know me as the tech monster whisperer. Because, you know, because it's, I think the thing is, the background in software development wasn't sort of my first career choice. My choice of trade, you know, academic education - I'm a linguist, and I'm a language teacher. So I'm a teacher. Right? So people don't feel stupid when they talk to me. And that, you know, and I have, like, I've been told I have the patience of a saint. So, you know, it's like that digging out, like, what is it that we're actually trying to create? How to best create that? So, yeah, that's why people kind of feel, Somebody's written "peace" on the notebook that she has for our work together, you know, because that's basically what's on offer.
Rennie Gabriel 06:41
Thank you. Yeah, when someone needs to learn something they don't want to be talked down to. Well, so tell me, what was your biggest failure, whether it was personal or business - it's a two part question - and what insight did you gain from that, that you're using?
Anke Herrmann 07:00
The biggest failure? I mean, it's one of those things, you know, in hindsight it doesn't really, It feels like the lesson has been such a gift. Right? But the the biggest failure was my first business that sewing business. That sounds so romantic, and so out there. Well, you know, you do what you know, you know, you don't know what you don't know. So I didn't know anything about strategy and business building. I wanted to have a sewing business - I wanted to do creative work and I love sewing. So I wanted to sew all day, every day. So you probably laugh even at the thought of that, but that's how I started. And what happened was that I just had no boundaries at all. You know, I literally misunderstood what serving my clients meant. I understood that when somebody comes and wants a dress, well, it's my job to give it to them - at the time they want it, how they want it, where they want it. So "yes" was the default answer. And as you can imagine, that was quite alright to get the first couple of clients. But yeah, I built myself a hamster wheel that was so relentless. That I, you know, I didn't know. I didn't even know it was called burnout. But I had like cold sores on both sides. Like, weighing... I don't know, like, I had photos, it looks really quite anorexic, like shoulder bones sticking out. You know, I was literally at the end of my wits, you know, physically, mentally, emotionally. I was just like, yeah, I don't think I've ever felt so worn down. You know, because the pressure, the constant, you know, stress and pressure, and there was always like, you know, however, it doesn't, it didn't matter how much I did, how fast I worked. It was never enough. Like there was always somebody who wanted more faster. And it was like, relentless, and it didn't . . . And I think I probably have a higher threshold for suffering because I took a long time to catch on, but it literally took me to that rock bottom, like, I'm done with this. I'm out. I'm just not, I just no longer care. That, I needed that to have the courage to say no to somebody, because in my mind, Oh, this is all word of mouth business, right? So if I say no, they'll be all upset and then they'll leave and they don't come back and then they badmouth me, and then they tell everybody else. And in my mind, saying no to someone meant I was going to be probably in the streets a couple of months later, because it was going to ruin my business. So you can imagine you wouldn't say easily no with that. But when I came to the point that I felt like, I don't know if I care? If this is what living your dream is, I want nothing to do with it. Then I said no. And I remember the first time I said no to somebody, you know, Oh, can you bring the dress to the theater on Sunday night at 10pm? And I'm, Sorry, can't do it. And she goes, All right, then, well, I guess I'll pick it up on Monday. You know, and that was the moment when, but it took that courage to no longer care about the consequences. I was certain, you know, they're going to come at me, it took that to actually then be able to experience that, Oh, no, it doesn't automatically mean that people will be upset. And then it was one of the you know, it was a liberating moment, really humbling too, because when I got to see that whole pressure cooker, that I'd actually created that. Not very nice to see that I could be, Oh, I could have saved myself years of struggle, you know, but it was that huge insight to see that saying yes or no has no connection whatsoever with whether people will be happy or unhappy. And that's been a giant gift. You know, because it allows me to say yes to things I want to say yes to, and no to things I want to say no to, which means I can actually now really serve people rather than just woozling around trying to please everyone.
Rennie Gabriel 11:21
That sounds like such a fabulous lesson for everyone, that it is okay to say no. And oftentimes, when I studied very wealthy people, they talk about, I've learned how to say no more than yes. Beautiful. Thank you, Anke. Let me ask you this. When it comes to serving people with your tech, do you have a case study, an example, of someone who came to you in a certain situation and how you supported them and what that result was?
Anke Herrmann 11:57
Well, people usually come with a big picture idea. Like, Oh, I want to create a program. I want to create a community. Right? So working with a client, she is a corporate trainer, and she says I want to no longer depend on that consultancy to call me or you know, this company to send me somewhere, I want to get my own clients. So I want to offer a program and I want to offer a workshop that people can sign up for. And so basically, I help them figure out like, what is the program? Who is it for? What should the topic of that workshop be? How are we going to fill that? And then I took care of the text. So I did all the setup and the landing pages. And when somebody submits the form, they get this email, they get some fare They get these reminders, like all those mechanics, right? So that in the end, she got a link, she says, Okay, this is where you send people. And she looks at me, and she literally kind of almost teared up. And she goes, Do you know that I've been trying to put this together for the last five years? You know, because you always get stuck somewhere in the weeds of the details, and not knowing how to put it all together. And so in the end, it was like, Oh, yeah, no, that's like a week job. So it's just that speed and that ease of it. When you have the mechanics and the back end, and all of that taken care of and somebody to poke a hole into, Well no, look that copy that doesn't like, the way that's positioned doesn't really make sense. We need something else in there. So that second pair of eyes to help you because you know how it's hard to be objective about your own stuff, right? It's always . . . So I can be this vicious devil's advocate, like, in a nice way, you know, but I'll point out the things where there's like, gaps in the logic, so that it's both from the content and offer, and audience building, and then the mechanics of it. You know, like, Okay, I'll just take care of that for you so you don't have to spend your time trying to figure that stuff out. Because the thing is, people come to me, they're not 20 years old, like they don't have 20 years to try and now tinker around and figure out how all that stuff works. So I make sure they don't need to spend their time there.
Rennie Gabriel 14:21
Oh, terrific. Well, I'm going to guess there are people listening who want to get a hold of you and know more. Do you have something that you can offer so that people can get more value from this conversation?
Anke Herrmann 14:33
Absolutely. I've got a free copy of my book, Taming the Tech Monster.
Rennie Gabriel 14:39
It's a cute cover too.
Anke Herrmann 14:42
That is and because a little techie, the Tech Monster, it kind of - its the message of the book. You know what feels like this horrible monster is really just a friendly little dragon that wants to play. And that's kind of what the book's about. So it's called Taming the Tech Monster and it's tech-free, pretty much. It's full of stories. It's full of myth-busting, you know, mind-shifting to help people, not fear, you know, the dealing with the tech. So that stuff won't get in the way. And you can get a free copy if you go to ankeherrmann.com/wealthonanyincome.
Rennie Gabriel 15:20
Okay, well, I'll have that in the show notes for people that can just click on it and get to you. And is there any question that I should have asked that would also give some additional great value?
Anke Herrmann 15:35
Yeah, there's like, there's is my favorite one. It's, I have a very provocative tagline. I always say to people, what looks like a tech problem never is. Because people always come . . . I used to say, hardly ever. As I get older, I literally more and more I see it, what looks like a tech problem never is. Every single time . . . Tech is kind of where it shows it's like, it's like when you go to the doctor and you say, you know, look, my shoulder hurts. But in the end, the problem's actually in your lower back. Right? It's just that's where it shows up. And that's where it hurts and tech's a bit like that because every single time somebody has a tech problem, you find, well, I call it we have to polish the opal first, you know, like, what's the offer? Like? What is it that you're trying? Who is this for? Right? How do you go about, you know, putting it out there? You know, people usually have no idea of what's involved. They just put it somewhere on social media, and then they get disappointed. And the part that most people really struggle with is this fleshing out. Right? People have this, Oh, I just want a page that has a button that says enroll. Right? And I'll go, So what happens when I click on it? Well, then you enroll. Well, what does that mean? Right. So that level of detail. Okay, what's the next thing I'll see? What should I get when I've just paid, right? So literally fleshing out those details is really the bridge between your idea and the tech. And if you try and skip that - the tech tool is ruthless. Do you want this or do you want that? Right? And most of the time, the frustration comes because people aren't, you don't skip steps, because you don't want to take them, you skip them because you don't know they're there. People are not aware of this bit of digging into fleshing out like, what should that actually look like? You know, and it's a fun process when somebody guides you through it, because you get to think about your thing in a whole new way. But if you try and skip it, the tech will ask you questions that you don't know how to answer and that's where the frustration comes in. So it's like, you know, when it feels hard, you're skipping steps. Slow down and you'll see it gets easier.
Rennie Gabriel 18:00
That makes so much sense. I remember something that you said, it doesn't matter how fast you run if you're heading in the wrong direction.
Anke Herrmann 18:10
Rennie Gabriel 18:13
Anke, thank you for being on the Wealth On Any Income show.
Anke Herrmann 18:18
Thanks so much for having me.
Rennie Gabriel 18:19
You're welcome. And to all of those who are listening, if you'd like to know how books, movies and Society programs you to be poor, and what the cure is, then log on to wealthonanyincome.com/TEDx, you'll get to hear my TEDx talk and can request a free 9-Step Roadmap to Complete Financial Choice® and Philanthropy, and receive a weekly email with tips, techniques, or inspiration around your business, and your money. And if you'd like to see how you can increase your wealth, and donate to the causes that touch your heart, please check out our affordable program, Wealth with Purpose. To my listeners, thank you for tuning in. Next week, we'll have Lisa Rodino, who helps entrepreneurs get the funding they need from alternative sources. You can listen to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast on your favorite platform, and please rate, review and subscribe. And until next week, be prosperous. Bye bye for now.