owen at owengreaves dot com

Open & Free Business Model

The Definition Of The Open & Free Business Model

The Definition Of The Open & Free Business Model, it’s simple and yet complicated. It’s an idea, it’s a concept that should scare you, it will scare you, you will resist it, it will stretch you, and mostly I hope, it changes how you think about business. Everyone wants to earn a living, everyone. We do argue and debate as to which is the best way to make that living, most of us play it safe, we trade our time for dollars. What if you discover that system is not rewarding, it is from a pay cheque perspective, but it’s not enough is it, you want something more, but you struggle to define it.

The Open & Free Business Model is not just for business owners, it’s for you, the UN-entrepreneur, the one who has yet to take the risk of doing something that scares you. Putting yourself out on the limb, taking a chance, to put your passion out for the world to see and use.

The Open & Free Business Model is about freedom, freeing your mind from a transaction, the kind of transaction we have been taught for 100+ years. This model is about changing the way you do business, it takes you out of your comfort zone, it puts you on the other side. The side of the consumer, where you now have to trust those people formerly known as consumers, you have to give them something you have been unwilling to give in the past. You now have to provide a service or product first before payment is ever considered (but usually not), do you have the strength to explore this model? Come on the open & free journey, and we’ll find out.

The Open & Free Business Model is about transparency, about trust, about risk, and about change. It’s about the 90 / 10 rule, not the 80 / 20 rule. Giving away your product or service 90% of the time, while only charging 10% of the time. Handing over your product or service without payment, trusting those you served will tell others about your generosity, about how you do business. There is risk in this model, you may be taken advantage of, you may never get paid! Why would you do such a thing? This model is about your fears, facing the fear of loss.

If you take everything literally, then yes you will lose, but this model is calculated, it loves the unknown, it loves to be a servant. The risk is calculated, we don’t just give it away without a good reason, without a higher, stronger purpose.

This model is about creating something far larger than yourself. This model is about a journey. It’s about the expression of ones self. It’s about valuing people. It’s about truly being alive. Trusting that which you created is useful and helpful to those looking for your art. It’s not about the lime light, being famous, or 15 minutes of fame. It’s about those who have become your true fan. Those who are like-minded with your passion and vision.

The mechanics of this model is where the learning and stretching will come from, it won’t make the risk feel safer.

Free IS a business model, open & free is a better model, it allows us all to explore the fear we feel, but more importantly, it gives the strength to conquer that fear. Because that fear isn’t real, we just think it is.

The problem with trying anything that makes us feel unsafe, especially in business, we almost always want proof we won’t fail. If you look hard enough, and read this blog, you will find proof, and you will learn to embrace the model once you understand it. Don’t let the FREE part scare you off, it’s mostly a word, it IS an action we leverage and prosper from, not suffer. This model is different than anything you have learned in school, it’s not about what you think you already know about business, it’s about changing that which you know. It’s about changing your business for the better, far more rewarding than any amount of money can buy.

To learn more, hear more, just put your name & email address in the box to the right, and subscribe to The Future Of Business Updates. I’ll help you overcome the fear, and teach you the in’s and out’s of The Open & Free Business Model.

 

 

Happy New Year – 2013 Is Your Open & Free Year!

Happy-New-Year-2013My Goals & Plans for 2013 are not really for me, they are for you. It is my hope that the research and work I do here helps you, helps you see your business in a different way, and most of all, helps you increase revenues through the use of the open & free business model. What is it that you wish to learn, implement or execute in your business? Maybe you want to start a business, maybe you’re looking for marketing help, or maybe you just want to improve your current situation. If you’ve been a regular reader of this blog, and you haven’t signed up for the Future Of Business Updates, do that now. You can wait for the Pop-up or just sign-up to the right ->

As I contemplate what to focus on next here on this blog, it will always be based on the open & free business model, it will always be based on what you want and need, so I’m looking for your input. I often get asked the same question, how do I make money by using the 90/10 rule? If I’m giving away 90%, and only charging on 10%, how do I make that work in my business? It is this question that motivates me to help you, the simple fact that you actually want to know. Unfortunately, not everyone understands the model, or at least there is a perception of what it is I’m trying to teach you, you’re taking me too literally at times.

The best way to start your understanding of the model, is to read through this blog, listen to a few podcasts here, they are on iTunes as well. What you will find is, I’m talking about a new way of thinking, a paradigm shift, actually doing the opposite of what you have been taught in school. Businesses in your community are continuing to do what has always been done for the past 100+ years, they are doing things the old way, the Industrial Age way. I’m challenging you to stop doing that, I’m hoping you’ll allow me to teach you a new and exciting way of doing business.

WHAT SAY YOU?

It is here that I ask you:

1.) Are you curious about this model?

2.) Do you want to learn a different way of building your business?

3.) What is it that confuses you about the model?

4.) What are you afraid of in building your business?

5.) What area of your business are struggling in?

6.) Are you willing to pay the price and stick through this open & free strategy?

7.) What do you really want to know?

8.) What are your goals / plans for 2013?

9.) Would you attend a webinar on the open & free business model?

10.) Would you buy a Book called – “The Future Of Business – The Open & Free Business Model”?

These are just a few questions, but I’m hoping you’ll open up and share with me, that’s a huge part of being OPEN in this model, don’t let fear be the reason you don’t change anything in 2013.

Well enough about that, I want to wish you all a Happy New Year! Please don’t drink & drive, do enjoy yourself, and always think of others first, you’ll be happier and richer for it.

Many Blessings, and I look forward to your questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments, or just email me, I’ll respect your privacy.

 

 

 

 

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Freedom At 50!

I have a confession to make, sometimes, I just don’t know how to help you. Why? It’s because you don’t know what I know, and you can’t see what I see. It’s not your fault, you have been conditioned, blinded, and even had the wool pulled over your eyes by the industrial age of business. But today, you don’t have anywhere to hide, you already know too much, and that’s why you are afraid.

I was asked why I do what I do, why do I work so hard to help business owners and entrepreneurs that don’t seem to want to be helped? My answer was a little confusing to this person, I said, it’s what I do, I don’t really have a choice. You see, I feel it’s a calling, a voice in my head, my conscience, my deep concern for the business community, and my heart for people. I can’t not do this blog, I can’t stop reaching out to my business community, and I have to continually share what I know and see. You see, it’s not about me, it’s about you.

In my workshops, I do an hour long presentation, a look at what’s happening, and then I share what I see happening, and then I try to teach what to do about what’s happening. I try to help you create new ideas or deliverables for your business, maybe help you find the business you want to start, or one of the many passions fighting like hell to be let out of yourself.

I’m turning 55 this November, not sure how I feel about it but, 5 years ago I found myself suddenly free, yep, freedom at 50! It wasn’t because I was financially independent, it was simply this, the industrial age had spit me out on the curb, it was a blessing, although at the time it didn’t feel like it. I had a choice, pay attention to what was happening and figure out how to adopt it, or…be comfortable in the industrial age cocoon and the lie it is, was, and had told me. The truth was talking to me, and I was fighting against it.

I knew that day was going to come, January 27th, 2007. The harder I ignored what I knew was happening, the direction business was headed, the work situation seemed to get worse and worse, until one day it came to an end. You see, it wasn’t working for them or for me, I just couldn’t tow their party line another day. There was a lot going on behind the scenes I didn’t know about, and that’s fine, on February 1st, 2007, the company I used to work for, was sold. It was a kick in the butt, and seat on the curb. I even felt used, taken advantage of, but that’s not what this story is about.

So why am I sharing my story, its simple, I know many of you have similar stories, and you’re afraid just like I was, but I knew I was going to be OK, I didn’t know why, but I did. I know you will be too. Like you, the call in me was strong, that force was very strong, my passion was screaming at me to let it out, to take a chance and learn how to live with ambiguity. There I said it, ambiguity. That’s what most of us fear, we have this deep need to know what’s going to happen next, where the next meal is going to come from, and worse yet, when is the next payday going to happen. And it needs to happen religiously every two weeks!

The problem wasn’t doing it, the problem was, how do I do it? When you step outside the industrial age system, pay days are a reward for your faith walk, for your commitment to the call you feel inside, there is nothing the industrial age can offer that matches the reward of heeding your call, and the feeling of freedom you possess.

Freedom at 50 is hard when it doesn’t come on your terms, and most of us will have to work at something well past the age of 65 and even 70, what will you do, and what will it be. Will it be what the world and the industrial age tells you it should be, or will you learn to live another way, learn a new business model. Whichever you choose, you will have to work, it’s part of the curse of having the life you want to live.

I am writing this to you because my heart is aching, it’s even breaking, because you are struggling just as I did 5 years ago. You should know, I still struggle, but I am not controlled by it, my call and my passion make the struggle fade away.

So if you find yourself sitting on the side-lines (curb), or you know you have to make a change, don’t let fear control to call inside you, it could be the call is telling what to do and you’re simply ignoring it. If you do anything do this, always seek counsel from someone you trust, someone with perspective, from someone who can teach you how to live in the new age of business, from someone who is doing it, from someone who can show you how to become the passion inside you.

For years I fought against my passions, my desires, and simply did what the education system industrial age told me to do, I was wrong to listen. I teach an open & free business model because it works, it takes commitment, it takes patience, and it takes work….but it works. I’m selling ideas, I’m selling you the truth about what’s happening, and I’m selling a message of freedom. Freedom at 50 wasn’t my choice, but I’m grateful that it happened, it’s like Morpheus pulled me out of the Matrix. Which pill will you take, the industrial age lie, or the open & free business model

I hope sharing bits of my story helps you, will you have freedom at 50? If so, what are you doing, what do you want to do, and do you plan to do it?

 

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The Future Of Business – If I Were A Carpenter

If I were a carpenter, what would I build? I think of carpenter’s a builder’s, in fact, I think of entrepreneur’s the same way. Business owner’s used to be builder’s, but something happened, they were lulled into management mode. Carpenter’s are also builder’s from the industrial age, the art of carpentry is a dieing art, well at least the way we think of it. But that’s the point, how we think.

I have said many times, over and over again, it’s the tag on this blog, Mindset trumps skillset everytime. How we think about building, how we think about our business, how we think about everything really, it’s all changing and we are not. I was sharing with Chris Brogan on Kitchen Table Talks last week about how the this area has yet to embrace a new way of doing business. The new way? Becoming a social business, a human business. What are we so afraid of?

If I were a carpenter, I would build a business that opens your mind, that shares this new concept, this new open & free business model….wait….I have built it, but is it done? There’s another problem, we think in terms of being finished, social businesses, human businesses are never done. Do you think your relationships with people and businesses are ever finished, no. So why do we think, just because we are building a business, it will be finished someday? If you think you are finished, you will be. Think about that for a moment, let it settle for a moment.

You see, my business, I hope it is never done, I hope it draws you in, I hope it causes you to question the status quo….always. My prayer is that you will want to learn new ways of adopting the new way of doing business, if you don’t, someone else will, and your business will be finished.

There are some incredible people out here on the Internet sharing, (far too many too mention here) all the time, teaching you to see business differently, you want to but….you seem to fall back to what you’ve always done. It happens everytime you get into management mode, new ways are too hard to implement and maintain in your head, so you do what you’ve always done. Push back as hard as you try, time gets you everytime.

Imagine if you, just for a moment, what if being a carpenter was just invented today, what would you build? You build something that no longer works, or would you invent something new?

I challenge you, ask yourself the question based as if being a carpenter was invented today. If you were a carpenter, what would you build? A traditional business? probably, but I would suggest a different model. I would build a very open and free business model, a social business, a human business. What say you?

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The Future Of Business – Change Is Coming, And Lots Of It.

For as long as I can remember, nothing ever stays the same, and yet we fight tooth and nail to keep things in their rightful place so we know where to find it. Most of us even call ourselves change agents, that really only applies to everyone else right? We don’t mind walking others through change as long as it doesn’t impact our own little worlds. The truth is, when it comes to our businesses, we had better embrace change.

You would have to be in complete denial or not have a pulse to see that it’s not business as usual, just look around you, people are behaving differently more today than any other time in history. Hell, younger generations own a phone but don’t know how to speak on it, they only communicate via some flavour of text messaging. What happened, my sister used to live on the phone when she was a teenager, now it’s a mobile device in hand and we’ll text all day long.

If there’s one thing you should be learning here at owengreaves.com, it’s change. The world of business is not what we are comfortable with, we have to move with it or be ignored, especially in the digital realm. One of the first things to consider here is this, the same problem will always confront you, and that is how to get attention. We have been struggling with that one problem for some time, back in the day we thought Radio, TV, and Newspaper were the best ways to get that done, not anymore.

Enter in the Internet and it’s soon to be 5 Billion eyeballs, the playing field has changed (there’s that word), now reaching the world is much cheaper, and anyone can talk to anyone at any given time. But here’s the bigger problem, even though we can spread the word faster and cheaper, how do we actually get the masses attention? Well, now you have to change the way you look at your business, you have to change the way you think, because you no longer have control over it. That’s right, the consumer of tomorrow will not tolerate being manipulated into a sale, in fact, if they sense it, they’re gone. Today you have to be transparent, you can’t lie, mislead or trick and get away with it, that’s a problem for most big businesses because they have considered consumers as not that smart to figure things out. Today you have to give away something before consumers actually notice you. I’m generalizing of course, but you get the point, because you ARE smart people.

You’re probably wondering why I’m even talking about this, well, for some reason business owners are struggling with the change that needs to take place. Big business has to give up control, they have to learn how to trust the people formerly known as consumers. You’ve read that here many times before, but what’s the problem? Big business doesn’t know what to do, still, even after 5 years of heavy Social Media integration.

Let’s be honest here, Social Media has passed the I’m a new fad phase, Social is changing, it’s a natural process now in many circles, except small to medium businesses. Most of the smaller operations still want to do things the old way, they don’t understand the changes happening around them. Why? For the most part they aren’t paying attention, and attention is everything! What happens when over 60% of commerce is done on a handheld devices, when everything goes mobile, what will small to medium sized business do then? Play catchup, it will be too late. They can’t hide behind a lack of knowledge, there’s so much of it out here, so there’s a deeper reason, there has to be.

The funny thing about business owners and entrepreneurs is, they only have one vision for that business, they tend to only see how they can sell their product or service based on what they know and were taught. That’s usually old industrial age process and thinking, it’s not right or wrong, we must think differently today to see a bigger picture. Smart, well intentioned people struggle the most. Looking beyond the transaction, think more on the lines of interaction, it’s relationship building, it’s building trust, and that takes an investment and time. Mostly, it takes change. You will have to give more of your business away, put it consumers hands before the transaction will take place.

We are about to enter a world so mobile and social, we’ll think it was invented 15 years from now, a quantum leap is about to take place in the next 3 – 5 years, and I hope to reach as many business owners as possible before it happens. Social is no longer a platform, it’s a feature. We won’t even think Social Media anymore, it will be a natural DNA of everything we do, it will be everything mobile.

So build for mobile and let social be the tide or current if you will, those who get attention will have built their businesses future on smartphones, and above all, give consumers access and a seamless way to buy.

Use Nine Inch Nails business model, CWF + RTB = $$$$ it’s the 90 /10 rule.

I’m a little long winded today I know, but I can’t help it, I run into far too many business owners fighting the change, change happens every second of our lives, don’t fight it, embrace it. Change is coming, and lots of it. Are you prepared, if not, I’m available to help.

 

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