After years of helping clients codify knowledge into training systems, I realized it was time to document much more of my own “brilliance” – this post shares five insights I gained through that process. I hope you will enjoy this video and/or summary below.
Also, please join me for a live Q&A on bringing your hard-won expertise and wisdom to the next level and how AI can be useful.
Your work is going to fill a large part of your life and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.Steve Jobs
I love that quote.
In this post, I share what I’ve done to codify my knowledge after recommending to countless clients to do the same.
When you codify the expertise that stems from doing the work you love, you ensure its impact and reward will continue even when you move on. At some point, we all consider passing our work on to others. Even before we move on, we want to scale up and grow both the impact and reward of our work.
And wouldn’t it be ideal to enjoy more freedom while growing what we do? Exactly!
A Pet Peeve …
I don’t like seeing someone providing a service but not using it for themselves—like a marketer with a poor website or the proverbial shoemaker without good shoes. For years, I’ve helped clients extract knowledge from their minds and turn it into systems to train team members, partners, collaborators, and customers.
Remember, there are two types of knowledge:
- Conscious knowledge we can actively think about
- Unconscious knowledge we use automatically without realizing it
What Have I Done To Apply That Same Concept to My Work?
I’m working on it. The effort has led to the creation of The Brilliance Mining Academy. I’ll share five things I’ve learned along the way:
1. Calling My Knowledge “Brilliance” Was Hard
Even coming up with the title for this post made me confront the word “brilliance.” I easily call client expertise that—it’s unique wisdom you can’t look up. But naming my knowledge “brilliance” felt boastful. I had to put it in quotes at first!
It gives me empathy for how you might feel when I call your knowledge brilliant. It’s easy to diminish your expertise as just bits and pieces anyone could find. But you have valuable experience that is unique in its combination. Let’s call it brilliance and mine it out of our brains, where it sits unwritten and unrecorded.
If you do work you love with impact, how do you feel about losing that brilliance when moving on? What happens to your quality of life?
This year, I spent three weeks trekking in Nepal and three weeks with family in Germany. How do you step away without your business nosediving? How do you scale your business right now, preserve free time for yourself and strategic thinking, AND prepare your business for passing it on someday?
The answer is: You admit you have “brilliance” and then begin to mine it. That is what I’m doing, too. I’m in the same boat as you are.
2. Taking It Step-by-Step
In Nepal, after hours of trekking up and down one steep valley after another, we came to enormous natural rock steps shooting straight up to the horizon. Exhausted, I had no idea how to tackle them. I told myself the only way was step by step—counting my steps, 1, 2, 3.
When I got home and told friends about my trekking metaphor, they laughed. “Trekking in Nepal – that is so relatable for us,” they joked. But it’s true. Whether in Nepal or anywhere, going step-by-step is the only way forward. It’s critical for growth and preserving your hard-won expertise. Otherwise, you stay stuck at your current bandwidth and struggle to transfer the business.
3. Ditch Perfectionism
I’m a recovering perfectionist. Intellectually, I know nothing is perfect, but it’s hard to release and use work that feels imperfect or take advantage of a work in progress.
Perfectionism is a sinister enemy. “Perfect” doesn’t exist. The illusion of “perfect” prevents releasing good work and slows, even halts progress. I teach creating a “minimum viable product.” Use something helpful ASAP and improve iteratively.
I force myself to do this, too.
Recently, I recorded a video on getting started by
- Recording yourself speaking about a topic you know about and recording it on video. That is so easy to do. Now, you have an asset you didn’t have before!
- Transcribing the audio.
- Using AI to summarize the key points. It’s not perfect, but it is already quite valuable!
- Refining it and adding it to a Learning Management System (LMS)
- Adding quizzes and assignments.
At each step, your knowledge became even more useful!
4. AI Can Be Used To Accelerate Brilliance Mining™
Artificial intelligence (AI) won’t replace your judgment. It can process lots of data quickly. Use it to mine brilliance and create training materials faster. For example, record videos and get AI-generated transcripts and summaries. Then, review and edit. This process is now much faster than purely manual methods (but you still must check accuracy and completeness)!
5. Teach Your Way of Thinking and Judging Situations
Recording your brilliance lets you teach your judgment skills. Explain how you think through problems and make decisions. It reveals deeper layers of knowledge over time. (see more on that in the video).
First, train rote skills so others can handle them. Free yourself from work that might be tedious for you (but still challenging for others). Empower others and gain more time for higher-level work. The training systems become the immortal backbone of your company’s training, freed from your direct involvement but imbued with your expertise. Of course, you still want to offer some mentoring on top of that (and capture the brilliance you observe there).
Preserving Your Legacy
If you love and believe in your work, you probably want it to live on.
For me, Brilliance Mining™ is about more than money. It’s about creating a community of business owners and founders of non-profit organizations that appreciate the value of mining what they know and making it scalable and immortal.
I’m in the same boat as you are. I’m still mining my brain, too! Sometimes, I need fresh eyes from someone else to see what is missing or need more clarity. It’s an ongoing journey of extracting and refining knowledge. Each level builds on the last into a valuable training legacy.
Let me know your thoughts! I’ll be doing a live Q&A—details to come. Hope to see you there!
Join My Free Virtual Q&A – It Is Interactive!
We will discuss this in a free virtual Q&A tomorrow at 12 o’clock CST, and I would love to see you there. Press the golden button to register.
P.S.: I appreciate you commenting and sharing this Treasure Tuesday with others. Thank you!