May 10, 2024

A philosophical question about packaging expertise - part 2

Thanks to everyone who sent in answers to the question I posed in my last message!

If you missed it, here’s a short version of the question:

Since getting direct coaching is more effective than reading a book, isn’t a coach cheating people by publishing a book?

I was planning to post all the answers today, but there were way too many.

Plus, pretty much everyone had the same thoughts on the matter.

The answer from the group was a resounding “No, the coach is not cheating anyone by packaging their expertise as a book!”

List member Sarah C. put it perfectly:

Of course not! Mostly because that doesn’t take into account whether or not I can afford the coaching (or want to dedicate the time to weekly coaching, etc.). If I can’t afford the coaching but I can afford the book, at least I can still get a portion of the value. Since it’s at a much lower cost, the “bang for my buck” might be the same or even better. Running a business is constantly about making tradeoffs around costs and benefits.

ASIDE: There were some other themes that cropped up as well, like “people probably wouldn’t buy the coaching if they hadn’t read the book first,” “it would be unethical to NOT publish the book,” and my favorite, “What are you up to, Stark? This feels like a trap.” LOL!

Okay, so here’s why I asked the question in the first place...

It’s pretty common for someone who exclusively offers a hands-on service to resist the idea of packaging their expertise in any other way.

They’d feel like they were cheating their clients by not staying deeply involved throughout an entire engagement and say things like:

Basically, they always want to shepherd the engagement all the way to the finish line.

And that’s admirable!

It probably IS the most effective way to get the client the results they desire.

But it’s also the most expensive.

And people who can’t afford the fancy full-service treatment would probably be happy to learn that there is another option that is in their budget, even if it might not be as effective.

Here’s the thing...

Offering your expertise in a variety of packages - some more effective, some less - isn’t cheating anyone.

It’s the opposite.

You’re increasing your positive impact on the world by making your expertise available to people who couldn’t otherwise afford it.