Love your job? Hate your job?
Chances are, there's something you learnt from your time at work.
What if you could PROFIT from what you learnt at work?
This story is about a man who picked up skills at work, and turned it into a business for himself.
About this Site
If you work in an office environment, chances are, you'll need to use Microsoft Excel for your work, in big or small ways.
John created My Excel Online, a site dedicated to improving the lives of people who need to use Excel in their every day.
Startup Story (John's words)
I started an internal Excel blog at my previous company (General Electric) and I was sharing weekly Excel Tips.
After 1 year I had 10,000 followers. I thought that if I can create an online course for them then I can sell it to them. It also validated that there is a market for teaching Excel. There are 800 million users and less than 5% use it to its full potential.
I saw that other Excel course were not in depth and did not have the quality & standard that I aspire to…these same course instructors were making a killing.
So I decided to raise the bar.
I worked the next 12 months at night time to create my first course – Xtreme Pivot Tables.
I then went to sell it to GE and compliance told me that I can't do it, so I sold it to the general public. Fellow Excel bloggers helped to promote it to their list initially.
I made a few hundred dollars in the first month and then doubles the sales month after month. The webinar helped.
Blog offering free online excel help
John provides a wealth of free help relating to Microsoft Excel on his blog.
As you can see on his blog here, he shares with nugget of excel tips, and describes how one goes about in using it.
If you were searching online for excel tips, there's a good chance that you'll land on one of his blogposts.
Free Podcast with Excel Experts
Instead of relying on his own expertise with Microsoft Excel, he even connects with a panel of other Excel experts through his free podcast.
He also hosts regular free excel training webinars to teach people about pivot tables, excel formulae etc.
Talk about dedication!
How it Makes Money
If John is providing all these tips for free, how does he earn money?
The good news is, once people saw that John was an authority in providing excel help, and they needed a one-stop place to improve their excel, instead of finding bits and pieces of excel tips online, they signed up for his online courses instead.
How It Is Doing
One thing is for sure, John was able to make "enough" to quit his day job.
And from my interactions with him, he said he is now earning 4 times what he was doing in his day job at GE.
And the cool thing is, he now has the "freedom" to live anyway, and is now living with his wife in Spain.
In terms of traffic on his site, he draws estimated 58,600 visits per month.
The U.S. makes up 1/3 of his visitors. Other significant countries are the UK, Canada, India and South Africa.
Quote from John:
As soon as I had a 6 month track record of sales I quit my job (my wife allowed me to quit 🙂 and here I am 2 years later, making 4 times what I was at GE, going to the gym, playing golf and doing what I love best…teaching!
Favourite quote that helped me get through the 12 months of recording my 1st course:
Never give up on a dream because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.
Love John and MyExcelOnline? Like his Facebook Page here:
My Biggest Takeaways...
My mind is really blown when I think about what John has done here, given that I consider myself to be an advanced user of excel, and I live and breathe excel in my every day work life.
The fact that he was able to use his technical skills learnt at work and profit immensely from it, is a huge inspiration to me.
I learnt never to underestimate what skills you have, and that people out there may resonate and pay for the skills and training that you offer, especially in an online medium.
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