Every week on LinkedIn and in my social DMs, I get people asking me how they can leave their job and go and work somewhere else or how they can found and grow their own business.
So I wanted to do a deep dive into exactly what I did to gain my first a hundred thousand dollars while I was still working as a medical student. I'm gonna give you the exact tactics that I used so that you can apply this, whether you are working in healthcare or in any career at the moment, that will help you to transition to a new career or to start up your own venture.
This is gonna be a real beginner's guide, but there will be some advanced topics towards the end but before we get into those key tactics, I want to spend a little bit of time focusing on mindset, because that's often the bit that people get stuck with.
Are you looking for ways to make money online but feel guilty or unsure about selling your services? As a former doctor, I can relate to this feeling, but I'm here to tell you that making money online is not only okay, it's a smart move for your financial and mental well-being.
When I first started exploring ways to make money online, I read a book called "The E-Myth" that taught me the importance of creating systems and processes early on so that I could enjoy my life now, rather than waiting until retirement. This mindset shift allowed me to start thinking about ways to create a side hustle that could eventually lead to financial freedom.
But first, I had to overcome the mental blocker that many of us have about selling something online. As a doctor, I felt like it was almost illegal to make money outside of my day job. However, I learned that looking after my own finances was essential to my overall well-being, and that charging for my services was not a bad thing, as long as I was providing value to my customers.
So how do you get started on your journey to making your first $100k online? First, you need to identify your skills and the value they can offer to others. This can be done by working for free or sharing your expertise online to get feedback from potential customers.
Once you have identified your skills and the value you can offer, it's time to start monetizing your services. Whether you're offering a remote online course, a SaaS product, or a service-based business, you need to respect your time and charge for your services accordingly. Remember, you are helping people solve their problems, and you deserve to be compensated for your time and expertise.
Making money online can be a game-changer for your financial future and your mental well-being. So don't be afraid to start exploring your options and taking the steps necessary to create a profitable online business. With the right mindset and approach, you can make your first $100k online and enjoy the benefits of financial freedom.
When I was transitioning to a completely new career and wanted to start a business, I realized that humility was one of the most important skills that I could have. Even though I had spent seven years working as a research scientist, the skills I had built up over that time might not be directly transferable to my new venture.
Although I had developed skills like problem-solving, critical thinking, and attention to detail, I knew that starting a new business would require a completely different set of skills. My best piece of advice for anyone in a similar situation is to do what I did and go intern for free at a company that interests you or that you would like to work for in the future.
I love technology and wanted to build a SaaS product, so I researched which companies in my city were being funded by investors and the local university. I found one company that was creating an e-learning platform for doctors and was growing really quickly. It had been founded in the local university incubator by a team of doctors who acted as mentors.
I reached out to the team behind the company and offered my services for free. Although my services weren't particularly expansive at the time, I was able to help with odd jobs like creating help materials for their SaaS product, promoting it on social media, and assisting with sales. With my background in science, I learned a lot about how tech startups work, marketing, and team-building.
By being very helpful with my spare time and generous with my efforts, I was given more and more responsibility in the company. Eventually, they paid me when I was in my first year as a junior doctor. I'm glad I was able to gain valuable experience while contributing to the company's growth, and I believe that anyone starting a new venture can benefit from being humble and willing to learn from others.
The Fastest Way To Learn
One of the things that I always tell people who ask me about transitioning to a new role or starting a business is that interning is incredibly valuable.
When I was just starting out, I reached out to my local university innovation department to find companies that I was interested in and that I wanted to learn from. In my case, I was interested in technology and wanted to build a SaaS product, so I found a company that was creating an e-learning platform for doctors in my local hospital that was growing quickly. I offered my services for free and was able to learn an incredible amount about how tech startups work, marketing, team building, and more.
By being generous with my time and skills, I was eventually given more responsibility in the company and was even paid in my first year as a junior doctor. If you're just starting out like I was, interning is the best way to get practical, insider information and knowledge about how you should structure your own company.
But if you're a little further along in your career, you might want to look for open roles at companies that mirror the types of companies you want to work for or start conversations with their founders to get your name and CV on file for future positions. One thing to keep in mind if you're going for a job at an early stage company is to focus on equity rather than salary.
This can align you to the outcome and lifespan of the company and potentially offer higher rewards if the company grows in valuation. I have a friend who worked for a prescription startup and received equity in the company. When it was sold three years later, he had a sweet pay packet and had learned a lot along the way, which helped him get a higher paid job in another company in a similar sector when that company was finished.
Level Up Your Skills For Free
As someone who has gone through the process of learning new skills and transitioning to a new role, I always recommend practical experience as the best way to learn. If you're looking to transition to a new field or work for a specific type of company, interning or working for a similar company is the fastest and most effective way to gain insider knowledge.
However, there are also other ways to learn and immerse yourself in the field. One thing I always suggest is to consume as much information as possible through podcasts, blogs, newsletters, YouTube channels, and any other resources relevant to the field you're interested in. This will help you to learn more quickly and stay up to date with the latest industry trends and best practices.
When I was first starting out in business, I bought a ton of books and focused on the key chapters that were most relevant to my work at the time. For example, when I was working on customer service and creating health materials, I focused on reading books about customer service and creating engaging content.
As my role in the company evolved, I taught myself new skills like website design and coding. I started with basic tools like WordPress and eventually moved on to more advanced tools like Webflow. This not only helped me to become more creative, but it also helped me to communicate more effectively with developers and understand the mechanics of building technology businesses.
Overall, the key is to immerse yourself in the field, learn as much as you can, and gain practical experience wherever possible. This will help you to become more valuable to the company you're working with and set you up for success in the future.
Share Your Journey
When I began my journey of learning a new skill, whether it was through interning at a new company or just reading and learning something in general, I realized that building an audience was incredibly important. Whether I was starting a new job or building my own business, my audience was my potential customer base, and I needed to deeply understand their problems in order to help them.
At first, I thought I wasn't an expert and didn't know what I should share. I felt that my opinions and thoughts weren't relevant to anyone, but that was completely untrue. As I began learning, I found that there were people ahead of me, at the same stage, and behind me on the path to mastery. Those who were behind me and looking to be in my position in six or twelve months' time were often the people who needed my help the most.
So, regardless of whether I was an expert or not, I started sharing my journey. This helped me build an audience and also helped me consolidate my thoughts and become a better teacher. Sharing my journey helped me learn and summarize everything I had been through up until that point.
As a doctor, I thought about what I could give back and how I could help others. I had always been good at interviews and exams in medicine, not because I was particularly smart or knew the topics better than anyone else, but because of my mindset and systems that I set up to be successful. So, I started sharing my notes online to help others with interview practice and exam preparation.
When I first started, my web development skills were terrible, but I still created a website to share my notes. The first website I built was pretty appalling, but it wasn't appalling enough to put people off downloading some of the content. If you have valuable content, people will go after it.
I also started learning about search engine optimization and began writing a blog post every single day targeted at my specific audience. I provided articles that were exponentially helpful to people who were revising for interviews or entering medical school or sitting things like the UKCAT. I gave away a lot of my knowledge for free by blogging online and posting it on the website that I created.
Today, there are even more options for sharing content, such as YouTube videos or social media posts. By sharing my work with my followers and growing an audience, I was able to optimize what I was going to sell and offer people. This helped me avoid the problem of building a product before knowing whether there was demand for it. It's much better to understand your audience's needs deeply and then build something that's really relevant to them, so you know they're going to pay for it because it solves a problem for them.
After starting my website and building an audience through blogging, I knew it was time to create an offer page and test whether my product would resonate with my audience. I used my web development skills to create a one-page landing page that explained the details of my offer.
The offer was a set of practice interview questions and online question banks that people could access at any time. I realized that having a compelling offer that clearly communicates the value of the product is crucial, regardless of the type of business. The landing page I created was simple, with only about 800 words of text explaining what the product was and why it was important.
At the end of the page, there was a button connected to Stripe and PayPal that allowed people to sign up and access the product immediately. The landing page was built using a simple membership site that I created. It doesn't have to be complicated, but it does have to be effective in communicating the value of your product or service.
Do Things That Don't Scale
While building my online business, I found that blogging, SEO, and scaling my online course system were great strategies, but I also realized that there were a couple of other key tactics that could help me scale my business to my first hundred thousand dollars. One of the strategies that Paul Graham, the founder of Y Combinator, suggests for anyone creating any type of product or SaaS business is to do things that don't scale initially. This helps you to understand your customer's needs and to iterate your product.
So, the first thing I did was to do lots and lots of talks, in-person workshops, and conferences around different medical schools or deans. Even though this was pretty unscalable, it allowed me to speak directly to people and connect with them face-to-face. It gave me a huge amount of insight into people's problems and their needs, which led to some ideas around the problems that they were having with current products out there on the market or with the exams or interviews themselves.
Another difficult-to-scale thing that I did was to make sure that the products I was selling were as good as they possibly could be. I spent a lot of time breaking down and understanding what good interview technique was and what good exam preparation meant. I reverse-engineered everything that I did and that high-scoring candidates did to make sure that this was teachable to people and that the feedback from everyone going through any of my products or services was as good as it possibly could be.
This helped me to make the product amazing and to scale the business by word of mouth and getting testimonials back from early customers. This gave us a huge market share early on and allowed me to capture as many people as possible into the whole ecosystem of what we were doing and really help as many people prepare as possible.
As soon as people started saying that they utilized this product and it helped them get their first-choice job, or it helped them pass their exam the first time, and it saved them this amount of money, everybody else wanted to come and do exactly the same. This is often the best way to get early customers by word of mouth. If you can optimize your product and really capture that zeitgeist and get people recommending you, it's the best and most affordable way to scale whatever it is you're selling.