Last Month’s Earnings


The Smart Passive Income Podcast

AP 1038: How Can I Create an Online Business When Time Management Is Difficult?

AP 1038: How Can I Create an Online Business When Time Management Is Difficult?

By Pat Flynn on

About This Episode

Today I’m coaching Roger. He’s a woodworker and, as of recently, an empty-nester. He wants to create passive income through his woodworking business and get away from the physical side of things, but business is good and his time is limited. How can he maximize the time he does have and make headway with an online business?

This is kind of a short one, but I’ll be checking back with Roger’s progress again in the near future. I’ll update this post with the link to that episode so you can follow along with Roger’s journey!

We begin the coaching session by discussing Roger’s efforts so far and identifying the various content he wants to create for his business. From there I give Roger ideas for maximizing his time through tools like Rev (a transcription service), and Roger and I make plans to touch base again soon in the future. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]

What You’ll Learn:
Learn about tools and strategies you can use to streamline content creation for your business.

AskPat 1038 Episode Transcript

Full Transcript Expand to view full transcript Compress to smaller transcript view

Pat Flynn: What’s up everybody? Pat Flynn here and welcome to Episode 1038 of AskPat 2.0. What you’re about to listen to is a coaching call between myself and a future entrepreneur named Roger who has a lot of questions about what his next steps should be. I’ll introduce him more in a minute, but before that, if you haven’t listened to the show before make sure you hit subscribe because what you’re about to listen to is an actual, real-life coaching call where Roger and I are gonna chat. He’s going through some stuff and I’m gonna help him and hopefully help you at the same time, too. So make sure you hit subscribe if you haven’t already.

I do also want to give a big shout out to FreshBooks, the sponsor for the show this year. It’s really amazing, an amazingly supportive company and just an amazing piece of software to help you manage your business finances. It doesn’t matter what level you’re at, you need to manage your business finances so that you can reduce all those kinds of headaches that can come your way if you don’t get those things organized up front. So, keeping track of your income—obvious thing. Keeping track of your expenses—well, duh. They can actually automatically do that. They can connect your credit card and it just kind of happens seamlessly. But also keeping track of your invoices and creating requests for proposals (RFPs) and those kinds of things to help you just manage your business. All the things related to finance in your business, FreshBooks is there to help you.

What’s really cool is they’re offering a thirty-day free trial to get access to their software. And yes, I use it myself, too, especially for the invoicing stuff and keeping track and bookkeeping and whatnot. If you want to check it out for thirty days for free, all you have to do is go to and just make sure you enter “Ask Pat” in the “How did you hear about us?” section.

Okay, cool. So, Roger. Roger is a empty nester. He’s an older man who has been doing a lot of woodworking for a while. Kids are out of the house and he’s looking to take a lot of his expertise in the woodworking space and turn it into a business somehow, so we kind of talk through that process. Now, when you hear the recording, we actually just pick up right away and he starts talking about his history with woodworking. He was just so anxious to get started—right when we got on Skype, boom, we were going. So it picks up like right in the middle of a sentence. Just don’t worry about that, you’ll get the gist of who Roger is. Such a sweet guy and I cannot wait to follow up with him in the future because he’s got a lot of cool stuff going on. So, let’s just dive right in. Here’s Roger, and let’s do it.

Roger: . . . woodworking professionally for, let’s see, sixteen years now.

Pat Flynn: Wow.

Roger: I had spent fifteen years in retail, got out of that to basically be kind of a stay at home dad. Two kids, wife had a really good job that she enjoyed. They’re pretty much gone. The oldest is out of the house, the youngest is still here but she takes care of herself. I’m just kind of at a point—I’m probably older than your average listener, and so I’m kind of at a point of, to be quite honest, getting a little tired of the physical labor and looking a little bit more towards passive income possibilities. I have several ideas. Very often, sometimes, my ideas are not the greatest, so I appreciate the opportunity to run these by someone like yourself who’s experienced in this arena.

Pat Flynn: Yeah, well, I’m happy to be here to help you, Roger. I’d love to know, what are some of these ideas that you’ve been playing around with?

Roger: Probably the first one, which I’ve certainly dabbled in, is writing a book on working at woodworking. Woodworking is both a profession for a lot of people, but probably for me people it’s a hobby. And so there’s a ton of people out there, everything from retired doctors, lawyers, Indian chiefs, who are now at home driving their wife crazy, they need to do something. Maybe young men, young women, perhaps just kind of dissatisfied with corporate life. “There’s gotta be something better than eighty-hour workweeks and putting up with people I don’t like and how would I go about transitioning?” Or, “I just want more information about what this would be like.”

Pat Flynn: Right.

Roger: There’s several books that I had read when I was in retail that inspired me to make this leap whenever the opportunity came along. Also, in my older years I’m realizing that there’s a lot of people who are doing a lot of work who, either they’re not quite as smart or as experienced as they think they are, or I kind of undervalue my experience.

Pat Flynn: A book is a great thing, obviously, because it’s a way to package this knowledge that you have. Having a number of years of experience, this could be a very valuable thing for people, especially in that transitional period in their life or wanting to do more than what they’re currently doing. Personally I think that’s a great idea. You said you’ve dabbled in it a little bit. I’d love to know, what do you mean by dabbling?

Roger: I’m a forever learner. There is one particular online course that I’ve taken for, jeez, twenty-five years now, I’ve taken courses on there, literally since the internet’s been around. I thought, “Wouldn’t it be cool if I created an online course addressing this exact thing?” Well, that company seems to be kind of fuzzing out a little bit and so I was basically writing, not with a particular form in mind, but just getting words down on paper, or down on a computer screen.

Pat Flynn: Sure.

Roger: Then it can be massaged and it can be rearranged and working. So I’ve got, oh, I don’t know, several chapters outlined and some rough sketches. When I get inspired or if I learn something brand new I’ll get the bug and I’ll go in and I’ll sit down and I’ll write for thirty, forty-five minutes. It’s not like I’m starting from scratch; there is something there. But do I do a book, do I self-publish, do I try to find a publisher, do I turn this into an online course? Could it be turned into a podcast? Is YouTube something that could be used here? I’m kind of paralyzed. Paralysis through analysis.

Pat Flynn: Yeah, this is a very common theme for guests who are on the show, actually. I’ve done five interviews today—three of them have mentioned the exact same thing.

Roger: Oh my.

Pat Flynn: Too many ideas.

Roger: Is that right?

Pat Flynn: Not sure what to do first, and I’m not doing anything. What’s really cool about all the ideas that you mentioned, Roger, were that they do all play with each other, which is really nice. They could all be there. I think a lot of people see what I do; I do all those things. I have a book, I have a podcast, I have a YouTube channel, I write a blog. And then people go, “Okay, well, I want to do that, too.” But you can’t. There’s no way you could do all of them at the same time.

When they all play in and around the same thing, which is your passion here for woodworking and the wanting to help others, then the kind of cool thing is it really becomes your own choice. You just have to make that choice and commit to it or else nothing’s ever gonna get done. There’s a lot of options, like you said, and what’s cool is one can then lead into the other. For example, you could have a book that then gets . . . and you’ve kind of hinted at this already—it becomes, perhaps, something like an online course. It would be a lot of the same material, but it would likely be described in a different way or through different means. Whether it’s video or through downloadables or something, it’s just taking this book that’s offline and putting it online. That’s just a different experience.

A lot of people who bought my book, Will It Fly?, have now taken my online course to learn, essentially, the exact same thing but in a deeper way, in an online format. So they can go from one to the next, so you could potentially, at this point, just choose whichever you feel that you would be most interested in, that you feel like you would have the most energy for and also would be the easiest. Now, I did read in your notes that you sent me that you actually don’t like to write very much, or that you prefer to not write, it just takes a long time. I feel the same way too, which is why I podcast and do videos and stuff. Is that still true, related to this book?

Roger: To be honest with you, in my little older age, I kind of forget what I mentioned or wrote to you.

Pat Flynn: Yeah, no, it’s been a while. It’s been a while, but you had said that you prefer to do other things than just write all day.

Roger: The other factor is that business is good and I’m booked out for several months, so it’s a time management issue also.

Pat Flynn: Right.

Roger: I’m certainly not opposed to writing, and the more I’ve been thinking about it, if I do an online course, I have to write it. If I do a book, I have to write it. If I do a blog, I have to write it. If I do a podcast, well, yeah, I kind of have to at least have a really good outline, you know, that I have to write. I’m not horribly opposed to writing.

Pat Flynn: Okay. I just wanted to clear that up but, okay. It’s funny because, yes, you definitely need a good outline for a podcast and you need a good outline for an online course, you need a good outline for a book.

But here’s the cool thing, Roger, you don’t actually have to physically write it yourself. I don’t mean having somebody else pretend to be you and ghostwrite the whole thing. I’m actually doing this with my current book that I’m working on: I’m having a person interview me and ask me a bunch of questions and, in my own voice, with my own words, those answers are being recorded and that is what’s gonna be inserted, itself, into the book. So I’m not actually, quote, writing it. I’m actually dictating it with my voice. I prefer to talk and that’s just a lot easier for me to do, and that’s a great way to get around the labor of writing it. You could even talk through it while doing other things. I’ve done a lot of the talking for my next book while driving in a car with the—

Roger: Really?

Pat Flynn: Yeah. I just have the headset on and I’m talking through the book and I’m just kind of, stream of consciousness, telling stories and sharing things that I know. Then I’m gonna give that to somebody to then take that, again in my own voice, and turn it into a book. I’m confident that it’s fully me because those are my answers.

Roger: Right.

Pat Flynn: So that could be a fun way to, with the time that you have available to you, to write the book without actually having to write it.

Roger: There’s some software . . . oh, shoot. Dragon speaking, or something like that. It was really, really old.

Pat Flynn: Yes.

Roger: But is there some software that will basically do dictation?

Pat Flynn: There is software, and that one actually still is around and it’s gotten a lot better over the years, but I still don’t prefer it because I find I have to correct the incorrections more than if I were to just write it myself.

Roger: Right.

Pat Flynn: So what I use now is an app on my phone. It’s available for iOS or for Android and it’s called Rev. I hit record and then I say whatever I need to say, and then I press stop. And there’s a button right there that says, “Would you like to transcribe this?” So I hit transcribe and in 48 hours, in my email, I’ll have a whole word document of everything that I had just said. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]

Roger: Oh, wow.

Pat Flynn: It’s actually transcribed by a real human being, and I’ve found it to be 99.99 percent accurate.

Roger: Wow.

Pat Flynn: It’s not as cheap as investing in a software that’s a one time payment and then it does it all for you, but it’s $1 per minute. To me that’s worth my time because I can dictate at like 500 words per minute versus writing sometimes 30 words per minute because I’m just so in my own head. Part of the writing process too is hard because you’re almost editing as you go.

But when you’re speaking, you’re just speaking and it’s more you. If you want to put more of yourself in this book, I find that’s the way to go. Rev is the tool, and that could be an interesting solution to just get things going. That then could turn into any of those things. Those dictations can be individual YouTube videos, should you choose to go down that route. They could be individual podcast episodes. They could be the entire course that you lay out and, also, your book. [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]

The book, to me, is the most interesting especially with somebody at your age. I feel like that’s the best way to leave a legacy, is through a book that somebody can hold in their hands. I have information on my website about self-publish versus traditionally published, but I like self-publish because you have more control. And you can actually get a publishing deal after you self-publish, if it goes well and it’s proven to be interesting. I feel like trying to keep things as simple as possible and one step at a time, I feel like we just need to get all this information that’s in your brain and the experience that you’ve had on paper somehow, and maybe it’s through Rev. And then you can see what you can do with it after.

Roger: Okay. That’s a really good suggestion.

Pat Flynn: Does that feel good to you?

Roger: Yeah, yeah.

Pat Flynn: I feel like we don’t even need to really talk about next steps until we get to that point, so I would love to get back on a call with you, Roger. I know we’re cutting this a little bit short because we had some technical issues getting started here, which is okay.

Roger: Right.

Pat Flynn: I let everybody know about that who’s listening to this right now, ahead of time. Why don’t we make another appointment at some point in the future to get you back on and perhaps you can tell me how it’s been going, or even if you hadn’t gone through it yet, maybe we can talk about, okay, well, where might we find time to actually make this happen? And then we can take the next steps and maybe have you on as a recurring role here on AskPat, to have people follow along. Does that sound good to you?

Roger: Yeah, that sounds good. Can you give me a deadline?

Pat Flynn: Ooh, see . . . man, you got the experience. You know that you need a deadline to get this done, right?

Roger: Yeah.

Pat Flynn: I love it. Why don’t we chat in a . . . I just want you to at least get started with this process. You don’t have to have the whole thing finished by then, but I would love to, in about a month’s time . . . a month after recording this, get back on a call with you to check in and just see how things are going, if that’s okay. So, at least having gotten started with the dictation thing so you can get familiar with it and just see if that’s something you want to do. Try a couple first and get it back and see if it’s to your liking before doing the whole thing, to see if, “Yes, this is the direction I want to go down.” And then let’s say by . . . let’s see, today is August 30th. Why not by October 1st, we’ll see if we can get on a call and just catch up?

Roger: Okay.

Pat Flynn: Does that sound good?

Roger: That sounds wonderful.

Pat Flynn: Cool. Roger, you’re amazing. I’m really excited for this and I know everybody will be, too. We’ll catch up with you again. I’ll record it and we’ll have this become like a little series, I guess.

Roger: Oh, this is way cool.

Pat Flynn: Cool. Thank you for that. I’m gonna hit close on this recording and then you and I will just chat for another couple of minutes, if that’s okay.

Roger: Okay. Very good.

Pat Flynn: One second . . .

All right, I hope you enjoyed that quick interview with Roger. Again, our connection was a little bit bad so we didn’t have much time. We’re definitely gonna follow up in the future because I think there’s a lot of fun things that we could learn through this journey with Roger.

I’d love to know what you think. Hit me up on Twitter, @PatFlynn, if you want to hear from Roger and we should do more of these kinds of things. Make sure you hit subscribe if you haven’t already.

Now, obviously, you can go to and hear all the other episodes there, or you can just go into the archive in your favorite podcasting app and listen there as well. But if you do go to, that’s where you have a chance to click on a button to apply to get coaching just like Roger did today. We’ve done thousands—or at least over a thousand of these—and I cannot wait to hopefully get to yours as well. I can’t choose everybody because there’s so many that come in every single day, but I handpick these every single month and choose ones that I feel are gonna be helpful for you. Hopefully this one was as well. Roger, best of luck to you.

Thank you again for listening to AskPat everybody, and make sure you hit subscribe if you haven’t already. ‘Til next time, take care, take action, and we’ll see you soon. Bye.

Let's figure out what works!

Join 150,000+ active members in the SPI community

Email address required
No thanks, I'll pass for now :)
  1. 1. Free Stuff

    You'll get instant access to free resources, including my most popular book, Ebooks the Smart Way! (Downloaded over 125,000 times!)

  2. 2. Content Tailored to You

    Over time, I'll get to learn more about you and deliver content that actually matters.

  3. 3. No Hype

    Just real content that's meant to make a difference.