The 4 Biggest Changes We’re Making to One Mill SchoolMar 03, 2021
This article is a detailed, behind-the-scenes look at One Mill School and some big updates we’re making to the program in Spring 2021. If you’re interested, read on. If you just want a summary, here’s the deal: we’re making some great improvements for this quarter, including a course on hiring help, mastermind-style calls twice per quarter, a pause on Practice Groups, and exclusive access to a stable of Experts and Resources to help members implement their plans.
Someone asked me the other day what success looks like for One Mill School. And I didn’t have to think very long before I told them: my goal is for One Mill School to be transformative in helping creative business owners grow, in their way.
How are we doing on that intention? In many ways, we’re going phenomenally well. For instance, here are some reviews of One Mill School from our members:
"Everything is in bite size pieces. Which makes it easy to move forward in making real progress." - Aisha from Everythine Jewelry
"I love One Mill School. Not only are the classes exceptionally valuable to growing my business but the community and support is second to none. I don't know what I would do without One Mill - it's been a necessity for me over the last year." - Sam from Samantha Slater Studio
We love hearing these reviews.
AND. We wake up every day, excited to do even better. The challenges our members face are very real. Covid has made it very, very hard for many of us, especially if we’re facing childcare issues, abysmal sales, supply or space issues, or one of a hundred other things. Creative business owners don’t need abstract help. They need concrete support to solve these real problems. And they need it in a way that fits their real lives.
Over the last couple of months, we’ve been in a deep-dive process to identify how to make One Mill School even more effective at supporting our members (something we’ll continue doing frequently.) We did dozens of hours of in-depth interviews, surveys to get advice and input, and used a human-centered design process to pull out unexpected insights and connections.
Through this process, we’ve identified some changes and improvements we believe will help us make our intention a little bit more real, vivid, and transformative for the business owners we work with. Below are the changes we’re making for next quarter and some background on each of them.
The Changes We're Making to One Mill School:
New course on hiring help
We kept hearing the same things from the folks we work with:
“I can’t keep doing it all myself but hiring someone seems really scary and risky.”
Honestly, hiring doesn’t have to be scary or risky. But most of the hiring resources available focus on much bigger businesses or only solve one tiny part of the whole hiring process. So we put together a course that covers (almost) every aspect of hiring as a creative business owner. In this course, you’ll identify what help you need, get practical options for hiring flexibly and on a budget, and learn to structure your new teammate’s role in a way that protects you with legal and taxes. We also explore how to hire if you can’t predict your sales, questions about payroll and insurance, stress-free management tools, issues of diversity and inclusion, details on hiring in a Covid world, how to hire if you work from home, and much more.
This course is available for the next quarter of One Mill School -- and like all of our courses, you have full access to one-on-one guidance and coaching by phone and email if you need help with your unique situation.
Revamped collaboration + inspiration
We know it can be lonely and tiring to be a creative business owner sometimes. It’s powerful to get examples, ideas, and collaboration from others. So for the last two quarters of One Mill School, a core part of the program has been our Practice Groups: 3-5 person groups with likeminded business owners. These groups met for 4-5 weeks each quarter and they were semi-facilitated in that we recommended a format (and sometimes popped in) but were mostly self-guided.
We heard some rave reviews from these groups. One member said, “This group is f-ing magic.” And overall, folks got a lot out of these collaborations (several still continue.) That said, we think we can achieve these goals of inspiration, ideas, and collaboration more effectively and more efficiently.
So we’re adding two live Zoom calls with members that will share examples and inspiration, mini case studies of other members, and answer questions. We’ll check in on the material in the courses, illuminate key concepts, and give you even more motivation for what you’re working on. We are planning these calls to be fast-paced, content-rich, and connective. We want to make sure they give you a better sense of community with each other, more richness and inspiration around the course material, a bit more accountability and handholding, and the chance to ask questions and hear questions asked outside of the more intensive format of a coaching or Practice Group call.
We will likely return to having the Practice Groups as an option for those who want it (in a slightly different format) but we’re excited to focus our collaborations on this call format for now.
Insider access to experts + resources
Members are having a lot of insights through their work with One Mill School. Folks are going from overwhelm to clarity. But the step of implementing those ideas can also be a stumbling block.
So we’re making Month 3 of each quarter focus on implementing and making real what you worked on in your Quarterly Course. To support you, we’re adding an in-depth, unsponsored, peer-reviewed Resource Directory to our Quarterly Courses. For instance, if you’re working on Online Marketing and need a comparison of the major email marketing tools, you can click into the Resource Directory and get a straightforward guide, without having to trawl the internet for info.
We’re also organizing a cadre of professionals -- website folks, SEO people, copywriters, etc -- who understand the work you’re doing in One Mill School and have committed to work with members for an affordable rate and clear format. You’ll be able to click over to each expert and set a call, consultation, or engagement with clarity on what they do, how you’d use them, and the range of fees they charge. We want to demystify and de-hassle hiring experts like this and make it easier to make changes in your business once you’re clear on what you need to do.
More guidance, more often
Over the last several months, we’ve experimented with a lot of formats for sharing stories, ideas, examples, and guidance. We created a print Quarterly, ran the Making Do Podcast, and wrote training articles and guides.
This quarter, we’re simplifying and focusing, now that we see what is most helpful to you. We’re focusing on weekly guidance that will complement what you’re doing in your Quarterly Courses. We’ll make sure that at least once a week, you get ideas, tidbits, mini case studies, clarifying examples and the like to help keep you steady, motivated, and clear as the quarter goes on.
And of course we’re continuing:
- 1-on-1 Coaching.
Each quarter, you can sign up for a personal coaching session to talk through ideas and customize your curriculum. Or, you can get in-depth coaching from us via email as you move through your Quarterly Course.
- Quarterly Courses.
You can opt into up to one Course per quarter. Choose from topics like: online marketing, creative resilience, and money matters.
- Community Forum.
24/7 access to inspiring, high-level business owners making a living from their creative business. No Facebook, drama, or fluff.
Applications for the new quarter of One Mill School close on Monday, March 22nd, 2021.
If you are a creative business owner and need support and inspiration in growing your business, we’d love to work with you. You can start your application (no commitment at all) in 30 seconds here -- just make sure to do it now since applications close on March 22nd.
You can find more about how One Mill School works here , join us on Instagram, or read more about the team (as well as our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion at One Mill School) here. Also -- you should know that we offer no-hassle scholarships. If you’re accepted to One Mill School and you need a scholarship, we will give you one (as long as we still have funds left for that quarter.) You’ll just opt in as part of the application process.
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