Digital Dawn

Will Schneller explores the intersection of design, technology, and entrepreneurship. After an epic opening moment on the mic, Ben and Will talk about building within education, signals to consider if/when/what to quit, wallets in web3, zero knowledge proofs, and provenance.

After the break, Will expands on what he wrote in Non-Fungible Fabric, by talking through the endless depth that NFTs deliver. We take a pit stop to discuss the unmatched energy of accelerating others, the connections we’ve unlocked through the Roasted Reflections NFT Collection, and finish by adding a zero to whatever you’re building.

Enjoy this Episode
YDNTP on APPLE PODCASTS
YDNTP on SPOTIFY

Tokenomics

Joshua Larson is a video game developer, AI fashion designer, and web3 founder. We load in with Joshua’s experience building inside the Bitcoin Startup Lab, which has us talking about startup accelerators, pivoting, and tokenomics.. We then rewind to hear how he hacked his way into video game development, and here are a few games he helped to ship.

After the break, we blast through digital artifacts that are ordinals on-chain, generative AI, prompt engineering, #ChatUX, decentralized computing, and the 5 main layers within blockchain technologies. We close things down with a humbling 1-2-3 exercise, before Joshua drops the mic with perseverance.

Enjoy this Episode
YDNTP on APPLE PODCASTS
YDNTP on SPOTIFY

Power of Purpose

Dwana Bradley builds relationships. Her team at Iowa Urban Media tells stories through the Urban Experience Magazine and her leadership with Iowa Juneteenth is felt year-round.

Together, we celebrate love and Black History Month, by dancing with purpose-driven initiatives, the uninterrupted power of print, prompt engineering through societal biases, and the peace that awaits all who build toward their own state of career nirvana.

Enjoy this Episode
YDNTP on APPLE PODCASTS
YDNTP on SPOTIFY

PolyOmega

Roasted Reflections is a collection
of writings I’ll be proud of forever
and this is the finishing touch…

As I think back, I was never much into reading or writing. I did what was required to play the game of school. Back in 2004, after earning a computer science degree from Loras College and as I started building my career, countless website proposals and client emails had to be where my proficiency with creative writing started to form. This was when the Internet was new, so every business owner began to realize they needed a decent website, even if they didn’t know why. My ability to translate nerd to normal (and normal back to nerd), helped me collaborate with leaders in countless industries. Hearing how people built their companies and helping to compile stories made content creation an indirect, but ongoing element to my early practice.

Writing was also important in my entrepreneurial ventures. It helped me launch The Iowa 3v3 Soccer Challenge and then a global social network for video game enthusiasts. The amount of content I forged into Gathering of Gamers and Tournament Seeker was epic. When I retired from web development after 8 years and  $1M+ in sales, a multimedia marketing move into home building also had me creating a castle of content and with each new side hustle, more words were always required. For instance, I designed everything on FliteBrite, OpenOpen, and Chatty, just to name a few.

I stretch back into the past, because it reveals how writing is fundamental to modern communication. AI and ChatUX is transforming how it’s done, but content creation has enhanced my career in digital marketing and has fueled all of my innovative aspirations. Along with articulating ideas in compelling ways, my writing has been focused on entrepreneurship for a long time. My own creative seasons have been enlightening, but all that I’ve learned from leaders like you, has been monumental in understanding the entrepreneurial lifestyle. Along with career nirvana for myself, I’ve seen how building a business activates an abundance of lasting purpose, shared motivation, and personal growth!

Alright, fast forward to January 1, 2020.

As I started writing my first book by copying the Table of Contents into a blank document, there was never a doubt I could articulate deep understandings into tight spaces. From start to finish, writing You Don’t Need This Book and building Pour Over Publishing to support the publishing process took 1.25 years. Toward the end of this journey, it became clear that BenMcDougal.com needed to be a more prominent place. Thanks to a lifetime of building online, as my personal website came together, I had a stockpile of content. Along with everything on different websites and throughout social media, I had crafted (37,456 words) for YDNTB, which delivered a wonderful well of my very best writing.

Extending my book with a blog was not the original plan. It felt important to make my website shine, but I had never published art on such a rigid timeline. Seth Godin suggests we ship art every day, so while I considered a daily blog, I had to be realistic. Everything I write about are relics for people who mean the world to many, so delivering on a promise was my only option. As I considered how often to publish new articles, feedback kept me grounded and I’m glad I chose to pursue a weekly cadence.

Over time, RoastedReflections.com has become a treasured library. Each writing is a chemical reaction. I thought deeply and challenged myself to write less, but to mean more. The challenge of compressing countless characters also led to many short titles. While my titles may not be obvious for first-time readers, I appreciate the allure of such mystique. Short titles deliver a punch and I’ve enjoyed forcing big ideas into tiny titles.

The organization of this library will continue to pay dividends as well. There are countless links between all 160+ writings. Primary categories kept me focused on timely/evergreen value for the right audience, while topic-based tags were applied for more precise exploration. Thoughtfully associating a unique emoji to each writing was fun as well.

Extra Shot

Listen to WHY I build.

What started as a marketing engine for my first book, soon became a part of my routine. Knowing an email would automatically pull from my blog every Wednesday morning, meant I needed to meet my deadline every week. The occasional glitch had me scrambling once in awhile, but I never missed a week. Such consistency required sacrifice, but significant learning was experienced along the way.

I learned how reading helps us understand the world, while writing helps us understand ourselves. I learned to feel when it was time to find direction. I learned to appreciate the release of articulating something everyone was going to see. As distribution channels grew, I learned how to counter the feelings of self-righteousness. I learned a lot of new words and that it usually took more than one pass to get each writing perfect. I learned the value of indexing my thoughts. I learned how writing helps improve the way we listen and speak. I learned that when we create something we’re proud of, external validation becomes inconsequential. I learned more about how generosity builds trust and what it means to be an author.

There are more takeaways, but it’s clear why I encourage everyone to write. If you’re afraid to write in public, start by journalling in private, but know this has layers of unrealized potential. Writing helps us organize, execute, and release ideas, but it’s not “art” until it connects with those we seek to serve. The best of intentions mean nothing until we ship it.

Extra Shot

“Change is inevitable.
Don’t fall in love with a medium.
Fall in love with the mission.” -Seth Godin

I’ve shipped my art and RoastedReflections.com will live on to nourish leaders who make a ruckus by fueling positive change in our connected era.

This may be the end to an epic streak, but the title of this closing chapter (PolyOmega) reminds us that endings are a beginning to what’s next.

I’ll continue to lead by speaking nationwide, over 5,000 copies of You Don’t Need This Book have been sold, You Don’t Need This Podcast is in full-effect, BEN BOT is online, fellow leaders are collaborating on Discord, community events are happening, and ecosystems are evolving.

Cheers to all who make work look like play and as we each pursue career nirvana, let’s keep building and stay connected in all that we do

Let’s Get Phygital

Sachin Sehgal found lasting purpose by starting his first business at the University of Iowa. Along with all that is multimedia marketing, Sachin is building Elevate and Bond Branding as he continues to explore connections between our physical and digital worlds.

You’ll love these shared wavelengths on customer discovery, content creation, value-based sales, balancing personal brands, activating phygital concepts, when to quit, spirit animals, truth-based prompt engineering with AI, collectability with web3 technologies, and playing long-term games with long-term people. As Sachin reminds us, when life gives us stories, tell them.

YDNTP on APPLE PODCASTS
YDNTP on SPOTIFY