Last week I discussed eventual reciprocity
and the idea that accumulating helpful “pieces” that compound is the key to building trust and gently pushing people to give support in return. Today, I thought some more about this.
Each article and book that I’ve published between 2019 and 2020 has contributed a lot to my visibility in developer communities. Although each time I published a new piece, I felt like screaming in the void. I hoped for overnight success and was often left with the sound of crickets. I thought I was doing it all wrong. But I kept writing and publishing. Over time, the effects started amplifying. I started getting revenue out of my articles on Medium, and slowly increased my reach.
But beyond the audience and the direct revenue, the biggest impact of writing those articles and books is on my reputation. I keep receiving offers from startups and companies looking for experts.
Each of my articles acts as a Proof of Work (PoW)
. Just like with cryptographic proofs
used by cryptocurrencies. Each article showcases my experience on a specific topic/problem and proves that I’ve done my homework. It goes a long way to establish me as an expert on the topics I’m covering.
Of course, experience is a spectrum, but after publishing 20+ articles on a topic, including in-depth ones
, it becomes obvious that I can’t be a rookie anymore.
The compounding effect comes with time and accumulation. The more pieces about a given topic, the more proofs of work and the stronger the effect.
I witnessed this first while writing about software development and Web development. It helped me generate more and more passive income, but also helped me land freelancing contracts (including the one I’ve just signed).
I’m now doing it again with Personal Knowledge Management
. But this time around, I have lower expectations for each individual article. I focus on accumulating Proofs of Work and will let the compounding effect do its magic.
In reality, the effect is already noticeable. I’ve been invited to participate in an online summit about PKM, given the idea to organize one myself, and managed to sell info products in the PKM space already. And this is quite telling because last year, nobody even knew I was interested in information management and PKM!
And the same goes with this newsletter. Each edition adds more weight to the balance.
So, what are you waiting for?. Go create your own proofs of work!