Yep, you read that title right. Nope, I didn’t confuse the comma for a decimal point.
Linchpin by Seth Godin actually cost me $3,850.
And I happily paid it.
I received it as part of enrolling in Seth Godin’s altMBA program, which I took part in last month.
I went through the 4-week, intensive program on leadership and management, doing things differently, thinking differently and learning new ways to engage and connect with people.
As part of the program, you get shipped a box of books. It’s the most incredible thing – who wouldn’t love that.
If you’re curious what was on the full reading list, comment below, and I’ll share that list with you.
My experience in the altMBA, which is basically a monthlong sprint of a leadership program, was a head scratcher. And head spinner.
It includes 13 writing prompts, 13 small group meetings on Zoom, plus a Slack forum. There’s also a private course website where each lesson is hosted, and where all students post our projects, comment on the projects of others. Basically, you’re interacting with other, for the entire month, a hundred other students and coaches.
And for three and a half weeks of it, I went through kicking and screaming.
The program talks a lot about resistance (as Steven Pressfield calls it), and you could say my resistance came up. But it wasn’t the resistance to doing the work because I did it and I did it well, and I learned from each project shipped.
No, the resistance was to not knowing what was going on.
As you could probably (and very accurately) guess, since I’m all about operations and systems. I also like answers.
I like to know the path where we’re headed.
Since all the lessons are pre-written (they aren’t doing this on the fly), I knew there was a path already carved.
I just wanted to see the map, too.
That’s not how it’s done in the altMBA.
It’s purposefully kept ambiguous so that you can take what you need from each prompt and make meaning where you need to make that meaning.
Even though I logically knew that, I fought it every step of the way.
As an Upholder, I still showed up and went through the process, posted when I was expected to post, interacted with and connected with fellow students when I was expected to as well.
But my internal expectations, just threw up her hands and said, “I don’t get what’s going on.”
Then, it all started to come together. In the final, magical week.
My learning group for the last four prompts were so supportive and kind and caring.
And the prompts started to start link to one another in a more obvious way. I could see the common theme. I could see how one was building on the other on the other on the other.
That’s where it all clicked into place.
I kept a daily journal through and when I read it back, I could see a hunch starting to bubble up. And I would tell my husband about it. And I would tell friends and fellow coaches my thought as well.
The program is like “The Karate Kid”, where we’re learning to “paint the fence” or “wax on, wax off”, which seems to have no relation to the martial arts.
But the movements become so ingrained that when it comes time for battle, instinctively, we just know what to do.
The not-knowing process, I did’t like it. “I’m not enjoying it. I’m still going to do it,” was my standard response when friends asked how the program was going.
I’m thrilled I stuck with it.
Because it all came together.
I can clearly see what we learned.
I have new tools and resources that are part of of my toolkit as a coach and professional.
The biggest lesson learned: Trust, in other people and myself.
The program does it in such a way that you don’t realize it’s happening, and sometimes that’s really the goal because it bypasses the resistance.
You don’t know what’s happening while it’s happening.
That’s really the magic of the altMBA.
(That and a box of boxes for us reading nerds out there.)
The application window is open for the next session of the program. Interested? Apply here.
Have a question or two about enrolling? Leave a note and ask away – I’m happy to talk with you about my experience.
Photo by Austin Ban on Unsplash