Couple More Days of “Mini Mastermind”? (Lockdown)

In now by Michael Michelini

What Mike Michelini is up to Now – March 6 – 12, 2022

Listen as audio here [3.5 minutes long] (or scroll down for text)

So, the house lockdown is scheduled to end in 2 days (March 8). However, the building management does not want to be quoted saying it is 100% sure. There are plenty of hazmat suits, and I would say the amount of workers in these suits has been increasing – not decreasing – since we started this lockdown.

Still, there are 0 cases in this whole apartment complex/community. Hopefully, that is the data they need to release us from home prison.

If anything, it has been a true “mini mastermind” diving deep with David on NowShenzhen and Luciano on Excalibur Brothers as we are all here on lockdown together. Also, it’s given me a bit more bonding time with my son, Miles.

Here are the “bullet points” for this coming week:

  • The HR handbook that we can hopefully show to the Shadstone team
  • NowShenzhen considering a deals section as well as community insights. Content flow optimization/aggregation
  • Excalibur Brothers – Still chipping away at the first 4 products we are preparing for Amazon.
  • HandyCon Handshake Conference – 1.5 weeks away! This week is a big one on speakers sharing posters, confirmed schedules, and main the main push. I’m working on an article now.
  • Flamingo Handshake – We have 2 on deck: one in Ukraine this week and the other for HandyCon the week after.
  • Indigitus negotiations are still underway while we continue to chip away at the hardware. As always, software is acting as a bottleneck.
  • GFA Kids – Need to work out the new package and offers w/ Wendy and the team. We are still optimizing the workflow and tech. With schools still closed, it gives GFA kids a chance to grow further.
  • Client Work – I’m noticing that more and more of it is related to the decentralized web. We at Shadstone are still in web2, but more and more are working in the web3 space. Even current clients are asking for help making NFTs and websites on the decentralized internet/blockchain. Feeling well-positioned for this transition.

Yes, that is a LOT + could be even more. What is my role? What is my position?

Janette, our consultant, has said that we as a company have made huge strides since she started consulting with us earlier in 2021. Honestly, this feels good.

For those who follow these the weekly updates, you should notice this transition of “letting go” and empowering the team and the partners to be leaders and decision makers. Still worried, honestly, but I’m trying not to micromanage. In any case, it is impossible for me to micromanage at this point. It is just too much.

Half of me is burning out and yearning for a temple visit again, but with so much coming in the next couple of months (HandyCon and the Excalibur Brothers launch mainly), I just have to keep grinding, digging, and building up the team and the partners.

For those who want to hear the full week plan for Shadstone Limited, Mike’s company (removing sensitive info) – here it is:

Week Plan March 6-12, 2022 Shadstone Limited

This world today is definitely not boring. We as a team just need to try to cope as best we can. Take care of our friends and family first, and if there are ways to help those in the world under stress, take care of them as well.

Still truly impressed with our team and leadership. Again this week I will put “names” but I know I am missing some amazing people in this write up, so please do not be discouraged if you are not named here. Everyone is doing outstanding and we are so “rich” with amazing people.

HR Department

Again, building this department was one of our smarter investments late last year (I cannot believe we didn’t have a formal department until then!).

Nessa, with the support of Lori and LJ, have been doing outstanding work in creating an HR company handbook (which is different from the one at I know it is confusing, maybe we need to update our name convention).

In general, amazing progress. We are having a system where applicants can come in. We have a good workflow. Also, Jade is getting involved and integrating the teacher recruitment process for GFA kids with the general Shadstone recruitment process to utilize the assets and processes we have made.


Elayne has done a fantastic job embracing the overwhelming tasks and initiatives while also getting accustomed to our Google Docs/Drive system. Excited to do a “community insights” article about how people in Shenzhen are dealing with the lockdowns, etc.

Excalibur Brothers / Blimp

The 4 products are moving along well. Jasmine has been doing amazing in helping on sourcing and supplier coordination.

The big issue is our apartment is locked down and not even major delivery companies can bring the samples here. So, we are sending those to different locations while also coordinating with a shop on the packaging design and printing.

Christian is helping on the listing process for the remaining products and we need to get the product details on our website URL first (for copyright, SEO, and external traffic) as soon as we can to have our PPC prepared.

GFA Kids

Jade is helping make a ton of documents. I’m seeing walls of text in WeChat, Google Docs, and Slack from Wendy as well.

Appreciate LJ and Chelcy stepping in a bit, and Lori as always keeping it together. Just a little nervous there are communication gaps between the parties and I hope we can make a smooth process and a clear offer.

The idea Wendy has is to change it from purely “pay per session” to a more holistic and complete package with the core being the teaching. In addition, we want to add some of the e-Commerce/business group sessions to make it more relevant to GFA + differentiated (so it is not apples to apples when parents compare our offer to other mass produced online platforms).

HandyCon is coming up QUICK

Less than 2 weeks away now. Anne, thanks for being such a great leader and fitting all the pieces (i.e. chaos!) together. This week will be a big marketing push with Stephenie’s amazing speaker posters.

We also need to do some more initiatives. A long form blog post is being written today and we may need to “suck it up” and make a traditional DNS website URL too.

Flamingo Handshake

Flamingo Handshake is rolling along well. Again, Anne is heading things up on the Shadstone side. Encrypted/ is working well with us and we are putting together a special Ukraine-themed auction this Wednesday/Thursday (4 a.m. Manila time, yipes – but for Europe time it should be active at and hard to hit all the time zones).

Also for Flamingo Handshake, Manly with support of Francis, put together an amazing system for sellers to submit their name and the admin team can review them and communicate to them directly in the system.

This hopefully can simplify the process and allow us to better optimize the flow and grow this to a standalone business.


For Indigitus, there are serious negotiations happening, and we have been getting more and more refunds hitting. It’s just a lot of politics between parties and the software development side needing to be re-negotiated. Honoring refunds and not re-selling those slots (that is all I’ll say on that matter).

Client Projects

Client projects are churning along. Even one of our oldest clients is asking for help in transitioning into web3 and NFT.

In general, it seems more and more of our client work is related to blockchain, handshake, and the future internet. That vision of starting SkyInclude and bridging web2 and web3 so far is working out.

While sure there are some headaches and hassles the company and individuals are dealing with (I’m in a home prison right now), we need to stay positive. We need to keep developing our skills, staying on top of the trends in business and technology – and we will come out of this global transition better than ever.

If anything, all of this uncertainty in the world is an acceleration point for the new internet.

And we are well positioned for that change.

I know we are doing a ton of projects, but if you look at them and re-read the list above, it is the transition of web2 to web3 with some projects more on the traditional side and some on the cutting edge.

At our core though, we are still an internet marketing and content agency for e-Commerce and online businesses.

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