Recovering & Still Locked Down, & Grinding, Week Plan March 20

In now by Michael Michelini

What Mike Michelini is up to Now – March 20 – 26, 2022

Listen as audio here [2 minutes long] (or scroll down for text)

Recovering! 3 day intense online conference HandyCon which started 3am or 5am Asia time, til early afternoon just drained me. But we made history and pushing the ball further forward for Handshake so it was worth it.

This week:
* Will I be released from home lockdown? Shenzhen apartment “might” allow us to leave our homes, been here since Feb 20.
* Post HandyCon items – videos posting, sponsor followups, auction settlement, survey collection and review.
* GFA Kids – will review the progress as I haven’t been in touch due to HandyCon
* HR – we are hiring.
* Excalibur Brothers – further developing our first 4 products.
* Indigitus and dWeb in general – hardware and software post in person meetings and discussions.
* Clients and BlogJV deals – tons of opportunities, and of course continue to do top service to our current clients and partners.

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

March 20 – 26, 2022 Week Plan Shadstone Limited

Well, ya, a lot of the team is hopefully getting some well deserved rest the weekend. Amazing, amazing job at HandyCon 2022. Still recovering myself but want to keep the habit of weekly updates every Sunday morning – and processing all the amazing things that have happened.

Just so proud of the TEAM. Team is everything, it is true what the good management books say. There seems no limit to what we can achieve and while I am celebrating our success – my mind can only think of all the new amazing things we can do with such amazing people.

Leaders, managers, independent minded who can learn and adjust and be flexible. This is what we have always yearned for at Shadstone and I’d say we are 90% there with the team. Back to those core values – the “key SLOT” – self learning, online work, teamwork” and we are making it happen.

And we are HIRING. Talk to our amazing HR manager Nessa if you have people you’d like to refer and want to know our job openings.

And at the same time – we are DIVERSIFIED in our business. For example, NowShenzhen (which has been improving quite a bit and getting advertising) is under some pressure due to the extended lockdowns here in Shenzhen – but while that is locked down – we have HandyCon online which is getting sponsors and auction dealflow.

That was always the “dream”. So many advisors and business experts told me that was my weakness. To not focus on 1 thing. But you know what, now it is where we can rub that in their faces (in my opinion). As diversifying allows us to have income streams from all sorts of business models and channels.

Yes it is hard.
And yes, it has been a “work in progress” since Shadstone started in 2007 (technically even before that, I’d say 2004 was truly the start with the first online business).

But the empire is shaping together. The long term re-investing of every dollar possible over the decades has been working.

Sure, we have had plenty – PLENTY of spectacular failures, cheaters, deals gone wrong (dealing with a bunch as I type this) – but that is business – and that is life.

If you don’t put yourself out there and are afraid of a mistake or a failure – you will never be able to achieve new and innovative things.

For us, the list of projects is long, and let me try to go through some highlights:

* SkyInclude (HandyCon, Flamingo Handshake) – well this was truly epic week for this business. 500 attendees to HandyCon, and a Handshake wide record breaking auction. Need to now sort out the recordings for Youtube, auction settlement, survey results, and continue to engage and grow the Handshake community at large.
* GFA Kids – the team is doing well (I believe, I am not too involved, which is my goal), more teachers onboarding, Wendy seems to be onboarding more and more parents, the management team Lori and Jade and LJ are sorting things out. Honestly I do not know how much profit margin is normal for this business (I’m used to ecommerce and online businesses – this seems more traditional). I’ll be catching up this week on what has happened but from the chats I am seeing while it is chaotic, that is how any business starts.
* GFA “adults” / Blimp / Excalibur Brothers – kind of bucketing these 3 into 1 lately (for my own sanity). Been harder to do new product development when you’ve been locked in an apartment for 1 month, and can’t receive certain samples, but we are chugging along. Packaging seems to be the main focus, the polishing cloth under production. Need to work on the influencer outreach and see if Maria can get involved or not (she is a great expert on this, so hope it is possible).
* NowShenzhen – extremely challenging – last week the code name “week of silence” was placed in Shenzhen – as even subways and buses were shut down, major factories shut down. Not sure how much the government wants to cripple the economy, but it will do whatever it takes to have 0 cases which seems like a losing battle. But the team at NowShenzhen is pushing along, doing a survey of businesses, still gaining advertisers for those who can grow in this environment. That is the main indicator for me, our teamwork and the SOP and procedures being optimized (similar to the new GFA kids project above)

BlogJV and clients:
Getting more and more leads coming in for people who want to grow their Amazon. Mainly Chinese factories, and sellers in Southeast asia. We have reseller consultant partners who want to help provide clients. Which is great, but we are a bit overcapacity and need to decide if we want to hire more people to grow the agency division or not. To me, it seems GFA community is best “monetized” through consulting and agency projects rather than sponsorship and membership model – at least in today’s environment.

LOVE WHAT WE ARE DOING. Yes, it is a lot – but at the core – we are an amazing team and “engine” for ecommerce and online media companies in the bridge from web2 to web3. Believe we are well positioned to be ahead of the market as web3 continues to gain traction, and the vision is we need to continue to pay attention to and serve the traditional market while trying to be ahead in the new internet as it evolves.

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