The Puttering Sessions
If you’re on this page, you’re wanting to explore booking a one-time, one-on-one coaching session with me.
Before I explain anything, it should be said that your chance of booking a space if you’re not in my Membership are low. I email my members before I email anyone. It’s rare I announce it to my whole list.
Having said that, and to explain this offer and how it came to be, I’ll have to braid together four threads.
Thread #1: Lifestyle first.
Years ago, I met the good Alex Baisley.
He said one of the smartest things I’ve ever heard about business: start with the lifestyle you want and then back your business into that.
Too many start a business and then struggle to get any quality of life out of the machine they’ve set into motion.
Thread #2: The impact of clutter on me.
Our lived environments have a tremendous effect on us. If our environment is cluttered our minds will likely be cluttered. If our environment is beautiful then we tend to be fed by that.
Thread #3: I resent tidying.
I find it really difficult to stay on top of tidying and keeping my place as well organized, dusted, swept, and cared for as I’d like to. I tend to only tidy when friends are coming over and I can feel like I’m feeding two birds with one hand, or I’ll tidy while I’m on the phone with folks, which isn’t that often anymore.
Thread #4: I didn’t coach much for years.
For years, I did very little one-on-one work, and charged $300/hour for it because, at that price, I no longer resented the endless Zoom calls.
So, here’s my unusual offer: The Puttering Sessions.
A number of times a month, I’m offering up some one-on-one coaching sessions for $200 USD each. You only need to sign up for one. There’s no pressure to ever sign up for another. This isn’t a package deal. It’s just a wee, little call between you and I.
“Hearing idea after idea after idea burst into life!”
“What can I say, you’re truly a gift. I thought the Puttering Calls were a genius idea and being on the phone with you and hearing idea after idea after idea burst into life, while I think you were washing the dishes, was like a conveyer belt delivering one amazing present after another.”
“The quality and energy of the ideas we generated this session had a potency that surpassed many other coaching experiences in my past.”
“There’s something magical about chatting with Tad while he is wandering his house doing chores, and I am doing the same. Maybe it’s the kinesthetic activity stimulating thought, or maybe it’s that I began with a juicy inquiry for myself, but the quality and energy of the ideas we generated this session had a potency that surpassed many other coaching experiences in my past. I initially signed up for this because the quirkiness appealed to my sense of humour, and I was curious what it would be like to be coached by a guy washing the dishes. But it was practical, useful, and great value for the price. I will be back!”
Pamela L. Alexander, Voice Coach & Performer, compassionatevoice.ca
The Ten Catches:
Before you book this, let’s make sure this is a fit.
Catch #1: I’ll be tidying during the call.
The catch is that I’ll be puttering and tidying while we chat.
I’ve been running these sessions for a few years now and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. And my house has never been tidier. When I first launched this offer, I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea. And now I can’t imagine my life without them. I think this may be one of the best business ideas I’ve ever had.
To be clear: I’ll pause and take notes when I need to. I’ll make a list of things to send to you post call. But you’ll hear the tinkling of dishes, the water running as I scrub my sink, doors opening and closing, etc.
Catch #2: No written materials during the call.
It must be something we can do while I putter. So a sales letter, event write up or website review that would require me to be locked down at my computer for the whole call is out. I don’t mind taking a peek but if we can’t talk about it while my hands are deep in the suds doing dishes, it’s not going to work.
Catch #3: I won’t read things you send me before the call.
We’re just chatting on the phone. That’s all. I am doing this to get away from spending time on the screen. If this call requires me to read something you email me then it’s not a Puttering Session anymore. I will not be reviewing anything before the call. Don’t email me things to look at. I won’t look at them. If you want my eyes on something, then you should book a Niche Review, come to a Free First Thursday or join the Membership Program where we do screen sharing in group coaching sessions all the time.
Catch #4: This is not about helping you figure out what to do with your life.
That’s not my gig. If you need help with that, go and see Alex Baisley. I need you to bring me an existing business of some sort that you’re struggling to market in some way. I can’t help you figure out what kind of business to get into.
Catch #5: I can’t tell you what to want.
Sometimes I get calls from people who, fundamentally, don’t know what they want in their business life. I can help you work with the clarity you have and to achieve what you want but, if you really don’t know what you want, I can’t help much. The few Puttering Sessions I’ve had where I hung up the phone and felt awful came down to this: I’d give ideas and they’d say, “We can’t do that because…” in an endless loop which came down to them being confused about which direction to go in life as a whole.
Catch #6: Please be on time.
I will wait for five minutes for a latecomer, but after that, I will move on with my work and your session is forfeit. If you’re not going to be able to make it or think you’ll be late, please cancel/reschedule your session 48 hours advance. After that your fee is non-refundable and we cannot guarantee rebooking (though we’ll do our best).
I recommend you get yourself ready and settled at your computer five minutes ahead of time so you’re definitely ready at the appointed time.
Catch #7: Let’s have reasonable expectations.
If you are coming with expectations such as this, please don’t book a session. Please go and find someone else to be disappointed by. What I can offer is the very real likelihood of modest but meaningful progress in whatever you bring. That seems to happen consistently. This is just you and I chatting for an hour. That’s all. It’s not much but it might just be something deeply worthwhile. As you can see from the testimonials (and I could get dozens more if I needed to) the sessions tend to go well.
I recently had a call with a woman who, at the end of an hour (where I worked very hard to help her make some progress in her finding her niche) expressed her sincere disappointment that she hadn’t figured out her niche statement. My mind was boggled by this. She seemed to imagine that something that had stymied her for years would be wrapped up with a neat little bow in an hour? This way lies madness.
One of my main inspiration for YouTube videos are the conversations I have with clients. I won’t share any details that might give away your identity (unless I think it might help you get clients). I won’t share anything that I think would hurt or undercut your business. But I will likely share the broad strokes of, “I had a client who came to me with this question and here’s what we came up with.” This isn’t a confidential, therapeutic relationship. I’m just a marketing coach. If I think that there’s something from our conversation that could be useful to the world, I’ll be sharing it.
In 2024, I’ll likely be running an apprenticeship program, training business and marketing coaches on my approach. Part of that will be to listen to recordings of coaching sessions I’ve led. They won’t ever know your full name or have access to your contact info etc. If material seems sensitive, it won’t be used.
If you need to emotionally vent and “be heard” and to verbally process your state of affairs, I bless that and suggest you go elsewhere to friends, family or a therapist. You’re paying me your hard earned money. My commitment is that you get value for that. If I sense that you’re rambling beyond what’s needed, I will interrupt you, cut the thread and invite us to move on. An hour goes much faster than you’d think. I’m not intending to be rude but deeply respectful of your investment of time and money
The conversation will have a more casual tone to it.
I’ve had many such conversations with friends done in just this way where I was coaching them but also puttering as I did so, and those impromptu sessions went really well.
“There was something refreshing about being able to talk an idea out with Tad.”
“My puttering session was just what I needed – laser focused and full of value. Towards the end of our session I felt like I was having a number of awesome and inspiring breakthroughs and new ideas. There was something refreshing about being able to talk an idea out with Tad – who I’ve never met! – and experience what it felt like to share my ideas for the “first time” and get some super candid and honest feedback around it all.”
Allegra Stein, allegrastein.com
A smaller catch: If the session goes well, I’d like to get a testimonial from you that I could use to sell future puttering sessions to those who don’t believe that puttering and productivity can go together well.
If this is of interest to you just select the date and time that works best for you from below and I’ll chat with you then.
“I took a total u-turn after working with Tad.”
“When I first heard of Marketing for Hippies, I thought “here’s someone who cuts through the bullshit and is REAL.” First, I learned from one of Tad’s ebooks, which then led to two puttering sessions.
I knew that I wanted and needed 1:1 sessions and Tad’s presence/listening skills were palpable (in spite of the puttering!). He had some practical suggestions to apply once the session was over.
The most helpful message that I’ve received and applied from Tad is: know your niche! I know this is bandied about a lot these days, but Tad drilled down and got to the sticky parts–the gaps in my ‘knowing.’
I’m just applying now the things that we talked about–I took a total u-turn after working with Tad. I’m connecting with my audience more, noticing what they say that they need and using this in my approach/copy/offerings.
My experience of marketing now is much more positive! I notice a willingness to face it and get on with it, which wasn’t there before. In other words, I’m much less resistant. Thanks!”
Charlotte Young, charlotteyoung.com.au
Bonus: Your Puttering Prep Pack
You and I will speak for an hour and riff on ideas for your business.
This prep work, which is totally voluntary, is to help you get the most from your session.
I would say that 95% of my Puttering Sessions end up being about helping people clarify their niche. And, in 80% of those conversations, I ask people to do the same exercises.
So, I thought I would offer you up those exercises before our session together so you have the option of showing up with that work already done so we can focus on me giving my feedback on it rather than you doing it.
More bang for your buck.
That’s all. Thanks for stopping by.
p.s. If you think you’ll be able to stay on track, you’re welcome to putter too. Why not get marketing coaching and a cleaner home or office at the same time? As long as we’re both willing to pause and really focus, write notes etc. when needed, this should go swimmingly.
p.p.s. If you want to record your Puttering Session on your phone or device, that’s fine by me. Then you can go back to it or listen over again, some people find this helpful, I leave it to you.
p.p.p.s. This idea has done so well that other colleagues of mine are doing the same thing.
Danielle Gardener of Quiet Marketing fame is doing her Pottering Sessions (the British way of saying it).
Mentorship Program alumnus Melanie Fielstra is leading her nutritionally focused, GAPS Diet, Puttering Sessions.
I’ve heard of others doing coaching while they walked in the Redwoods with people (either in person or on the phone). I’ve heard of people offering coaching while working on their short-range golf game (Putting Sessions). I encourage you to come up with your own spin on this and try it yourself. It’s the best business decision I’ve ever made.
And you can check out more of my thoughts on building a business model that works for you here.
p.p.p.p.s. If you’d like to save money on every Puttering Session you book, consider becoming a Member of the Marketing for Hippies Membership.
Book Your Puttering Session
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“He was able to see that what I thought I needed work on wasn’t the real issue at all.”
“It was pretty magical how the information started to flow out of me.”
“In my first puttering session with Tad, I wanted to know how to apply the concept of abundance to my marketing. Tad got me to draw two lines on a piece of paper and write how my clients will show up in their marketing if they were feeling abundant. He did the same thing with messaging, it was pretty magical how the information started to flow out of me. I did the same thing with packaging and also with the relationship with power and money. I had two more puttering sessions after that and both of them were very helpful. I got clarity on different aspects of my business and what I needed to do to move forward.”
Zahra Efan, zahraefan.com
“It was phenomenal.”
“I recently had the pleasure of a puttering session with Tad Hargrave. It was phenomenal. I have been reading blog posts by, watching videos featuring and taking various niching offerings with Tad for several years now. They have all had a great impact on my work.
The puttering session was different. One hour of Tad’s time and focus was perhaps the most generous, most impactful and most challenging sessions I have ever had.
Tad fully invested the vast power of his knowledge and curiosity into my idea. He didn’t hold back. I started with a desire and a mediocre idea. He challenged me to go way deeper than I imagined possible. It’s been almost two months and I’m still working away at the challenges Tad put before me.
If you know Tad and you want to be challenged to go way deeper into your work, these sessions are for you. If you are looking for a pat on the back and have your ideas validated, you might want to look elsewhere.
I’m still blown away by how much impact such a short session has had on my work.”
Beth Cox, dialdownyourpain.co.uk
"In just 45 minutes it was amazing the break-throughs I experienced."
“Just finished a phone consultation with Tad Hargrave last night, discussing business niches and development, specifically related to solving the pain points involved in running a business that sometimes feels like it’s running me.
In just 45 minutes it was amazing the breakthroughs I experienced. Tad is a wise man with SO much experience coaching and mentoring businesses, and although I’ve received tons of value from his books and workshops, I couldn’t have anticipated how much value he provides 1-on-1. I’ll definitely hiring him 1-on-1 again.
I appreciated all his thoughts and the clarity of not trying to make my business my “everything” and trying to fit my whole psyche within it was so helpful. Feeling inspired to keep solving the problems one-by-one rather than reinventing everything.
You’re a good man Tad, and I’m so grateful you’ve been so dedicated your offering for so long, it is finely honed.”
“Tad is like three or four humans concentrated into one.”
“Tad is like three or four humans concentrated into one. Full stop. Even small doses of him are so potent, I can let them melt in my mouth for weeks afterwards. And did I mention, I am also a putterer? So, having the permission to do useful things with my hands makes it all the more likely that I will actually show up to a meeting. And showing up makes all the difference in the world in getting over my fear of one of the top five reviled business topics: marketing. Thanks Tad, the taste of our last session still lingers on my tongue.”
Nala Walla, Ancestral Nutrition | Somatic Griefwork, BWellNow.org
“Tad quickly honed in on my niche and gave me the honest feedback”
“I find Tad’s style online so honest and relatable and I just love the slow marketing approach, so was really looking forward to having focused time with him…Fantastic! Unfortunately with the timezone difference it was a 5am call for me in Australia, so not my clearest thinking time but Tad quickly honed in on my niche and gave me the honest feedback I needed to hear. It’s helped me to feel more connected to the way I talk about the work I share and how I share it.
You can do the puttering prep, which is great in its own right, but Tad’s magic weaves itself throughout the actual conversation. It not only stimulated my thinking, it was super-helpful to say stuff out loud which, for me, often turns out very differently to how I have written it!”
“His suggestions feel doable, not scary or smarmy.”
"It's like a calm, creative door has been opened & insights keep seeping in."
“Tad really listened to me and my goals.”
“Tad gave me some awesome tips to honour both the artist and the healer.”
“Easily worth at least twice the price I paid.”
“I booked a Puttering Session with Tad hoping to get his take on a question that was outfoxing me about articulating our “Point of View.” As it turned out, I got this and so much more! Tad blew me away with his attention and depth of understanding about the complexities of my business … so much so I had to ask him at the end if he’d actually done any puttering during our call — he certainly put paid to the belief that men can’t multi-task!
I came away from the call with so much more understanding about how to articulate what we do for our potential customers, and a clear sense of the next steps to get there. The call was easily worth at least twice the price I paid. If you’re pondering booking a Puttering Session — snap one up while you still can! This is one of those rare offers that’s *not* too good to be true.”
Lian Brook-Tyler, Primal Happiness, primalhappiness.co
“The best investment of time and money that I have made in my business.”
“My Puttering Session with Tad was incredibly powerful. In talking through my niche and my marketing challenges, we were quickly able to identify a key issue with my business model and come up with a plan to address it. This is something that I have been chasing around for years, and it was addressed in this one hour! What a gem! This session has been the best investment of time and money that I have made in my business, and a priceless bonus is that it has brought me renewed excitement as I put into place all the ideas that have grown from this session. Thanks, Tad!”
Tracey Lewindon, Registered Aromatherapist and Healer, naturesheart.ca
“Enough clarity and suggestions to work on for the next two months!”
“I came to the session stuck. I had heard great things about Tad but was doubtful of how much we could cover in one hour, and was unsure where to even start. I was blown away by Tad’s questions and insights. I left the session with enough clarity and suggestions to work on for the next two months! It felt like I arrived at the session with a box of puzzle pieces and left with a clear framework. I now recommend these sessions to all my biz friends!”
Suzanne Culberg, suzanneculberg.com
“Deeper insight than I’ve gained in years of reading books and paying thousands of dollars for other coaching help...”
“A ‘Puttering Session’ is like being directly plugged-in to the genius of Tad’s brilliant mind and caring spirit — he sees problems from multiple angles and asks wicked-smart questions to draw out your truest answers. While he walking in the park and even though we’d never met, Tad was completely focused on helping me clarify my niche which resulted in a quantum leap of clarity for my business: SIX pages of notes, scads of resources to check into, and deeper insight than I’ve gained in years of reading books and paying thousands of dollars for other coaching help, programs, and formulas. I was blown away by the impact our short session had on my work!”
Lisa Yee, Life Support for Awakening Entrepreneurial Women, SoulPrompts.ca
"I lost count of the multiple “a has” I received throughout the session.”
“Let me start by saying Tad is an absolute genius. He is the first person – that I know of – that offers such a huge amount of free content. His business model and message resonate with me on a deep level.
After I implemented a couple of tips, he shares via his free content I noticed an immediate change in my business. That’s when I decided to book a puttering session. I needed to refine my niche and message.
My expectation from our session was to get at least one “a ha” moment. I can assure you that I lost count of the multiple “a has” I received throughout the session.
I left the call having such sharp clarity around my niche and message. I must admit I also felt quite elated and relieved like a huge boulder was removed from my shoulders.
If you are contemplating booking a puttering session or joining any of Tad’s offerings, please do yourself and your business a favour and just do it. You will not only be dealing with an expert in the marketing field but also a remarkable human.”
"Tad was easily able to guide me through places I felt stuck..."
In just one hour I got so much clarity. Before the call, I was feeling stuck around Marketing for my two businesses; didn’t know if I could market them the same, or if they were different. Tad was easily able to guide me through places I felt stuck, and I left the call knowing the way forward, feeling inspired and eager to take action. I will definitely be booking another!
Della Rose Murphy, dellarosemurphy.com
“I loved this real-life, truly human, approach to the consulting model.”
During my Puttering Session with Tad, I moved away from looking for “topics to discuss” to realizing what conversations I want to be having with my evolving community – for me, that brought my ideas to life and clarified the path forward. Digging deep into what people regularly ask me and my role in my students’ & clients’ lives was remarkably helpful. Tad is kind-hearted and was incredibly attentive during our time together. I loved this real-life, truly human, approach to the consulting model.
Natalie Friese, thedynamisinstitute.com
“Excellent value and highly recommended.”
“I had my first Puttering Session with Tad and it was like mining through sand to find that nugget of pure gold I have been looking for in terms of niche, business next-steps, resources, and a viable focus on my work. Tad’s clarity, presence, and listening skill are impressive. I left the session with clarity, direction, and a feeling of hope and excitement. Excellent value and highly recommended.”
Tana Saler, Mind-Body Coach and Trainer, tanasaler.com
“...these sessions are so jam packed...it takes me weeks to integrate all the info...”
“I used to think: it’s “just” a short, hour-long chat with Tad. But these sessions are so jam packed with fresh perspectives, useful strategies, and practical exercises, that it takes me weeks to integrate all the info. Well worth the investment, as far as I’m concerned.”
Nala Walla, BWellNow.org
“He helped me move forward in my marketing.”
“The best thing I could have done at this early stage of creating a new business.”
“I’m in the process of setting up an online coaching business after a long corporate career and became really stressed out by the social media marketing and what I might have to do to create my business. I’d been bombarded with a lot of aggressive marketing which did not align to my values and I didn’t feel I could trust anyone who is trying to sell me a $2000 course.
I heard about Tad from another coach and booked a one hour Puttering Session. What I was looking for was someone who could simplify the marketing process, allay my fears that there was only one way (and not my way) and what I would have to do to get my business started.
Tad took my simple ideas and suggested ways to build a complete business; he educated me in some basic marketing concepts and gave me loads of ideas about what I need to do next. Now I understand how important defining a specific niche and what different business models there are and how that could work for me.
Talking to Tad was the best thing I could have done at this early stage of creating a new business. And, more importantly, what my next steps need to be. I highly recommend him to anyone in a similar situation.”
Amber Georgeson, Online Coach
“I keep welling up with good tears and feeling so excited about things we talked about.”
“Hi Tad. I had a puttering session with you yesterday. I keep welling up with good tears and feeling so excited about things we talked about regarding how I could create something that may be able to help people newly diagnosed with MS. I can feel healthy energy flowing through my body, mind and spirit in new ways and I am delighted to discover that focusing on and moving towards these ideas can actually nourish my own health too. It feels so refreshing to have a piece of my healing or kind of ‘rehab’ that can be focused on something larger than myself. Thank you for how you helped support me with this.”
K.B. (who preferred to stay anonymous)