Episode #2 of Think Different TV features Ramit Sethi of "I Will Teach You To Be Rich" and me in conversation for 40 minutes on personal finance, the media, mentors, writing good emails, and building relationships. Full content and times listed below the screenshot. I recommend watching it on Vimeo and letting it load all the way and then using the chapter markings. Here's an MP3 audio file of the episode.
0:59 Ramit explains what he's telling his readers about personal finance in these tumultuous times
Has the media done a good job explaining the crisis?
Ben says he admires those who have conceded the complexity of the situation
Ben says most young people he talks to don't really care what's going on in D.C. re: finance industry
Ben says if you're going to be an engaged citizen, you should follow what's going on even if it doesn't affect your own situation
Ramit says ignore macro-economics and focus on what you can control
Ben says if you take "only focus on things you control" to its logical end, people shouldn't focus on anything going on in Washington.
Ramit talks about his scholarship
Ramit says doing things that can scale — and reach a large audience — is most fun
What are the keys to a successful outreach to get 15 mins of a busy person's time?
Ramit says personalize the outreach
Ben says asking good questions is key and the key to a good question is specificity
Ben cites Geoffrey Moore's strategy to dominating niches and leveraging success as analogous to escalating communications in a relationship
Ramit asks Ben what the best way to get 15 minutes of Ben's time is – Ben says he's biased toward people who do their background research
Ramit: "Build a portfolio of work online that you can point people to"
Ben confesses that he judges people based on appropriate apostrophe usage in "its" and "it's"
Ramit talks about the "lamest, most ridiculous" emails he gets
Ben says in early days of a relationship your communications need a clear call to action, but eventually you should be able to say something and have the person react
Ramit says his use of "eom" in the subject line reflects the intimate nature of his relationship with Ben
Ben riffs on mentors: don't ask explicitly for someone to be a mentor, and it takes time. Relationships have a natural pace to them.
Ramit says ask your mentor good questions
Ben says also try to add value and bring up those topics for which there is no expert.