Nick Raithel learned at a young age to think differently about what really delivers the best return on investment.

The founder of the 7-Hour Book told Bushy Martin on the Get Invested podcast that doing an unpaid internship at the beginning of his career taught him the real value of knowledge, experience and investing in himself.

“When you’re getting started whether that’s learning investing or learning a particular trade, there may be times when you have to go in and do things where you’re not going to be paid or where you are going to be paid but the pay check is going to come much, much later,” Nick said.

“That was for my internship that I did many, many years ago in Singapore with the (US) State Department. It was not paid. The plane ticket was not paid, the housing, none of that was paid, but being in that environment, being able to work for a government agency, being able to be overseas, being able to put that on a resume, that would be the payoff.

“I mention that experience because I think that everyone listening to this, there may be times, especially if you’re looking to go in an investment direction, where you’ll have to put off the pay check much later and where for example your wife or the people in your family may be saying, ‘Are you crazy? You need to make money. You need to be getting paid right now,’ but you stand your ground and you realise that ‘no, the pay check, the knowledge, the benefits are coming. I have to put in the time and put in the sweat equity now’.”

Now Nick applies the same principles when helping entrepreneurs and experts write books.

While most people focus on book sales, Nick believes that writing a book brings other long term benefits for the author’s personal brand, marketing and career opportunities.

“I like to say this often, but it holds up so well, the idea as the book as the business card you don’t throw away,” he said.

“These other pieces of content out there which each of them has their own place, each of them is perfectly valid in the right context, but books tend to stand often taller than these other pieces of content and they last longer, for example, than a blog post, much longer than a tweet, much longer than a Facebook post. They even give video a run for its money too.

“You’re building security to ensure you’re going to continue to hopefully get promotions and to get advancement because if you write a book that positions you as an expert, and it clearly shows that you know your field, your boss and your superiors are going to have a pretty hard time looking you in the eye and not promoting you.

“There’s also security on another front in the sense that if you do lose your job or you’re let go or something happens and you can no longer stay at your current position, you’re not starting necessarily from scratch. You have something showing that you’ve built up expertise and knowledge and already positioning you.

“That’s going to help open the doors for you. That might even allow you to go onto a speaking career or to go onto some form of self-employment as well.”

While Nick’s process requires only seven hours of the author’s time, his team invests much more into refining author’s the ideas and helping craft the content into a high quality book.

“With the process, that itself is a very careful, very refined system of questioning and talking to them to pull the ideas out of their head and then synthesise them,” he said.

“It would be constantly be thinking about who the audience is and then write the book specifically for them.”

For Nick, his work brings enormous satisfaction and learning opportunities every day.

“One would be to help people who wouldn’t normally have the time to get their dreams and their thoughts out, to get those dreams and thoughts out through a published book,” he said.

“Another component of that is education. I am a perpetual learner. I’m always trying to learn and improve and unlock and uncover new sources of knowledge.

“So in the process of helping people with these books, me and the members of my team have the privilege of learning from people who are often the best in their field.”

Listen to the full interview here.

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