I’ve spoken out pretty publicly about the fact I don’t believe modeling works. You know, the traditional advice of “when you want to do something, find someone who has done it, do exactly what they’ve done, and you’ll get the same results.”
The primary reason it does not work is because you are NOT that person.
There are likely differences in your personality, experience, and situation, the odds you will get exactly the same results are not in your favor…because you’re not doing EXACTLY the same thing if any or all of those elements are different.
I had an “aha” this morning that there really are two types of modeling, and one has a greater chance of working than the other. Let me explain.
Modeling From Afar
This is the dangerous type. This is where you see someone doing something, and from the outside, without talking to them, learning from them personally, or working with them, you attempt to copy what they appear to be doing.
The danger in this type of modeling is you can only model what you see. And, I guarantee you there is a lot more going on behind the scenes than you know.
I saw this first hand last year when I was enrolled in a course to learn a new marketing strategy. I was on the inside learning first-hand all the in’s-and-out’s of the strategy, and there was a lot of behind the scenes stuff I had no idea was going on when I had watched this marketing strategy from afar in the past.
At the same time I was taking this course, someone I knew was attempting to replicate this same marketing strategy without taking the course. She modeled what she saw going on externally. And what I saw was that she missed some very critical foundational steps. As far as she knew, she was doing everything she had seen done by someone else. But what she didn’t see she couldn’t model, and as a result she missed out on some critical parts of the equation.
Modeling With Access
The other type of modeling is modeling with direct access to the person you are modeling: hiring that person as a coach or mentor to teach you what they’ve done and (and this is an important “and”) help you apply it to YOUR business.
If you can learn directly from the horse’s mouth, and then get their help customizing it to your personality, your business, your situation, and your clients, then modeling may work. Will you get the exact same results as the person you’re modeling? Probably not. However, you can shorten your learning curve, and you can learn from your experience.
Best of all, you’ll know you’re modeling exactly what they did, and not just what you think they did.