You may know that one of the presentations I do at WordCamps around the country is on user-experience research on home page design. I teach some of the best practices and then take volunteers from the audience who want to get feedback on their websites.
I began to get dismayed by the numbers of people I met who were struggling to develop a career in web design. Some had major holes in their knowledge and knew it and were working hard to improve. Others had no idea the quality of their work was not up to par. This presents a big problem, especially if they are charging others for their work.
Although I love and am heavily involved in the WordPress community, I knew that Monthly Meetups and a yearly WordCamp, run by volunteers, weren’t providing a systematic curriculum or the mentoring needed by these aspiring WordPress designer/developers to develop their skills to have the career they loved.
To become competent and confident, sure they needed to know how to design and develop a WordPress website but I realized that wasn’t enough and I developed The Seven Core Competency Framework for WordPress Web Design Mastery. They needed a foundation in the following areas:
- Business and Client Management
- Messaging and Copywriting
- Design Expertise
- User Experience and Usability
- WordPress Skills
- General Technical Expertise
- Online Marketing
Last Fall, I created and successfully piloted of the WordPress Web Design Mastery Course, an online course with coaching, that provided a foundation in these seven core competency areas.
All of the students completed the course. Half of them also met the major course requirements to:
- Redesign and launch your own effective business website.
- Submit a proposal and speak at a WordCamp.
Two of the women who launched their new websites, not only had their WordCamp talks accepted but delivered them in the ballroom to over 350 people! A third one spoke to a full room of 65 people.
One of them, a veteran graphic designer who had added WordPress design to her bag of tricks, said, “If you had told me six months ago that I’d be speaking at WordCamp, to 350 people. I would have said, “No way! Not possible. After doing the Mastery Course and taking the WordCamp challenge, I discovered there are many things I can teach people. And, I can’t wait to do it again”
Pretty powerful, right? Learning what she didn’t know that she didn’t know and getting mentoring and support, empowered this print designer to deal with her web design clients with the same confidence. But most importantly, she now knows she is able to share her expertise and touch the lives of others.
Another course participant had never priced a website for more than $3,000, and that included a full branding package. She was ecstatic when she called to tell me that she priced a branding package and website design for $9,750. Her client didn’t flinch but negotiated the price down to $7,500, more than double what my student had made on a site before.
I am now busy tweaking the course content in preparation for the next launch planned for the Fall.
If you know anyone who is in need of some training and coaching to up their WordPress career, I’d appreciate you sharing the information about my course with them.
If you have a following yourself and are interested in developing an affiliate relationship with generous compensation for your confirmed referrals, please let me know.