Career and Enterprising

Use the 5-step ‘Spiral Method’ as an alternative to Google search

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In this modern-day era, the average person goes straight to the Google search bar to find new information. But do you know that Google may not be the best way to learn new things?

Well, more than half of the information written online is rewritten content. Let’s also not forget about the high marketing spend certain companies are pumping into every month to rank their websites up on the first page of Google.

This is the reason why we would like to introduce to you a five-step approach called the ‘Spiral Method’ to help you gain a new perspective in learning new things. Consider this as an alternative to Google if you would like. 

In short, the ‘Spiral Method’ is made of 15 to 20 meetings with people in your network and their extended connections. At the start, you may not get as much learning data. However, it progresses into something deeper as you advance to your 10th meeting and beyond.

Please also note that we’re not asking you to ditch Google. Google can still act as your supplemental tool and learning partner. Just in case you get conflicting views from the industry experts you’ve spoken to, you can always confirm it with the content on Google search.

Without further ado, let’s show you how the five-step ‘Spiral Method’ works.

#1: Pick your topic and reach out
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When you head to Google, chances are that you already have a topic in mind. If you have a couple of questions in your thinking cap, you may want to pick on the ones that matter and sub-categorize them accordingly.

Next, instead of typing the keywords in your search bar, go to your social media or LinkedIn and take a good look at your connections. You don’t have to pick out 15 people at once because referrals can come into play later. Just select at least five to eight people and then reach out politely, asking for a short 30-minute conversation on your decided topic.

#2: Prioritise big concepts from the get-go

Life often throws us lemons. But the smart people use it to make lemonade with a tinge of sweetness. Depending on who you meet, you may be bombarded with lots of valuable information from the get-go. It’s okay even if you don’t remember down to the exact details.

The idea at the beginning is that you prioritize big theories surrounding your chosen topic. Think of it as the main takeaways from each conversation. At the start, don’t stress yourself over being an expert at the topic you’re researching. At this stage, you’re just trying to be a bit smarter and more informed. You could even tap on keywords that you’ve not heard before and use them as the basis to dig deeper.

#3: Be brave to request referrals
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At the end of every conversation you have with an expert or industry personnel, thank them for their time but don’t leave it at just that. Be brave to ask for referrals so you can turn one connection into other relevant contacts. If you think it might be impolite to reach out to these new contacts personally, request a short introduction to ease you into your newfound relation.

#4: Keep up with the conversations until you’ve met 15 to 20 specialists

Remember what we mentioned in the introduction about the ‘Spiral Method’? The approach is essentially made of 15 to 20 meetings with people in your network and their extended connections. Hence, keep up with the conversations until you’ve met about 15 to 20 industry experts.

As you reach your 10th conversation, you might have gathered some key concepts or keywords which require some research into. Don’t be afraid to use Google to do some reading up before you go on your next meeting with your 11th connection and beyond. The last thing you want to do is to rush into conversations without doing the necessary read-up on selected concepts beforehand.

Also, as you expand your network and receive referrals from your existing connections, you will be more likely to meet niche experts in the field. Remember to ask for the latest trend or where your particular subject is heading towards in the near future. These people have been in the market for an extended period and can be trusted with their predictability over what’s out on the worldwide web.

#5: Track your progress and recall the information you’ve learned throughout your conversations
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As we come to a close, be aware that it is absolutely normal for your learning rate to slow down as you progress. As a good gauge, about 60% of the information you hear may be new, while the other 40% is what is already ingrained in your mind by the 5th meeting.

Depending on the chosen topic and the people you meet, some spiral approaches may be at a faster or slower rate than others. That is why it’s essential that you track your progress by recalling the information you’ve picked up throughout your conversations.

Hopefully, by your 15th conversation, you would have maxed out your professional knowledge regarding that subject and no longer have to continue setting up meetings any further. But if there’s a need to continue, then go ahead until you’ve reached the peak point where there’s no need to speak to anyone anymore.

There‘s more to researching than just relying on Google. Try using the ‘Spiral Method’ next time!

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