We started working with Kent quite early in his professional career in 2014, shortly after he graduated college. Kent was speaking regularly at meetups when we caught a YouTube video of one of Kent's talks on how to manage authentication with AngularJS applications. It was quite a hot topic at the time we invited him to turn his talk into a course on egghead.io.
After a bit of coaching on how to produce value-packed content that gets straight to the point, Kent released his first course. It certainly didn't take long after his first course launched for Kent to see the benefits, starting with his first royalty check of $2,000.
"With that first check, I was blown away at how much of an impact that this side hustle was going to go have on my life," says Kent. "Becoming egghead instructor also gave me credibility. It opened new opportunities for me because conferences were really interested in what I had to say."
Kent really takes joy in creating content and teaching others — and does it ever show! Over the last five years, Kent has created a ton of content — and not just the more than 200 video lessons he's created on egghead.io.
Like many of egghead's instructors, the big challenge for Kent was finding the time to create courses on the side. As a married father of four children with a full-time job as a developer, time was certainly precious.
"Finding time for this side hustle while having those responsibilities has always been a challenge," says Kent. "It takes time to produce material and record it. Even when I already have the material, you have to take the time to cater it to work as recorded material."
To make things as easy as possible for instructors, egghead handles all the administrative details of publishing the lessons, maintaining the platform, marketing and selling the courses, collecting payments, and managing customer support.
"egghead recognizes what you're really good at and they cover all of the other things," says Kent "You can take the limited time that you have and push it toward that thing you're really good at."
We have collaborated with Kent since 2014 to help grow not only his egghead royalties, but also his following and personal brand, while allowing him to focus exclusively on teaching and delivering high-quality content. In addition to a collaborator, the egghead team has worked as an agent, virtual assistant and fiduciary for Kent.
As Kent continued his work, he developed opinions and ideas around testing. After having done a lot of work on the topic and delivering several workshops, Kent pitched several courses on testing for egghead.
At the same time, we'd been thinking on how to help ambitious instructors like Kent that we'd been working with over the years to take their knowledge sharing to the next level. We developed the idea to use egghead infrastructure as a platform and design agency to release badass extended, deep-dive standalone courses that deliver an insane amount of value for learners and deliver even bigger returns for the creator.
Kent is one of egghead's top instructors and we've built a rock-solid relationship with him over the years. Plus, it was clear the testing courses he was developing would deliver such a huge amount of value. So it was a perfect opportunity to help him build this as a standalone product on its own microsite.
The main challenge for Kent was, of course, finding time to create the product on top of his work and family responsibilities.
"I knew that this was going to be significant because I'd never done seven course modules all in a row before," says Kent. "But it was very clear to me that this would provide a great deal of value to the world. And it would be really good use of the limited time that I do have on the side."
To free up Kent's time to focus exclusively on the content development, we handled everything else. This included designing and building the platform, paying for the hosting, handling customer support, building his website and blog, collecting payments and reimbursements, doing marketing, and even editing the videos.
Kent absolutely nailed his first standalone product launch — it's the best resource out there to learn how to ship applications with confidence — and its wild success has blown away everyone's already high expectations.
"I went full-time educator back in February because I was like, 'oh, I don't need my salary anymore,'" says Kent.
"And so I can just dedicate this time to do the things that I want to. And I really wouldn't have done that if it weren't for egghead and Joel. Without egghead's support, becoming a full-time educator would involve a lot more administrative/business type things that I don't want to do. egghead handles everything, enabling me to just focus on teaching and enjoy it."
One of egghead's core philosophies is to be as aggressively free as possible. Kent completely embraces this philosophy of serving the community. He is tirelessly helpful, lifting other people up and providing a ton of tools and materials for free. We are always amazed at both the quality and quantity of his contribution.
"Because I don't have to deliver something that makes me enough money every single month, I can work on producing something else that hopefully can help as many people and give me the next wave," says Kent. "I'm really excited about what else we have coming up."
We've built a trust-based and mutually beneficial relationship with Kent over the past five years to help him deliver amazing high-quality learning content to help developers and help Kent build up his reputation to a renowned expert. We're continuing to work together to brainstorm ideas for new content and audience-building ideas.
"I'm able to make the biggest impact for my time with egghead," says Kent. "I absolutely recommend egghead for anybody who wants to teach and reach a wide audience of people. You can go to Udemy, Pluralsight, egghead, Frontend Masters or you can build your own thing. If I was starting all over from the beginning and I had all the time in the world, I would absolutely still choose egghead."