Making $3.5K/Month With Online Commissioning Training Programs

Published: July 25th, 2021
Paul Turner
Commissioning and...
from Winnipeg, MB, Canada
started December 2019
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Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?

Hello, my name is Paul Turner. I am a professional electrical engineer and a registered project management professional. I have been working on complex projects for over 20 years and gained valuable experience from the projects I have worked on for power generation, power transmission, wastewater treatment plant process, and satellites and rockets in the aerospace industry.

I specialize in testing and commissioning these complex systems. Commissioning is the last phase of the project where equipment and materials are verified to meet contract requirements and plant processes are started for the first time for ongoing operation and maintenance.

Commissioning is a complex topic, and I have created a suite of training programs to teach project managers and engineers the structured and proven process to commission today’s complex projects to deliver them on time and on-budget.

Training programs are presented by discipline and include the following:


Training programs have been very well received by those that have taken the courses, and help to simplify the complex commissioning process.

Anyone that is working on complex projects should be aware of the commissioning process, even if not actively working on the commissioning team. Engineers, technicians, project managers, and HSE specialists from all over the world have enrolled in my commissioning courses.

There is very limited information about commissioning online. You can find bits and pieces of information, but no comprehensive resource that can help you understand the commissioning process. These courses help fill the gap and share my commissioning knowledge with others to help them succeed at delivering their projects on time and within budget.

What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?

I have worked on several megaprojects - some have gone well, and others have not gone well. After seeing projects struggle, it is easy to see what makes a project successful. The commissioning phase is critical to the project’s success, and if design and construction have not gone well, neither will commissioning. Even if design and construction do go well, but issues are deferred to later in the project, the commissioning team will not be set up for success.

Before you even create your solution, plan how you will be discovered online and start to build an audience on that platform. You may find that this helps you understand better what your audience is looking for.

There are lots of stories in the media about projects being late and over budget, and it doesn’t have to be this way. If projects can start with the end-in-mind (i.e. focus on making commissioning successful), then the overall project can go much more smoothly.

Having participated in several projects, I wanted to share my knowledge to help others succeed at commissioning and deliver their projects on time and within budget. I have created an online resource to help the industry transition to a more structured commissioning process. With limited information online, I wanted to create a resource that people can find to help them with their projects. The world requires commissioning specialists, and the resources I have created encourage people to get involved in commissioning and learn the correct way to commission projects.

I knew this was needed since there is limited information available on this complex topic. The industry is very fractured and not standardized, and an online resource can hopefully bring people together to understand this complex process in a structured format.

I first developed a short 3-day mini-course as an introduction to commissioning. This was very well received, with over 10,000 people taking the mini-course. Over a period of 9 months, I then developed each discipline-specific training program. Each program was launched and I was able to learn how to make the next course even better. To date, there has been lots of interest in commissioning training, with an email list that continues to grow.

Take us through the process of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing your first product.

I have lots of great experience with commissioning and startup, and I wanted to share this experience with others.

I created a lead magnet which is a short free 3-Day Mini-Course on commissioning and startup. The course is a great introduction to commissioning and has been well received, over 10,000 people have taken the free course, and I have received positive feedback from the learners. They started posting their course certificates on LinkedIn and Facebook. The good news was circulating fast, and I received lots of inquiries and requests to connect on my social media accounts.

This created lots of interest for my first paid course, which provides more specifics on the commissioning and startup process specific to mechanical commissioning. From the lead magnet, people would join my email list and receive weekly updates, always helpful to provide more valuable information on commissioning and startup, and providing links to my courses. This has generated lots of interest in my paid courses.

The information for the course was easy to prepare since I understand commissioning, but packaging the information into a nicely formatted system took some time with video editing, PDF preparation, and preparing all the training material in Kajabi, which is what I am using as my online course delivery platform.

I always remind myself that learning is a continuous process. I should not stop myself from gaining valuable knowledge. I believe that the more I learn, the more I help people in the Commissioning and Startup industry.

The things that I have learned in creating my first online course benefited me in designing the next courses in the series.



Describe the process of launching the business.

The online resources that exist today make it quite easy to launch an online business. However, this does not guarantee that you will be successful. The Internet is a crowded space, and you need to stand out from the noise.

My first-course launch was dreadful. I followed all the guru’s advice to prepare a webinar, create excitement about the course, and all the required email sequences. I launched to crickets, and won’t do that again. But this was still a great learning opportunity.

With the commissioning industry, everyone is very busy on-site, and the timing of when they can take a course is not always right now. That is why I do not offer my courses using the launch method. My courses are available for purchase at any time, with no high-pressure launch, and learners can choose to take any course when it is the right time for them.

By the time I created my second course, I had a much larger email list. The second launch went much smoother since I had an engaged audience. I kept the course launch simple and offered it to my email list. There was lots of interest in the course and this simple approach went much better than the complex live webinar approach of the first launch.

Based on this, the third-course launch followed the simple launch to my email list, which had grown much bigger by this time as well.

With my three core courses in place, efforts continue to attract and retain customers.

Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?

I have explored Facebook marketing, blogging, YouTube videos, posting on social media platforms regularly, building my email list, hosting live webinars, accepting offers to be a speaker in webinars, and being attentive to all my learners' queries. So far, I’ve seen these strategies helpful in increasing traffic and sales.

Email marketing has been very helpful to nurture an online community. I send informative and relevant articles each week, never salesy, to help individuals learn about commissioning careers. The positive feedback and responses that I have received from them have been overwhelmingly positive

Hosting live webinars is another great way to connect with my audience. I can answer their questions and help them prepare in embarking on the real on-site commissioning challenges being faced today.

Facebook paid marketing allows a big audience from different countries to discover my online training.

Writing blogs has helped to increase my Google ranking. A large portion of my website traffic comes from Google searches and will continue to grow with time.

I have created and posted videos on my YouTube channel and gained an impressive number of subscribers. There is very limited commissioning information on YouTube, and there has been a lot of interest in the videos I am producing. The video creation process is much more demanding, but a fascinating and creative process that is very enjoyable.

Another breakthrough is all my courses are recognized and accredited by the Engineering Institute of Canada. This carries more weight and builds more trust in my audience. Commissioning and Startup is a worldwide qualified learning provider.

I bring existing customers back by keeping upgrading my courses. The positive feedback, valuable course content, and the knowledge I impart to my subscribers are a big help to keep my learners interested in the training courses I provide.

The online opportunities that exist today are amazing. Even from a few years ago, the tools and online resources that exist make it easier than ever to start an online business.

All of these things contribute to growing my audience. In starting a business, we should not hesitate to try new things. We have to invest our time, effort, and resources to open more opportunities for improvement. Don’t be stagnant. Always be innovative.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

The opportunities ahead are amazing, there has never been a better time to start an online business. Work has been forced online due to the pandemic, and people were instantly forced to become even more comfortable working online and accessing online resources.

When it comes to specialized training such as commissioning, this is not taught in typical colleges or universities. Specialized training like this can only be accessible online. And the online training market is exploding as people seek these specialized skills.

The power of the Internet allows you to reach a worldwide market. In my case, anyone in the world that is interested to learn about commissioning can access my training material. This is a huge opportunity to help people and change the industry for the better.

Growth-wise, I prefer to have a small team. The individuals that are working with me are an amazing and huge support to my success. I want to keep working with amazing people and not requiring a large team. The Internet makes this possible by providing some amazing resources and platforms.

The product line that I currently offer includes the 3 main disciplines for commissioning: mechanical, electrical, and automation. With these 3 core courses, I do not plan to create additional courses now, this could be a future ambition. Now my main goal is to get these courses in the hands of people that can benefit from learning about commissioning.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

The online opportunities that exist today are amazing. Even from a few years ago, the tools and online resources that exist make it easier than ever to start an online business.

However, even if it is easier today to start an online business, it is still challenging to be successful. The Internet is a large place, and it is easy to get lost in the noise. Just because you create something, don’t expect people to just find it. Creating something is only 10% of the effort, the other 90% relies on your online marketing. And online marketing is not just simply creating a post on Facebook, there is a whole other aspect of sales psychology that needs to be considered.

The best approach is to add a little value each day to what you are trying to achieve. Each day, things get progressively better until you get the magic of the Internet to work in your favor, and things become much easier. But keep pushing, you may be just a few steps away from getting that magic combination online.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

One of the first software packages you will need is a CRM to build your email list and communicate with your audience. ConvertKit is great for this. I have tried other CRM software packages, and ConverKit has everything that you need in a simple yet powerful interface.

I do require a course delivery platform. There are lots of options available, but I chose Kajabi. It is easy to use and has lots of more advanced features you may require.

To provide a more personal experience to learners, I use Bonjoro to provide a personal video to anyone who signs up for a course or completes a course. I want my students to feel a personal connection and to know that I am here to support them, and Bonjoro helps me do that.

For conversion rate optimization, I use Unbounce and Mouseflow. Unbounce lets me test different variants of the same page to optimize each user experience. Mouseflow lets me see how people are interacting with my assets to see what I need to improve.

Zapier is extremely helpful for automating functions of my business such as generating course certificates, online surveys with the help of Google Forms, and many more functions that are automatically taken care of in the background.

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

Podcasts are a wealth of free information when you are just starting to learn about the basic concepts of online marketing, regardless of the niche you are focusing on. Some of the podcasts to check out are:

Pat Flynn: Smart Passive Income - Understand the basic concepts and mindset required for online business

Guy Raz: How I Built This - Guy interviews the heavy hitters in the industry to discuss how they created the empires that they have

The Heather Sager Show - How to incorporate speaking into your online and offline presence

Tim Schmoyer: Video Creators - Everything you need to know about how to successfully grow your YouTube channel

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

Online marketing is a fascinating and challenging task. Whatever you are creating, that is only about 10% of your effort. The other 90% of your effort to be successful lies with online marketing. You can create the most amazing solution to people’s problems, but they need to find it to become interested in it. And this is the bulk of your effort.

There are so many options online to be discovered, but don’t assume that it will just happen. Before you even create your solution, plan how you will be discovered online and start to build an audience on that platform. You may find that this helps you understand better what your audience is looking for.

The Internet provides such amazing opportunities with the possibility to connect with the world. Harness the power of the Internet, the data it provides, and the ability to connect with a worldwide audience.

Where can we go to learn more?

If you are interested in learning the commissioning process, you can get started for free with my 3-Day Mini-Course. Go here to get started now.

To learn more about Commissioning and Startup:

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!