Are You Ready To Lead?

According to Seth Godin’s book, Tribes, leadership is needed now more than ever.  Ever since I started listening to it, I have been challenged and motivated by each word he speaks out.  I’m anxious to purchase the book as soon as I’m done listening so that I can underline the phrases an iPod doesn’t give you the luxury to do.

IDEAS

While Tribes has many great ideas, in particular a great discussion on faith versus religion and why we need it (perhaps not like you think), I’m still mesmerized and yet wondering why a book like this has not surfaced in a while.  I grew up with a father who had many ideas but chose to play it safe as a bodyman and work an honest living to provide for his family.  I am always humbled by my father and his integrity.  But at the same time I wonder where my father (and his family) would have been had my father acted on just one of his ideas.  Where would you be and what ideas have you let slip by?

VISUALS

Tribes mentions a few hundred times the need to become a leader and goes into a few details on what that means.  Me, I’m visual, so that’s one reason why I need to buy the book.  But another visual aid I’ve come across recently is a wonderful blog/company called IQ Matrix.  The author, Adam Sicinski has put together an incredible visual methodology to show what various traits, vocations – and even books look like.  Let’s be honest, it’s a mind map; but for those who have never heard of such a thing, it’s a highly powerful technique many use as a memory device.  The example below is a snippet from a larger matrix on Excellent Leadership.

A sample of what Leadership looks like

A sample of what Leadership looks like

My goal is not to steal any thunder from Seth or IQ Matrix.  Rather it is to bridge the two thoughts and help the cause – building leaders.  One of my favorite parts of the overall matrix (not pictured) is on a leader being a visionary:  An Extraordinary Leader is a visionary. They Think BIG and picture what they want in their minds with clarity and purpose. Moreover they share these visions and plans with others in order to move and inspire them into action for one common purpose and cause.”

As Zig Ziglar is quoted as saying, “You are the only person on earth who can use your ability.” What abilities do you have that remain untapped?  Invariably you possess that next best idea but you’re not sure where to start.  Today’s web and its many opportunities to connect on tools such as Twitter are great launching points.  Lead.  We need you.

Does this visual representation help you want to become a leader?  For leaders, does this provide a check list or methodology to sharpen up any weak areas and improve on your strong traits that much more?  Tell me what you feel are leadership traits not represented on the overall matrix and let’s see if a supplemental list might be generated – want to help?

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Blogging – It’s about community…and coffee

Computer, coffee cup holder, and community provider

Computer, coffee cup holder, and community provider

When you think of blogging, what comes to mind?  For me, blogging brings to mind community and coffee.  Let me explain.  As I’ve written before, I’m a big fan of Joffrey’s coffee.  What started off as a Java Beta Test turned into a free coffee sample for this new blogger and about 1,500 others to try their product (by the way – the test is over in the event you try to still find it).  The Web 2.0 strategy behind it all was a great example of how the web can be used to entertain while reward AND not be a bother.  It was permission based; pull and not push.  A few months later the outcome of Joffrey’s Beta Test led to a new flavor, Coffee 2.0.  Clever idea – AND a great product.
At basically 5 cents a cup, this varietal will kick your morning into high gear and has a very smooth flavor.

REACHING OUT

OK, so in that promotion, not only did I learn about a great product I would have never been exposed to, I was also welcomed into the Blogosphere because any blogger who signed up on the Beta Test was sent a free sample.  I was reinforced that blogging has a few perks aside from a few kind comments.  I was exposed to community.
I was also exposed to Adam Singer, the digital marketer behind Joffrey’s promotion.  Well…not exposed literally.  I took advantage of the community feel that blogging gives you and I reached out to Adam and commended him for a great promotion.  He emailed me back in about 10 minutes and a friendship was formed.  Later I found out that Adam has a blog of his own and is an accomplished musician as well.  I now read his blog, The Future Buzz and I enjoy his music.  And from time to time we’ll Twitter or email each other.  Coffee brought community.

GREAT PEOPLE IN WEB 2.0

Had I never taken the initiative to start my own blog I would have never come across a great new marketing tool(s) in social media.  I would also be lacking from a great community I’ve come to really enjoy and from knowing the many individuals who have been kind to me and many others.  I’m talking about people like John Wall and Christopher Penn from Marketing Over Coffee; CC Chapman from Managing the Grey (thanks for the card); Lisa Johnson from Reach Group, Albert Maruggi from Marketing Edge; Chris Brogan – Social Media Extraordinaire; Jim Tome of eHealthcare Marketing, Mark McGuinness now of Lateral Action, Whitney Hoffman of LDPodcast, Zena Weist of Nothin’ But SocNet, Beth Kanter of Beth’s Blog, and of course, Adam Singer, who I mentioned earlier, with The Future Buzz.  Now, I could have mentioned a few more (and I deeply apologize if I left anyone out), but these individuals I expressly mention because they typify SOCIAL media.  They preach it.  They live it.  They help it.  They advocate it.  And I know this personally because I’ve gotten a comment(s) or email(s) back from each. What kind of cool world is this!  Between blogs, podcasts and the social networks, these are the best of the best.

It will be a long time, perhaps never, that I would ever aspire to the level of prowess these individuals exhibit.  But as a role model to me, I hope I can return the favor and help those with what I have learned (which is a lot more than I knew a year ago).

MAKE THE COMMUNITY WHAT YOU WANT IT TO BE

A Community Connected to Many

A Community Connected to Many

We are a community.  Whether blogger or blog reader, there are millions of us who write or read and pass on our thoughts, opinions and expertise to benefit mankind.  Now more than ever we need this kindness that is exhibited online and make it a reality offline.  Akoha looks to lead this charge of making the world a better place and I eagerly anticipate the public release of their “pay it forward” mission cards.  But each of us must participate in that charge as well.  Just remember that when the guy in the lane next to you cuts you off – don’t allow his actions to cause you to do the same.  With the same good intentions you have when you blog or comment, take those same intentions and put them in the real world.

Our current economic situation is forcing us to take a good hard look at the mess that’s been made.  Because checks and balances were not correctly in place, a new level of accountability will undoubtedly be put in place.  As we look to the future, we must rely on each other, just as our 2.0 Community already does, and start being more accountable to how we treat each other in the real world as well.  Start tomorrow and make the world a friendler place – it all starts with a cup of coffee.

Top 10 Ways Twitter Could Improve

Are You Addicted?

Are You Addicted?

If you’re like me, you enjoy using Twitter.  It’s fast, interactive and you can shut it off, unlike email, when it becomes to be too much.  Most people I know who use Twitter have a semi-addiction, so shutting it off might be harder for some.  Anywho, I thought I’d put together my list of improvements and see what you come up with as well.  Can’t hurt, right?

  1. Larger bio section – limited section now allows little to be found in common with each other
  2. Protect my updates abolished – are you kidding me?  This is Twitter, not Quiver.  If you need your updates protected, call someone on your phone; otherwise join the community!
  3. Enlarged profile area – additional areas could be added to list your industry, marital status, hobbies, etc. – again, more ways to seek commonalities
  4. Meeting rooms – not a new concept, but you search and find areas of interest and are able to chat with a segment of your group and others on things like football or croquet (hey, you play, so don’t deny it!)
  5. Criteria to kick out those who incessantly tell you every painstaking detail of their day – watching TV with my cat, painting my nails, sorting my baseball cards – give me a break.
  6. Tags for posts that merit special attention or good links so that others can seek and find them
  7. Improved user interface – the web-based window is large, chunky and not practical
  8. For those using the web based product – could you auto-refresh the window – please?
  9. Alphabetical listing of those you follow and those who follow you
  10. Finally, another user interface suggestion – an edit/format bar that allows BOLD type to stress your point and a place to insert pictures (hey, they are worth 1000 words, but I guess that’s 860 too many…)

So, that’s my list, so far.  I’m sure there are many more who have used Twitter much longer and have many and probably better suggestions – what would you add?

The Greatest Marketer – a proud father

Blog for Fathers

Blog for Fathers

The continuation of Web 2.0 evolves and evolves.  And, before you know it, the common man is able to achieve great things, in addition to being a father.  Like networking with each other, even those considered famous in social media.

Chris Brogan, veteran of social media and co-founder of PodCamp has started a new blog of a different sort.  Dad-O-Matic is a blog for fathers (and mothers) to trade stories, provide advice and give a forum to talk about our children and what we’ve learned.  Chris tweeted about this (on Twitter, what else?!) a few days ago, looking for authors and I was only too happy to oblige.  If you’re a father like me and enjoy marketing your best creation (your kids), then take a look at Dad-O-Matic.  Who knows, we might all learn something.

Twitter, Tweets and Twime to Twalk

Twime to Twitter

It's Twime to Twitter

OK, I admit it.  I’ve been pushing off from joining Twitter for quite some time.  I’m not sure of my aversion other than seeing it as another In-box that I simply did not want to add.  But then a friend of mine posted this blog about Twitter and I admired a few of the points he mentioned including its worth with organizational use.  As I continue to explore and wonder at Web 2.0 initiatives, I’m anxious to follow my readers and see what they are a-Twitter about.

Scoble put out a great piece about following versus being a follower.  I’m not so picky.  I just like to immerse myself in new technology and experiment for myself.  I’m from the Show-Me State after all (Go Tigers!), so I’d like to see how things go for myself.

So, please, CLICK HERE to follow me and I’ll follow you.

It’ll be fun, right?

C’mon – you know you wanna do it.

All the Big Kids are doing it…