Have you tried to capture someone’s attention these days? Do feel like to have to set off a flair in front of their face just to get a few minutes of their focused attention? That is the way that I feel sometimes.

I am certain that in our world today many of us has a bad case of Attention Deficit Disorder, and it is not all the fault of the individuals.  Our world and the things in it that require our attention has increased exponentially.  As a matter of fact we use to speak about Moore’s Law and that the computing power would double every two years, now who know how frequently it is doubling today?

Google receives 4,000,000 searches every minute.  For more fun stats on the amount of data we deal with daily,  just click here to be directed to Data Never Sleeps 2.0 graphic and article. 

Ben Parr the author of Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention has been studying how to capture people’s attention.  He has come up with some very interesting facts, there are three types of attention-immediate, short and long term attention.  He also states that you can capture all three of these types of attention with what Ben refers to as the “seven captivation triggers.  In my interview with Ben we explore the captivation triggers and the research behind them.

I recommend that you listen to and get a copy of Ben’s book if you are in the business trying to capture the attention of your customers, or just your fellow workers.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with Ben Parr on his new book “Captivology“.   You can learn more by visiting his website by clicking here, or Facebook or Twitter.

You might be familiar with all the buzz around something called the “Business Model Canvas”.  There are currently three books in the series which started with “Business Model Generation” then “Business Model You” now a new book ” Value Proposition Design“.  So why the interest from the business communities in this interesting way of developing a business model.  Simply put, it is engaging, inclusive ,compelling and it works.

Authors Alex Osterwalder, Yves Pingeur, Greg Bernarda and Alan Smith are the dynamic team behind the business model canvas.  I recently had the pleasure of having a dialogue with Alex Smith the brains behind the book designs, which I might add are a big reason for the success of the books.

During our dialogue we discuss the key elements in creating a great value for customers, we also get into the steps necessary to create the value proposition canvas: Customer Profile, Value Map and Fit all  extremely important considerations in the developing a any new product design.  Alan and his colleagues refer to gain creators, and pain relievers as one of the most important elements in developing great designs.

While this all might sound simple it is daunting to create a new product, test it and know that you are creating something that is really needed and wanted by your customers.  Developing something in a vacuum is crazy,  where your perception of what will relieve your customers pains is exactly that a perception and not the reality of the situation.  Developing then testing your product is so important, I speak from experience I have developed a few products and testing is so important so you can gain feedback.

Alan and his team have recently released a cloud based software system allowing teams to collaborate on developing a business model canvases, it is called Strategyzer.  In my humble opinion I have never seen software as simple as Strategyzer, providing results in minutes.  If you work with a team and you are in the process of developing a new product or service I would highly recommend checking out this amazing new cloud based software.

I encourage you to listen closely to Alan Smith as he guides the listener to a better understanding of Business Model Canvas and Value Proposition Design.  If you want to just click on the links provided below that will take you to the related websites associated with Value Proposition Design.

Value Proposition Design


I am certain that the talk around the water cooler doesn’t default to leadership in this country, but I am certain that it is a topic of discussion more than we think.  It seems like everywhere we turn we see leaders falling from grace due to improprieties in their judgement and or just not doing an adequate job.  What is happening?  Is there a lack of competent leaders with great skills and strong emotional intelligence.

In my recent interview with author Jeffrey Krames we discuss his new book entitled ” Lead with Humility-12 Leadership Lessons from Pope Francis”.   What is it about the new Pope that is attracting lost Catholics back to the church, and his acceptance by the congregation at one of the highest in history.  According to Jeffrey Krames Pope Francis possess amazing leadership skills such as  1) Leading with Humility, he states that authentic humility empowers leaders like no other leadership quality.  How this translates for business leaders is never use you position of leadership for selfish reasons, and make yourself accessible to your employees.   2) Smell Like Your Flock: which means to immerse yourself deeply into whatever group you lead to aspire to lead, in a meaningful way.

I know you are going to thoroughly enjoy my interview with author Jeffrey Krames, you will also learn more about the traits and qualities that Pope Francis possess that make him one of the greatest leaders in modern history of the Catholic Church.

To learn more about Jeffrey Krames and his other books please click here to learn more, you can also learn more about the book by clicking here to be directed to the Facebook landing page.

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing author Lisa Nirell.  She has another new book that has just been released entitled ” The Mindful Marketer.”  

In Lisa’s new book she questions traditional marketing methodology, and provides the reader with alternative ways to implement effective marketing strategies.   Lisa states that the traditional chief marketing officers are facing extinction because of the use of big data, and how it is transforming the way we work as marketers.  She states that that modern marketing leaders are expected to be tech savvy, data driven brand ambassadors on the vanguard of change.

I appreciate Lisa’s approach to this book.  She exposes how our always-on mindset and the consistent need for speed and innovation has created an environment of mindlessness.  She states we need to stop, breathe and reflect mindfully on future opportunities and daily decisions if we are to effectively make deep meaningful connections with our customers.    Lisa recommend a “middle path”, a nexus between data-fueled, analytical thinking and creativity to a humanistic approach to marketing.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with a leader in the marketing industry.  If you want to learn more about Lisa you can click here to be directed to her website.


I have been working on a capital campaign project with a local nonprofit, and while I have done this kind of work before I wanted to reach out to the experts and get their advice and guidance.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Andrea Kihlstedt the author of “Capital Campaigns Strategies that Work.”  She has consulted and run numerous campaigns for nonprofits and with tremendous success.  In our interview together we speak about her book and the strategies that have worked for her and other so successfully.   As Andrea states capital campaigns grow out of a “big idea” and help to springboard and organization and breath life back into the donors.

If you are in the middle of a capital campaign or about to embark upon a big campaign project, then I highly recommend that you listen to the words of wisdom from author and consultant Andrea Kihlstedt.  If you want to learn more about her consulting business please click here to be directed to her website.   

Erica WoolwayIn my interview with co-author Erika Woolway we discuss her new book entitled ” Practice Perfect-43 Rules for Getting Better at Getting Better“.  We have all heard the old adage “practice makes perfect”, and Erika and her other co-authors Doug Lemov and Katie Yezzi have studied and observed some of the best in the educational fields, authors, lawyers and surgeons in ascertaining  what makes people pros in their respective fields.

The “how to” rules are outlined in “Practice Perfect”, such as the counterintuitive rule that says: don’t concentrate on your weakness, practice what you are good at.   The authors state that effective practice requires a systematic attentiveness to participants rate of success.  “You haven’t taught it until they’ve learned it.” Coach Wooden like to say, and the best teachers test to see how much student have learned–a process called “checking for understanding”–every few seconds. They realize that lack of understanding builds on itself and get harder to fix the longer you wait, so they are always asking themselves, “Are students getting it?”

The authors borrow a term that is utilized in Dan and Chip Heath’s book entitled “Switch” and this concept is called Bright Spots.  This concept refers to the often overlooked and under-leveraged power of  what works.  It’s easy, they note to bewail what’s wrong rather than see the power of what’s right.  The authors utilize this term to remind us that in a practice setting, immense value can be realized by focusing on things participants are already good at– and making them even better.

If you are interested in learning all of the rules of getting better I encourage you to click here to be directed to the author website, or click here to watch to a wonderful Youtube video with author Doug Lemov, Erica Woolway and Katie Yezzi discussing the rules.

Enjoy this wonderful interview with co-author Erica Woolway.


Simon MainwaringIt is not often that I come across a book and author that has life transforming ideas, and ideas that I believe will have a positive impact on our world.

I recently interviewed author Simon Mainwaring about his new book entitled “We First-How Brands & Consumers Use Social Media to Build A Better World.”  His  book is not only a must read for anyone in business, but for anyone who is part of the socially responsible movement and wants to impact the world for the better.

Simon really believes that we need to transform the engine of capitalism  because our current structure is not performing in ways that benefit the whole. As the title of the book eludes, we need to move to a “We First” instead of a ” Me First” mindset.   He points out that the book is not about doing away with capitalism, is is about recognizing the advantages of capitalism as a generator of progress and prosperity, but at the same time acknowledging the mounting criticisms–if left unchecked, a capitalist system will run off it own rails.  Many noted economists, thought leaders, and social visionaries around the world are all recognizing that capitalism has become dysfunctional.  It has lost is way as an effective, self-regulating, and sustainable economic system. It has devolved into a single-minded pursuit of profit and wealth for a small elite at the expense of the overall society.”

We First points out that the unresolved tension between self-interest and selfishness is no a philosophical debate.  It is at the root of corporate and individual economic behavior, shaping how brands and consumers participate in capitalism on a daily basis. It affects the choices we make about our use of natural resources, or habits of consumption, our views of investment and profit, our attitudes toward both poverty and ethical business conduct, and the political debates that ultimately determine what type of society we want to live in.

If you are interested in reshaping your personal beliefs, and join a movement that will have a positive impact on how we consume good and services then I highly recommend that you read and study Simon’s new book “We First“.  He also has an amazing course which is both available on the Internet, and there is an upcoming live event in the Los Angeles area in March of 2013.

If you are interested in  Simon’s course offering please click here to be directed to a landing page with more information about the event.  I will be taking the course and attending the live event, you will not want to miss this opportunity.    If you purchase admission to the on-line course you are entitled to attend the live event in Los Angeles in March of 2013, and you are eligible to bring a non-profit of your choice at absolutely no cost.

You can also watch a very cool presentation that Simon did at TED Talks by clicking this link.


I hope you enjoy this great interview with a man that is going to change our world, through influencing our choices, consumption and behaviors.


Terri SjodinI don’t believe their is a person alive that has not been put in the awkward position of being asked “what do you do?”; and for one reason or another we can’t seem to get the answer out to our mouth in a short simple statement.  In Terri Sjodin’s new book entitled ” Small Message, Big Impact-The Elevator Speech Effect” Terri guides and directs not only the sales and marketing person, but anyone how to crate a effective elevator speech.

As Terri states ” In this day and age of information overload and busier schedules, we’re limited to fewer opportunities to get people attention, and often only 140 characters to get our message across.  Attention must be earned, and faster than ever, or your opportunity will be gone before you know it.  Whether you’re faced with a chance encounter, a one-on-one meeting or presentation for thousands, only a well-crafted elevator speech can take your message and bridge the gap between the goals you set and the results you want.”

In my interview with Terri she provides some of the steps required to build an effective elevator speech.  She speaks about case, creativity, and delivery the three fundamentals of developing a great elevator speech.  Terri states you have to have s solid and persuasive case, along with a thoughtful, creative and intriguing message combined with a delivery which is genuine and enthusiastic. Once you complete Terri book “Small Message, Big Impact” you will have crafted a compelling message.  She takes you through the process and provides examples of wonderfully crafted elevator speeches.  If you are someone who is consistently dealing with the public either in sales, marketing or customer service Terri new book is a must read.

Terri also has a wonderful book trailer that you can watch by clicking here, or you can access forms and tools on how to develop your own elevator speech by clicking here.  I hope you enjoy this wonderful podcast with author Terri Sjodin.


Michael HollaufI have recently been doing podcasts with organization and authors that have productivity tools that I believe are excellent personal growth and mastery applications.  I was introduced to Michael Hollauf the founder of MindMeister through Gerald Aquila the founder of FireTask, and we speak in this podcast  about an amazing cloud based application for mind mapping that he developed with his team called MindMeister.  This application is  so popular that within less than 6 years his user base has grown to over 1.6 million users.

If you are not familiar with mind mapping, it was made popular by British psychologist Tony Buzan.  What is important to remember about mind mapping is that it allows our non-linear brains that normally  think randomly to be able to capture the wonderful ideas, thoughts and inspirations on paper or the computer in a visual map.

Mind Mapping and the use of computer technology over the last 10 years had really excelled, and the cloud based application that Michael and his team has developed is a wonderful example of a collaborative cloud based application that makes the job of capturing ideas and thoughts with a team of people a snap.

A mind map starts usually with one central word or idea, then branches out from this initial concept. The branches then turn into sub-branches and you continue to develop the mind map as your thoughts flow and are recorded onto the mind map. It is like a cognitive map of sorts.  I have links to some of the samples that MindMeister clients have shared just to give you an idea of what is possible using the MindMeister cloud based application. Just click here for a few examples.

The practical tools that would not be available using paper vs a cloud based system are that you can link notes, hypertext links to website, video, graphics, pictures almost anything that will help you in developing your brainstorming session and making it more comprehensive in nature.   The best part about MindMeister is the ability to share your ideas with others on a team and publish your map for their feedback.

If you are in business or a student, then utilizing a cloud based mind mapping software is a wonderfully practical tool.  I highly recommend the MindMeister cloud based system.  If you want more information or would like to watch a few training videos about how to use the system please click here.  You can also download a 30 day free trial by clicking here.

I hope you enjoy this great interview with the founder of MindMeister Michael Hollauf.