Cal NewportI recently interviewed Cal Newport a Georgetown University professor of computer science about his new book entitled “So Good They Can’t Ignore You“.   Cal’s book title is taken from advice that comedian Steve Martin once gave to aspiring entertainers and that was to “be so good they can’t ignore you.”.

Cal bunks the advice that we should follow our passion, or do what we love and the money will follow.  He cites that in Steve Jobs’ famed address to the graduating class of Stanford that he advocated to “follow your passion”.  Cal states that the evidence shows that this advice will do your career more harm than good.  Cal reveals that loving what you do is a wise goal, but following your passions isn’t the way to get there.   ” Stop trying to figure out what you are passionate about, instead the secret to building a career you love is to develop rare and valuable skills that you can then leverage to take control of your livelihood. Get good, and the passion will follow.  Not the other way around.

In “So Good They Can’t Ignore You”  Cal presents studies and compelling examples that expose the truth about how people end up loving what they do.  He cites experience, autonomy, competence and relatedness each play a much bigger role in motivation and job satisfaction and his roadmap for getting you there consist of four easy rules: 1) Don’t Follow Your Passion 2) Be So Good They Can’t Ignore You (The Importance of Skill) 3) Turn Down a Promotion (Importance of Control) 4) Think Small, Act Big( The Importance of Mission).

If you take Cal’s advice he states that you will create career capital, and science tells us that the key to loving what you do is to have important traits such as autonomy, competence, creativity and a sense of impact in your working life. These traits are rare and valuable. Basic economics tells us that if you want these traits in your career, you mist build up rare and valuable skills to offer in return. In other words, until you are very good at something, you shouldn’t expect a very good job.

If you are new to the job market or a seasoned veteran the advice that Cal presents in “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” is compelling and sound.  I highly recommend reading Cal’s new book, and applying the principles and advice he has for the reader.   I

f you would like more information about Cal Newport you can visit his blog by clicking here. I hope you enjoy my interview with author Cal Newport about his new book “So Good They Can’t Ignore You.”


 

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.
 

Dan PallottaI personally appreciate the position author Dan Pallotta has articulated about the unjust discriminatory rules that society imposes on charities.  In his new book entitled “Charity Case-How The Non-Profit Community Can Stand Up For Itself and Really Change the World.” Dan states that virtually everything our society teaches about charity is backwards.  The donating public is told to measure the effectiveness and moral character of charities by how little they spend on “overhead” never being taught that overhead is really investment without which the nonprofit sector can never hope to solve massive social problems.  The media and government unwittingly perpetuate these views, condemning charities that invest in behind-the scenes infrastructure or attempt to lure talent away form the for-profit sector.

I personally have volunteered thousands of hours on charity boards helping to organize and raise money to assist with the funding of this program or that, and believe me the task is a challenging one at best.  Charities are always fight the battle to attract and keep good loyal and committed donors, and those donors frequently are judging the charity on how they control their expenses, and how much of their donated dollar is going to work.  Believe me just like any other business, charities can waste money but the charities I have been involved with have been lean mean fighting machines and truly use the donated dollars quite effectively.   I understand what Dan is saying in “Charity Case” is that the public sentiment has always been one of suspicion. While we spend money with other private-sector businesses and never once give a thought to how they spend their money on expenses or advertising as long as we receive the good or service we purchased.

In my interview with Dan we speak about his movement to help reposition charities in the eyes of the public.  Dan has a very interesting proposition about building an anti-defamation league for charities, the purpose would be to unite charities and create an advertising campaign that would inform the public about all the good that they are doing.  A great example is the ad campaign that “Got Milk” did that was funded by the  Milk Advisory Board which is comprised of dairy cattleman who have united and created advisory board to help build a positive image about milk.  Dan states that charities have never united together, and put their resources to work building a positive image for themselves with the public.  I personally believe this is a great idea, and one that is long overdue.

 

If you are interested in learning more about how Dan plans to help the charities of the world unite and overcome the ill-conceived views of the public I encourage you to read both “Charity Case” and Dan’s previous book “Uncharitable“.  You can also learn more by visiting his website by clicking here.  Enjoy this great interview with author and activists Dan Pallotta.

 

 

Cindy WigglesworthWe have all read and heard about the work of Daniel Goldman regarding Emotional Intelligence, but now what I believe could prove to be equally important is the measurement of our  spiritual intelligence.  Author  Cindy Wigglesworth has just published a book entitled “The 21 Skills of Spiritual Intelligence“which  provides insight into our spiritual intelligence.  As part of my inquiry Cindy  allowed me to take the 170 question analysis that she diligently developed over many years. The quiz was quite revealing and is certainly a tool that will be quite useful both personally and in the work environment. (For more information on the click here to be directed to her website.)

Cindy defines spiritual intelligence as “the ability to behave with wisdom and compassion while maintaining inner and outer peace regardless of the situation.” Wow, now thats  a skill set  that most corporations would love to instill in their employees.  Cindy states that “transcending our smaller nature and growing into our full potential as human beings is the most important and fulfilling thing we can do with our lives.  The set of skills that are collectively known as spiritual intelligence are designed to help you become more fully who you are, to continue to grow and develop, and to live with greater consciousness, direction, wisdom and compassion.

Cindy uses her newly defined spiritual intelligence in conjunction with the other identified intelligences, physical, cognitive, emotional intelligence.  When combined and analyzed they become a powerful tool that can assist the management of organizations in defining how employees will best work, inspire and collaborate with one another.  There are 21 skills that have been identified as part of our spiritual intelligence , and those skills have been classified into four (4) quadrants.  Self-Awareness, Universal Awareness, Self Mastery, Social Mastery/Spiritual Presence.  To better understand the spiritual intelligence model I recommend that you click here to be directed to Cindy’s Deep Change website.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with Cindy Wigglesworth, the author of “The 21 Skills of Spiritual Intelligence“.  You can click here to watch a great PBS interview in which Cindy provides the viewer with insight into her personal philosophy and history.

 

Dan PallottaIn my interview with Dan Pallotta we discuss a his newly designed program called “Change Course“.  I have interviewed Dan previously about his book entitled “Uncharitable-How Restraints on Non-Profits Undermine Their Potential.”   Dan Pallotta has been involved in  lifting up the profile of non-profits for years.  At age 21 he organized a bike ride across America to raise awareness about world hunger,  he also launched a for profit enterprise that was responsible for developing AID’s rides as well as the 3-Day Brest Cancer walks.  Needless to say Dan Pallotta is not stranger to the world of non-profit.

Dan realized that many people are torn mentally and emotionally about where to spend their time.  So many of us want to help in the non-profit sector, yet we feel that we are not doing enough or don’t have the time.   We want to know how to make the transition and feel comfortable with our decisions. This boot camp for idealists, activists and social entrepreneurs and anyone exploring how to make a good living and a big difference will help anyone seeking to have fulfilling work while making a living.  In Change Course, Dan and his team are going to guide the attendees and inform them about: 1) the pros and cons of a non-profit career 2) making a difference in every moment 3) duty and responsibility vs. joy and opportunity 4) social enterprise vs. social entrepreneurship 5) maximizing the impact of personal philanthropy and much more.

If you are like most people you may want to get involved with charitable work, but  could or would you every make a career of it?   Dan will help guide attendees in determining what their options are, as well as help resolve the dilemmas that many face in making non-profit work a career.   If you want to learn more about the Change Course, please listen to this informative podcast.  You can also click here to be directed to the Change Course website which will provide you with the information you will need to make your decision about attending the course.

 

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.

Michael HyattIn my recent interview with Michael Hyatt the  CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing, and the author of a wonderful new book entitled “Platform-Get Noticed in a Noisy World” we discuss what is required for someone to get noticed in this very noisy and crowded world we live in today.

Michael is one of the top business bloggers and holds the #1 spot as a Leadership blogger. No doubt he is extremely well qualified to speak about getting noticed and building a platform.

He states that “competition has never been greater and people are more distracted than ever.  That being said, never before have there been so many ways you can connect with people if you do it right.  Michael states that there are two critical parts of the success equation: a compelling product (the what) and a significant platform (the who). 1) Create products that people would love to use 2) Create products that solve problems in unexpected ways 3) Create product that exceed your customers’ expectations.

We also speak about what Michael refers to as the WOW Experience, of which he states has some combination of the following ten (10) elements:

Surprise , Anticipation, Resonance, Transcendence, Clarity, Presence, Universality,  Evangelism, Longevity, Privilege.    He says that being successful means becoming the expert in recognizing WOW when it shows up.  More importantly, it means being able to recognize it when it is absent–and insisting that you ask yourself to deliver it.

Michaels’ new book is loaded with tips and ideas to help anyone who is attempting to develop a platform.  What I really enjoy about Platform, Get Noticed in a Noisy World is that the chapters are short 3-4 pages, easy to digest and filled with very useful tips and information that you can put to use immediately.  If you are someone wanting to get noticed in this noisy world, then reading Michael’s new book is a must.

If you would like to download a free chapter and watch an informational video about the book, then click here to learn more.  You can also click here to be directed to the Facebook page.

 

Enjoy this wonderful interview with author Michael Hyatt.

 

Gerald AquilaIf you are a Mac user, then you are in luck.  I recently came across an amazing productivity software by the name of Firetask that I personally believe will help almost any busy person get organized.  I read a magazine entitled “Productivity”, and it is loaded with great ideas, stories and recommendations on software productivity tools and they mentioned Firetask software in one of the issues of the magazine.

Firetask is a company based in  Austria, and in my podcast with Gerald Aquila the founder we speak about the benefits and features of the Firetask software he developed with his partner.  Gerald is also the founder of OnePoint, a comprehensive project management system, which by the way is very well designed and a cloud based project management software.

Firetask is exceptionally well designed, an the user interface is wonderful—very intuitive.   Firetask is simple, fun and easy to use with a set of features that any busy person will appreciate. It allows you to create and manage projects as well as view the your tasks in what Gerald refers to as the organize view.

Firetask follows the system thinking that David Allen has made popular called “Getting Things Done“.  It is also customizable with allowing you to name categories as well as drag and drop your created tasks into the categories sections.  There is a wonderful calendar view allowing you to take a birds eye view of your tasks and projects on a monthly basis.   The software  built in filters, so that you can view just the tasks that are top of mind.

Firetask has something that Gerald refers to as a Scratchboard.  This is designed to assist you when something comes across your desk, and you don’t have time to deal with it, just place it in the Scratchboard and save it until you can reference it and categorize the item.   The best part of Firetask is that it is easy, fun and very intuitive to use.

If you are an iPad user Firetask has the companion application for the iPad which synchronizes with the desktop version using a cloud based system.  Believe me you are going to love this simple, inexpensive productivity tool from Firetask.

 

For more information please click here to be directed to the Firetask website, or send an email to firetask@gmail.com Gerald and his team will be more than happy to assist you.

Enjoy this great interview with Gerald Aquila the founder of Firetask and Onepoint

 

Jamie WhealI recently conducted this wonderful podcast with Jamie Wheal about an amazing project that he and Steven Kotler the co-author of Abundance are working on.  I was first introduced to Jamie by Steven Kotler. Subsequent to my interview with Steven we started a wonderful dialogue and it lead to him informing me about “The Flow Genome Project“.  I was so enthralled with what they were working on that I invited Jamie his partner to do this podcast to inform my listeners about their mission.

I am certain that many of you are aware of the term “Flow” made aware to the world by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi the author of the book “Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience“.  He developed the term “flow states” to describe the state of peak experience which some will seek to recreate at any cost because it’s so enjoyable.   Flow is defined as the state of being where time slows, self vanishes, action and awareness merge into one–often referred to as peak experience, runner’s high, being in the zone or dropping in the pocket.

Jamie and Steven are on a mission to study flow states in what they refer to as “The Flow Dojo“.  They want to hack the flow state, and determine what physically, mentally and emotionally is occurring to the body when someone has these peak experiences.  In other words they want to map the genome of Flow, which if they can do this would be an amazing feat.

The information and data received as a result of studying people who attain this states of consciousness would be extremely valuable because flow states are known to optimize performance, enhance creativity, drive innovation, accelerate learning, amplify memory and underpin happiness itself.   If they could recreate these “flow states” and know what is required to do so, imagine what could happen in our business world.  This data and process would become an extreme advantage to any employer that was involved helping their employees achieve and sustain the “state of flow.”

Jamie and Steven have created a website dedicated to this project, and you can access it by clicking here to learn more about “The Flow Genome Project“.  At the website you will find articles, videos and you can read more about the “Flow Dojo”.

In my estimation this project takes human performance and mastery to a whole new level.  If Steven and Jamie can quantify their research and hack the state of flow, this would be an amazing breakthrough.

 

If you are interested in getting involved, please sign up at their website and you will be contacted with more information.  I hope you enjoy this great interview with Jamie Wheal about the “Flow Genome Project”.