Your passions – the stuff that gets you enthusiastic – the things you’re interested in… These are your best bits.
Too many of us spend too much of our lives with our best bits wrapped up by the daily grind of the what we do. In this 18 minute talk, Simon Sinek is convinced that if we put our best bits out the front where they belong, people will want more.
“Sell to people who believe what you believe – hire people who believe what you believe” is the mantra of Simon, the “Start with why” guy.
If you’re interested in engaging family, friends, colleagues or customers with what you do, then grab your best bits and watch this.
Thanks to Treffyn & Renee, who independent of each other sent me this.
Few people have had as powerful an influence on my life as futurist and educator, Jan Lee Martin. It is with a heavy heart that I write this, because last night, Jan passed away.
This biography I found on the web introduces you to Jan as a professional, if you don’t already know her by reputation:
Jan Lee Martin has always lived in the future. As public relations manager for IBM in New Zealand in the 1960s, she participated in the early excitement of the computer revolution. She was a manager at a time when young people, and especially young women, were not expected to be managers. And she began a career in public relations when very few people knew what that meant. (She says many still don’t.)
For nearly 20 years she ran her own public relations consultancy in Sydney, working with senior executives of government, private and not-for-profit organizations to improve their internal and external communication with stakeholders. It was when she sold that consultancy, and began to explore the boundaries of change, that she met the field of future studies. In the mid-90s she and some of Australia’s leading futurists established the Futures Foundation as an independent centre for learning about the future.
Seven years later, the Foundation merged with the Future of Work Foundation, and Jan was able to hand over the chair and concentrate on other activities. For some years she continued to edit Future News and contribute to the website, and she still works on special projects with colleagues in the futuring community.
She is a regular speaker at conferences in Australia and elsewhere; has worked as a senior executive coach for a major bank; occasionally writes for media; and maintains her family and community interests in Sydney and at Pearl Beach on the Central Coast of New South Wales. She has a special interest in changing ideas of what we mean by success; in changes in the way we measure performance (and success); and in the changing relationships between organizations and others in their host communities.
Jan Lee Martin is co-chair of the Millennium Project in Australia (a WFUNA organization), a professional member of the World Future Society and a member of the World Futures Studies Federation. She has contributed to many publications including the Australia and New Zealand Public Relations Manual, the standard text in communication degree courses; and The Knowledge Base of Futures Studies, the standard text in futures studies degree courses. She is a member of the editorial board of the international Journal of Futures Studies and is listed in the World Future Society’s Directory of people who write and speak about the future.
Jan Lee Martin is co-chair of the Millennium Project in Australia, a professional member of the World Future Society and a member of the World Futures Studies Federation.
No biography can ever capture a person’s essence, and this is especially true of Jan… She was so deeply committed to understanding our world and helping make it better. It was that spirit that I found so inspiring.
For 30 years Jan Lee Martin and Peter Lazar have been a dynamic duo – two communication professionals who, having established successful public relations practices, became powerful advocates of the application of foresight and futures studies… Playing leadership roles in the establishment of a futurist community in Australia.
A decade ago, Jan and Peter came and spoke to Communication students at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst. I was in the audience, and their presentations, at the intersection of communication and futures were life changing. For me, I went from believing that I would be a communication professional (working in organisational communication), to discovering a new possibility – helping organisations grow in all facets by collaborating with them in pursuing inspiring futures.
A story about Jan from the boardroom
A few years later, Jan was speaking at a boardroom presentation of partners at Ernst & Young. I was a budding futurist and she was kind enough to include me so I could come and see her in action. I reflect on this moment because it goes some small way towards capturing what made her so inspiring:
Initially, the audience (mostly men) were openly hostile to the concept of a “futurist” presenting to them. One of Jan’s opening slides was an illustration of a teddy bear who sat rather pensively in the corner of the frame, confessing that the more the bear learns, the more the bear realises how much there is to learn! A disarming slide, filled with humility – not a quality a large accounting firm had seen much of in the boardroom, I’d imagine!
As Jan introduced the audience expertly to her perspectives, the participants began to come around. The presentation was a wonderful balance of science and sociology, of modern thinking and ancient wisdom. Models and ideas that are – ridiculously – still not embraced by corporate Australia were introduced in such plain English and in such a compelling manner… Jan’s sense of purpose was obvious, the positive nature of her intentions was clear. She was – as ever – so grounded and so generous. She told the story of the professor with the glass vase… The vase has room for rocks, pebbles and sand… But only if we start by putting the rocks in first… Jan recommended us all to fill our “vases” first with the ‘big rocks’ of family and friends. By now the audience were in… Now leaning forward, Jan shared with us a quote of her own, something she had penned back in 1988… ““Like any living system, including you and me, an organisation depends upon successful relationships if it is to survive and prosper.”. This pearl of wisdom is perfect for Jan, as it combines those two fields she brought together, communication and futures.
Professionally, this is a very sad time for the foresight and futures community; a movement that is still young, but a movement that Jan played such an important role in sparking and amplifying in Australia.
Jan Lee Martin brought her professionalism, diplomacy and generosity to a practice that needed a credible, passionate advocate. Her passing is a great loss to our community.
Jan’s commitment to identify “inspiring ways to create the future” lives on in the lives of the many people she touched through her lifetime, not the least of which is mine.
Love creativity? This is a great example of creative advertising. Burger King in the US set up their own “Whopper” interactive TV channel where you are paid in burgers to sit and watch a whopper. The longer you watch, the more free burgers you get. (5 minutes = 1 whopper).
To see this TV channel in action, here’s a guy trying to get a free burger (offensive language warning) skip to 2min20sec to see how the channel can tell if you’re still paying attention.
The audience for this unique campaign isn’t just people who watch Direct TV channel 111, but the various audiences that will extend the campaign through social media and word of mouth. Definitely an example for anyone looking for clues about the future of advertising & marketing… If you’re going to be boring with a standard old ‘product as hero’ shot… Do it in a creative and entertaining way!
Recent disasters in Queensland – first floods and now Cyclone Yasi – have led me to ask, “Has this got anything to do with climate change?” Well… Network Ten’s Emily Rice provides a pretty good overview in this video:
It’s as good an explanation of the link between climate change and Queensland weather as I’ve seen so far… But perhaps you’ve seen better? Let me know in the comments…
I’ll leave you with a few quotes from the video that convey the story – in case the video doesn’t load:
Emily Rice: “This summer there has been one weather disaster after another… Scientists blame the rain on La Niña… While a natural weather event, this La Niña is being fueled by record ocean temperatures… To the east of [Australia], temperatures have risen well above the average, but it’s even hotter in the north, where the oceans are warming to levels never before recorded. And it’s these ‘super heated waters’ that are generating excessive rain right across Australia. Many scientists suspect climate change is already playing a part in the wild weather, exacerbating La Niña… Climate scientist Kevin Hennessy was not so shocked: he contributed to an Australian climate report that was released almost a decade ago  that made some grim flooding forecasts: that extreme rainfall events would increase across Australia by 2020, pushing flooding deaths and injuries up 240%, with all areas of Queensland at risk…. One certainty is our rough summer weather has put climate change back on the agenda.”
Interesting South 3 is fast approaching, and I’ve been thinking about the speakers and the topics that will be explored tonight. I’ve just taken a tour around Sydney (with a detour through Lebanon) using Google Street View. Below, you’ll be introduced to the speakers and topics featured tonight, along with an image captured from my joyride through Sydney…
Remo Giuffre – Anatomy of Cool – What’s cool? Who decides?
This shot was taken outside one of the coolest music venues in Sydney – the Hopetoun in Surry Hills. The sun right in the lens makes the shot even cooler. So I guess it turns out this photo is cool – and I decide!
Alan Jones & Miles Campbell – Placebos – Learn how powerful the placebo effect can be
This is shot is taken outside the RPA hospital Emergency in Camperdown. Hardly a place you’d want to be handed a placebo, but it sticks with the medical theme.
Patrick Hofmann – Away with words – Images and Icons too often fail the needs of their audience.
Even though Patrick won’t be talking about his work at Google, I thought I’d visit the Google Pyrmont office for this shot. Unfortunately this bus is in the way. An example of an image failing the needs of its audience?
Miles Merrill – Perform your own stories – why don’t writers speak or speakers write?
Berkelouw Bookshop is just down the road from the Chauvel in Paddington, where the conference is to be held… So I thought it made sense to visit there for Miles’ talk.
Basil Donovan – Oral s£x is new black
With little more than a close-up of a mouth at its entrance, “short stay hotel”, Stiletto seemed like an obvious place to go for Basil’s talk.
Adam Dennis – Rebuilding our singing society
I’ve only ever been inside the Vanguard for a moment – never for a show. It’s a cool venue… I tried going to a few karaoke bars for Adam’s talk, but they are mostly underground with little signage, so in a way, Street View doesn’t really let you visit karaoke bars. Shame, really.
Amy Frasca & Virginia Mesiti – Bondi to Beirut
I’ve already been to Bondi, so I thought I’d visit Beirut. They don’t appear to have Google Street View in Beirut, so this is the best I could do.
Steve Maxwell – On his soapbox
This is a building Steve Maxwell knows better – at least from the outside – than pretty much anyone in Sydney. When he stands on Speakers’ Corner each Sunday afternoon, this building provides part of the backdrop as he expresses his political views to anyone who’ll listen.
Cale Bain – How improv can save the world
The first time I saw Cale on stage, it was here at the Roxbury Hotel on a Tuesday night. His show, Full Body Contact No Love Tennis is great.
Tim Baynes – The permanence of temporary things – Some of the things we perceive as temporary are the most enduring
Harry’s Cafe de Wheels – a pie cart – has been one of the most enduring structures in Sydney. Evidence of Tim’s point?
Ash Donaldson – Why do we believe silly things
This is the Scient0l0gy building around the corner from my place. One time I went inside and did a personality test… Needless to say I failed miserably, have no personality, and need the services of this organisation. No thanks – not today!
So there you have it. My little tour of Interesting South 3, entirely from my laptop. It’s going to be a great night – looking forward to seeing you there!
And don’t forget, if you can’t join us, it’s ok – ABC Fora are coming to film it and stick it on TV ABC2 and the web!