Have a great idea that can change the world? Stuck on the details or stuck on where to begin? Impact Academy is a 5 series workshop that will provide you with the tools and support to change the world. This course is brought to you by HUB Ottawa and CISED (Centre for Innovative Social Entreprise Development). As the community and communications manager at HUB Ottawa, I help out with the course programming strategy, marketing, and of course, the branding.
There are far too many people out there who go about their day working jobs that they care very little about, then head home and start their evening idea project that can work into the wee hours of the night, not because they have to, but because they want to. The keyword here is want. I am a firm believer that everyone has the potential to work at a job that they want to. Sometimes that means breaking out of the usual corporate model and risking it all to start that idea that you’ve had burning inside you. You’ve heard it before, but here are some words that may help you get started on said idea:
- It is never too late
- It is not how good the idea is, it is how you execute it
- If you don’t take it seriously, no one else will (read: quit your day job)
- If you’re not sure where to start, just pick one thing and do it, the rest will follow
- You’re not the only crazy one, find other entrepreneurs and start a support group
- If you don’t have anyone else to hear out your idea, contact me! I love listening, the first hit is free.
- Stop procrastinating
The first round of Impact Academy will be wrapping up in a couple of days but will be running it’s course again soon. Find out more here and sign up for the mailing list to be the first to know when the next round is.
I am so lucky! Getting paid to work with a startup coffee shop? This is a dream come true. Erin Cluley is the mastermind behind this collaboration between the Coffee Pub and the Centre for Social Innovation. I tried to convince her to pay me in coffee, but alas, we worked out a sum that allowed me to purchase coffee and snacks legitimately.
Erin and I worked on her branding for 2 short months, things with the Coffee Pub moved along so quickly that we had to use a placeholder for her logo when she set up her signage.
Read more about CSI Coffee Pub on Blogto’s write up here.
- Grace and Erin at CSI Coffee Pub
This happened to me yesterday and I have to share it.
I had a meeting at The Sanctuary yesterday afternoon to jam out some potential business ventures. It was a great meeting and left excited about what is coming down the pipeline. Arriving at the TTC station, I reach into my pocket and I find that my TTC pass is not there. I called The Sanctuary and asked them to poke around the office floor – no pass. At that point I knew that I had dropped it outside The Sanctuary front doors when I took my phone out of my pocket to announce my arrival. “I think I know where I dropped it, but if it is where I think it is, it won’t be there anymore”.
If I found a TTC pass on the ground, I’d take it and use it. And surely, someone who is homeless/marginalized would certainly take it.. right?
I retraced my steps and made it back to the front doors where a small crowd of people were waiting to get into the Drop-In Dinner. I sheepishly asked them if they had seen a TTC pass. Marcel, an excitable young man, jumps up and declares, “YES! I shoveled the snow and found a pass. I gave it to the guy inside”. Â Sure enough, they guy inside had my pass. Why didn’t Marcel take it and use the pass for the rest of the month?
Because he is good. My heart broke.
Here is another story I stumbled upon today.
We all remember the days of perfecting the underwater handstand, performing our hacked together syncro swim routine and screams of joy/anger as someone splashes you in the pool. Due to severe City of Toronto funding cuts, many of the Toronto District School Board pools are on the chopping block. As a professional swimmer (I wish), I frequent the pool a few times a month so I was pretty sad to hear this news.
A collaborative project between Onmedia, Jaywall Studio, Let’s Make Waves and myself, we launched a campaign: ‘Make a Splash‘ to stop everything and get the two parties (TDSB and City of Toronto) to properly evaluate if cutting pools is necessary.
I am a firm believer in this campaign, I would not like any pools closed, but I am also not one who wants to keep something running if it makes no financial sense. Please sign the petition and join us on Facebook.
Here is some collateral we designed for the campaign.
The Socialight Conference was amazing. Period.
It was so wonderful to be in the same room as 1000+ leaders and entrepreneurs out to make the world a better place. I feel like I spoke to almost half of you, I barely have a voice left. Here is a quick list of what I took away with me.
1. Learn from someone who is doing what you want – Hailey Coleman, Damn Heels
2. Get Scrappy – Michele Romanow, Buytopia.ca
3. Leadership is about what you do when no one’s watching – Robin Sharma
4. How is your work transforming the world? – Tonya Surman, Centre for Social Innovation
5. Liking what you do is Happiness, doing what you like is Freedom – Bruce Poon Tip, G-Adventures
6. It’s not what the idea is its what you do with it – Seth Godin
7. Don’t follow lists! – Seth Godin
I ran a fun contest at the conference where delegates had the opportunity to win one of 2 branding packages. The two winners are Caroline Macfarlane of The Toronto Project and Matt Wilks of Homeboy Software. Congratulations to the two winners. If you entered the contest you have won a 30 min business and branding identity session on me! So get in touch with me!
Thanks for being an agent of change!
The winning cards
It’s 2/3 of the way through Movember and what a MOnth it has been! As you may have read in my Hair Dare post a few months back, I had met the Founder of Movember, Adam Garone, at the TEDxToronto conference. He inspired me, not only to continue with The Hair Dare, but also to participate in Movember. Since my moustache growing skill is terrible, I signed up as MoSista Team Captain of Team FauxMO (get it?) and before I knew it, I had a team of 19 and the MoSista Network of Canada reached out to me and I joined their network. Our network is now over 200 MoBros and MoSistas and we’ve raised over $30,000! My MOtivation is to bring awareness to prostate cancer and encourage men to talk – about prostate cancer, relationships, career, challenges, etc. So far, I see it happening, and that is beautiful.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I like to take things too far, therefore…
Team FauxMO is very proud to present… The MoSho! on Movember 30th at 8pm at Lee’s Palace.
Featuring the 4 bands that are part of Team FauxMO
Air Marshal Landing
In My Coma
Every donation to Team FauxMO is automatically put on the guest list, otherwise tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. See you on Movember 3oth!
(this was probably one of my MOst fun event branding projects… more branding elements at The MoSho)
so·cial·ite n. One prominent in fashionable society
so·cial·ight n. An entrepreneur or Leader Impacting Global Humanity Today; a person committed to leadership that brings light to their community and the world through socially responsible actions
I’ve been working with Theresa Laurico and Dan Jacob since early summer on a really exciting new conference called Socialight: Canada’s Ultimate Entrepreneurship and Leadership Event. On November 26, 2011, 1000+ entrepreneurs will gather to hear from inspiring speakers such as:
Tony Hsieh, Founder of Zappos
Tonya Surman, Founder of The Centre for Social Innovation (where I work!)
Robin Sharma, Founder of Sharma Leadership International Inc
Bruce Poon Tip, Founder of G-Adventures (formerly GAP Adventures)
Everyday, I meet really interesting people who are dissatisfied with the current state of ‘work’. It is not ok to suffer in a charity model, and the corporate model is very obviously failing us. I recently met up with a friend who works at MaRS Discovery District, we quickly got on the topic of ‘Social Business’. MaRS is working with groups across Canada and the globe to defining ‘Social Business’ in the Canada. This is the beginning of a beautiful marriage between entrepreneurs, social ventures and a sustainable business model! I know I’ve blogged about this a few times, and will probably continue to promote it. I am thrilled to see so many people in my network building a future where sustainable solutions to social needs are at the centre of every business model.
I am really excited about Socialight, I am ready for an inspiring day surrounded by socially conscious entrepreneurs and leaders! If you’re one of my clients, partners or just stumbled upon this post and are interested in this conference, send me a message. I would love to personally invite you to join me on November 26, and meet 1000+ entrepreneurs who are interested in making a difference in the world, while keeping a good and healthy lifestyle. Oh! Did I mention, you’ll gets 50% off ticket prices, because I love what you do.
Keep doing good, and good will come back to you!
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There is no doubt that the percentage of Canadians owning mobile phones is far higher than those not owning one. I walk down the busy streets of Toronto and some are juggling 2 (some 3?) mobile phones! With that said, I can confidently say that all the people are walking around with a camera in their pocket/purse. I will also say that I’m waiting in anticipation for the iPhone 5 reveal on October 4!
Dan Berman, an avid mobile photographer and TV producer/director, launched a competition called The Mobile Photography Awards. You can enter the photos you took with your mobile phone for a chance to win big prizes! I’ve been browsing through some of the entries and am thoroughly impressed at what a little phone can do. The contest ends November 30, 2011.
This was a fun brand to work with. One of the ‘must-haves’ was that it need to be adaptable for Phase 2 of this project: Building an App. That is why there is an app icon that is integrated right into the logo. I collaborated with Antonio Carito, genius custom CMS master, and pumped out a stellar website!
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‘Social Business’ is not (yet) defined in the dictionary world. But in my world, a ‘social business’ is a business that benefits people’s needs while turning a profit to self-sustain. In other words, it is a charity that does not rely on donations. Anika Jarrett approached me a few months ago and told me about her new business idea called Rebel Junction. Rebel Junction is gender-neutral vintage clothing and accessories shop in Moss Park that incorporates and community youth mentoring program – giving them hands on experience in starting and running a business.
Word merges are the hottest thing.
Ideation = Idea + Creating.
Gamestorm = Game + Brainstorm.
Liger = Lion + Tiger. um.
I’m going to focus this post on Freemium = Free + Premium! A freemium business model offers a product or service for free or very low cost, while upgraded products or services are at a premium. This gives potential customers the power to test run your product or service, get comfortable with it, realize that they need it… then move towards the complete offering.
Florence Grunfelder, founder of Fun Fearless and Thriving, is a certified professional life coach with a focus on career change and money. FlorenceÂ has embraced the freemium model and is offering an e-book called 4 Easy Steps to Creating the Life You Love. I love the concept (both the freemium and the title of the e-book). It was a gem working with Florence – someone who understands and promotes the integration of life with love!
Check out the workshop Florence is running on Saturday, June 18th!
Apps, start-ups, perfume, iTunes love the freemium model… and so do I!
Ask me about my freemium offerings!