Monday, September 23, 2013

Relationship ROI–Nikki Pett

NikkiPettI have read almost 150 books on networking, passed 10,000 of public speaking time, volunteered for thousands of hours for charities washing floors, cooking food and being on boards, I’ve raised millions of dollars to help, change and save the world and I’ve coached a few hundred people to personal success.

I’m often asked why I don’t write a book.

This book is the answer why I don’t need to.

When I first read this book, it was so in tune to my beliefs on networking, business, fundraising, community development that I got through it in less than a couple hours and scared a couple people in a coffee shop shouting “that’s it!!” a few times. I’ve been waiting for a book like this for years.

ROI – Wow I hate this tiny little sharp, overused, passive-aggressive phrase.

But it’s what everyone knows is behind our goals and ideas. Nikki has put together a book that addresses the networking and business solution for my personal trifecta of social good:

1. Associations: Boards of Trade, professional associations, community based member groups. They are the backbone of our for-profit and social-profit world but in 2013, honestly, most of them are struggling to get members and stay relevant. Nikki has dedicated one third of the book to them, and her solutions are practical but current. I gave copies of this book to my favourite associations with the note “this will save you”.

NikkiPettHands2. Charities: Nikki is a proud member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is an exhibitor/sponsor of several chapters. She has worked with them through her business sigma promotions and I must say has a keen understanding of the philanthropic ecosystem. I’m asked so often about how charities can leverage networks, personal and institutional for revenue – one third of this book is for you.

3. Entrepreneurs: I personally feel that business and charities are a bad match. Corporations have influenced good grassroots organizations to become as sluggish, ineffective, bureaucratic and meeting-over-moving-focused. Charities and entrepreneurs were made for each other!! This third of the book, about the pure steps to making profit using today’s social-media technology and networking techniques is a powerful read for all three readers.

This book is not going to be a New York Times best seller. Nikki’s business is not publically traded, she doesn’t have a limo or private jet. But y’know, so many of those authors are more focused on selling the book then on your success, so many of those big businesses are dead weight in our economy and Nikki is a successful business owner who has thrived while giving back. She and my network agree on the definition of success, that triple bottom line between profit, community and the earth.

targetroiI couldn’t recommend reading a book, or meeting a person more.

As the end of 2013 approaches, will you hit your goals?

Nikki can help.

Thanks for spending your time with me today!

             Paul Nazarethblog

Sunday, September 15, 2013

What is a business artist? Steve Jobs and more…

On vacation this summer ( see ‘my break from business books’ ) I wanted to read something different, but that still taught me something of value in my career – note I didn’t say work – something that would help me evolve into who I want to be.SteDesign

So many of my mentors, my personal board, encourage me to read biographies. But with the exception of two great biographies, Nelson Mandela and Frank Sinatra – no business leader bio’s ever felt like “must reads”.

Until the recent death of Steve Jobs. Here was a guy who had changed the world, certainly my world. Someone fascinating who I didn’t really know that much about except that he loved “walking meetings”. 

And I’ve been obsessed ( mostly thanks to Seth Godin ) about what does a business professional look and feel like, expressed as an “artist”?

The book does not disappoint. It’s almost 600 pages but it moves quickly through every aspect of his life, challenges, strengths, gifts and weaknesses. I learned so much about things I care about – business, life, loss and what it takes to make great things, and make things great.

agowoodIt was at the same time that I visited a place I usually go to think. The Art Gallery of Ontario. There’s a room, that I have walked by a number of times that struck me on this visit. A fascinating immersive room dedicated to world renowned artist David Milne. In it I got to delve into the mind, the life of an artist in hundreds of different ways. It was a powerful perspective-shifting experience that helped me understand how I could adapt this thinking to the life I’m trying to build. My deepest thanks to those who donated to and created this amazing space. wisdom

My last read on this vacation from traditional business books was a treat, something I’ve been dying to read for a while now. Andrew Zuckerman’s “Wisdom” advice from artists, musicians, scientists, thinkers from around the world. I sat in this place, and just devoured the thing I seek most in this world –—the life-learned wisdom of people who have made the world a better place.

A vacation from books, with books.       

SteveJobsBioSo pick up Steve’s bio before Ashton Kutcher and Hollywood messes up his memory. Learn what was behind every one of these funny and thoughtful moments and this now legendary Standford speech….

In the mean time, visit the AGO and I leave you with…some