Category: Lesson Eleven

Personal Branding Matters

The conversation about personal branding seems to be popping up everywhere these days. Fast Company recent dubbed it “essential to career success.” 99u says “the resume is dead, the bio is king.” Inc says “virtually everyone” needs to care about personal branding, because “how people see you matters; it is a fundamental truth of being a human.” …

Why “Not My Job” Just Might Be Your Most Important Job

The guy in the photo above is my friend Senthil (+ his super adorable son.) And this is a story about how he went above and by making my problem his problem. I’m not proud to admit that last week I lost my cool online. I’m prepping for a move, and the chaos of trying to coordinate the two-mile transfer of …

Making Good from Bad

Once in awhile you see a brand do something so smart you feel compelled to stop and cheer. Consider this blog post a cheer. Earlier this month, Land-Grant Brewing Company arrived to work to discover their building had been vandalized. Instead of getting bitter (or letting it get them down), they decided to turn a negative …

A Brand Case Study in What Not to Do

**Update: 8/4/14 — As of 3 p.m., it appears the Union Street Guest House has deleted the Facebook posts — including hundreds of comments — in an attempt to put the situation to bed. All we can say is…yikes. Another shining example of why it’s crucial to have a savvy Community Manager on staff if your …

Banning Smartphones is Not Smart Business

Recently, it seems I have seen a lot of restaurants bragging about being “smartphone-free zones,” encouraging patrons to instead talk to one another. While I wholeheartedly agree that a meal is time meant for sharing with your dining companion(s), banning smartphones in restaurants is simply bad business.  Before I continue, I should clarify. I’m not talking …

A Letter and a Lesson

A friend shared a post on reddit with me last night. By the time I reached the end of the story, it had raised a few questions. Important questions we should all be asking on a daily basis: Are you giving your employees the tools to perform a function? Or are you empowering them with the support and space to do …

Customer Happiness Is the New Customer Service

Two households, both alike in dignity. Oh wait. Wrong story. And though mine doesn’t take place in fair Verona, it is a love story about two brands. STORY 1: WARBY PARKER I recently received a new prescription from my optometrist. As has become the case over the past few years, the impetus of my visit was mostly about …

A Brand Building Lesson via HGTV

HGTV is my form of meditation. When I need a break from the world, I can always count on them to whisk me away for a couple hours of remodels, renovations and real estate purchases that leave me wondering what, exactly, a 23-year-old couple does that affords them the ability to buy a $700,000 vacation home in Belize. (I hear …

A Brand Lesson Via Chipotle: Creating a Culture of Heroes

It’s no secret I am a Chipotle fan. I live in a city where that sentiment seems to be shared by all. A place where you can find a Chipotle thoughtfully situated at both ends of the same suburb, with a line 20+ patient people deep at both. I love their purpose and soul. I …

We’re All In the Business of Making People Feel Good

A couple weeks ago I found myself in my new doctor’s office awaiting my inevitable fate (two shots…neither of the fun tequila variety). As I sat there reading posters about proper hand washing procedures and the merits of flu vaccines, something occurred to me. I’ve moved around a lot over the past decade. From dentists …

Who’s Your Gary?

FUN FACT: I am extremely loyal to my grocery store. Upon first glance, it makes no sense. Their prices are higher than other grocery stores in the area. I have to battle a notorious traffic bottleneck to get there. The parking lot is an accident waiting to happen. So why bother? Why not settle for …

Remarkable Brands Begin with Remarkable People

I recently switched banks. Boring, I know. But hang with me, I promise this story is anything but boring. A couple weeks ago I sat in on one of Mack Collier’s #rockstarchat sessions on Twitter. The discussion was centered around connecting with brand advocates. At one point in the conversation, a participant made a comment …

When someone responds

I have to brag. I feel loved. On three separate occasions, I “spoke” with four different people from Crate&Barrel. Five if you include the supervisor. I’m in wedding registry mode. It’s been interesting. But this is not a rant, I promise. It’s a reminder that people are awesome. First impression: if you call the customer …