PSFK 2017 Innovation With Purpose: 5 of the Most Inspiring Speakers

PSFK 2017 Innovation With Purpose: 5 of the Most Inspiring Speakers

Source: PSFK

 

So many great speakers at this year’s event – from many different industries and all parts of the world.

  • The one I missed seeing is the one I hear was most inspiring: Coss Marte, CEO and Founder of ConBody. He’s an ex-con (former drug kingpin in my neighborhood!) who totally turned his life around through fitness. But I did see him at the Sak’s Wellery last week doing a bootcamp training session. He also has a TED Talk that I am going to check out based on the rave reviews he got at PSFK.

Here, are the 5 speakers that I did see – all absolutely stellar:

Jan Chipchase, Anthropologist & Author of The Field Study Handbook

  • He calls himself a Cultural Clairvoyant but I think he’s like the Anthony Bourdain of Insights.
  • He, and a small team, travel to godforsaken parts of the world to live in tandem with the people they’re studying.
  • These untapped, edge-of-grid markets range from Afghanistan to villages in China without running water or addresses.
  • Clients include corporations, non-profits and governments.
  • Very impressively, he just did a kickstarter for his new book, The Field Study Handbook. His intention was to raise $25K. He raised $250K in 9 days. Well done, sir!!

Read on below for more.

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Highs and Lows of the Week: The Lows Have The Edge Unfortunately

Highs and Lows of the Week: The Lows Have The Edge Unfortunately

 

Was planning to do a new post series for Sundays around the “most notable thing of the week.” Of course, I envisioned it to be about something amazing. And indeed I do want to touch on last Wednesday’s sail around NY Harbor which was one of the most glorious things I have done in a long while.

  • A group of us booked the Sunset Sail on the Shearwater, a classic Newport-style schooner built in 1929.
  • We drank wine and noshed on baguettes with foie gras (brought over from Toulouse by my friend’s mom). It was a magnificent night out on the water.
  • The boat seats 43 people and you book online.  It’s $45 for the sunset sail (but they have a wide variety of options including brunch and wine and cheese tasting). HIGHLY RECOMMEND.

Now onto my major fumble of the week – perhaps that should be a series? I’ve written before about how excited I was to do an interview at the annual PSFK conference. Well it happened and I was gobsmacked by how utterly terrible I was. And I’m still not clear as to why I let it happen.

  • I had done a similar interview previously – and did a killer job of it, my client rated it a 10.
  • And it’s not like this was my first rodeo. I’ve done hundreds of keynotes and major speaking events.
  • How I messed up so badly this week is beyond me. But since this is probably something at least a few of us have experienced, I’m going to do a hindsight review of what went wrong and what I need to do in the future to make sure this doesn’t happen again.

Read on below.

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Want Your Business To Be Cool? Get A Commissioned Piece Of Street Art

Want Your Business To Be Cool? Get A Commissioned Piece Of Street Art

 

  • Got a look at the new mural by Fumero at the soon-to-be-opened Black Tap on Ludlow Street. Perfect collaboration. For those of you not familiar with Black Tap, they are famous (or infamous) for their outrageous and totally instagram-worthy $15 milkshakes (see photos here).
  • Another major mural started this week at the corner of Allen and Rivington Streets. It’s by LA-based kaNO kid Studio. His clients include Cartoon Network, Warner Brothers and Hasbro.
  • The kaNO project is sponsored by the new owners of the Allen Street Hotel in partnership with LISA (Little Italy Street Art) Project.
  • Two other recent examples include the Shepard Fairey mural at Daniel Humm’s new fast casual place, Made Nice, in NYC and the fabulous ESPO mural inside the La Colombe flagship cafe and roastery in Philadelphia’s Fishtown district.
  • And one final note on street art and its place in the world. This week a Jean-Michel Basquiat piece sold at auction for $110 Million – the highest price ever paid for an American artist. And the highest price ever for a work of art made after 1980.

See pics below of Fumero for Black Tap, the Allen Street Hotel/ kaNO kid mural, Shepard Fairey for Made Nice and the outstanding ESPO piece.

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Top summer drinking trends for 2017

Top summer drinking trends for 2017

 

Temperatures have been in the high-80’s all week in NYC so summer drinking season is just around the corner.

Here are some trends to enjoy:

Cynar Spritz

  • Edging out the Aperol Spritz this summer.
  • There’s also the Cynar Fizz (lemon, sugar and soda).

Amaro Is Booming

  • Amaro is increasingly popular, showing up on menus around the country from New York to Chicago, Milwaukee and San Francisco.
  • Bartenders in the Bay Area get a lot of the credit for popularizing amaro – from Palo Alto’s new Vina Enoteca restaurant which carries dozens of amari to San Fran’s Quince Restaurant which has an amaro cart roaming the dining room
  • Tony Hsieh of Zappos loves Fernet and has introduced it to his tech startup circle where every social occasion is a “Fernet moment.”
  • Bay Area spirits makers are also starting to distill amaro with a California twist. Link here.

 

Read on below for more summer drinking trends including the Prosecco and Rosé face off. The former doing an amazing job branding the category, the latter doing a phenomenal job in creating innovative products with outstanding packaging.

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Trend Alert: Gold Shoes and Stone-Washed Denim Are A Thing Now

Trend Alert: Gold Shoes and Stone-Washed Denim Are A Thing Now

 

Based on my rule of “see it three times” and it might just be a trend, I have to report that gold shoes (sneakers, boots, heels) and stone-washed denim (not necessarily worn together) are all the rage in NYC. Am not a big fan of either of these looks but have been spying them everywhere: The Lower East Side, La Guardia airport and even Ludlow House.

Here are some additional examples:

See Pics below.

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Hiring Trends: Remember When Job Hopping Was Bad?

Hiring Trends: Remember When Job Hopping Was Bad?

 

Two recent workplace studies. First, the results from Beyond’s nationwide study of 11,000 people (evenly split between employed and unemployed job seekers):

1. Traditional markers of success such as salary and company tenure aren’t as relevant

  • 77% believe they have achieved career success
  • Top reason: pride in their work (48%), which ranked well above money (2%) as an indicator of success (note: I find 2% hard to believe but hey, it’s not my study).
  • Tenure at one job is an anomaly. Only 8% of those who feel they’ve achieved career success have worked for just one company.

2. Today’s job seekers are impatient

  • 46% say six months to one year is how long they would “stick out” a job that doesn’t make them happy.
  • Job hopping is more useful for career advancement than working for a promotion.
  • The days of building a career from the ground up and advancing up the corporate ladder at one company are long gone.

3. The majority of Millennials aren’t too career-oriented for the time being

  • 58% say they’re happy with a “job”
  • 42% prefer a “career”

4. Mentors are important for career success

  • 87% of workers with mentors believe their careers have been successful.

 

Read on below for LinkedIn’s annual hiring study – besides seeing what industries are hot, it’s helpful to use this info to tweak your resume and linkedin profile.

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The Upstarts By Brad Stone: Compelling. HIGHLY RECOMMEND

The Upstarts By Brad Stone: Compelling. HIGHLY RECOMMEND

 

Brad Stone is a brilliant business writer. His newest book, The Upstarts, takes us behind the scenes of Silicon Valley businesses like Uber and Airbnb – how they came to be, the founders’ stories, who else is involved, what it took to get them off the ground, missteps, regulatory problems, what it means to disrupt the world as we know it (with an app).

  • It’s an absolute must-read – but feels like two distinctly different books (which may be a shortcoming)
  • The first half is about the founders and how they landed on these ideas.
  • The backstory of how these young startups are interconnected is fascinating
  • Great insights also on how a decade ago, wealthy VCs in their late 30 or 40’s, were unable to see the appeal or potential of the “sharing economy” and missed out on the first rounds of funding.
  • This first section of the book is incredibly inspiring and a fast read. In flipping through to check my notes, I was struck again by how powerful and riveting and entertaining this story is!
  • The second half is a bit more of a slog.
  • It covers the companies’ massive growth (doubling their users every few months) and drills down on the turmoil of dealing with regulators and competitors.
  • Plus the many self-inflicted legal/safety issues that for airbnb, in the particular, resulted from their Pollyannaish outlook. Reading how unprepared they were in anticipating all the many things that could go wrong when you let strangers into your home is mind-boggling.
  • The book, completed at the end of 2016, barely touches on all the issues that are currently challenging Uber and putting Kalanick ‘s leadership in question (company culture, sexual harassment lawsuits, lack of diversity, Trump meetings).

 

Key takeaways:

  • Travis Kalanick – For many, he has become persona non grata. Not for me. I think he’s a genius and one of my business idols. In 8 short years, he fundamentally changed how we approach transportation.
  • He’s a force of nature. Exactly the kind of scrappy, entrepreneurial, hardnosed leader every startup needs if it intends to succeed. Cut from the same cloth as many of the other founders I admire including Steven Jobs and Jeff Bezos.
  • Not that I am in his league, but having started several businesses myself I know what it takes to make it. It’s not about work-life balance, it’s about how driven you are – and how aggressively and single-mindedly you pursue your vision.
  • This is probably oversharing but I found him so relatable that I had to google his birthday: LEO!!

Read on below for 5 more takeaways on what it takes to create a successful start up:

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Traditional Retail In A Heap Of Trouble But Opportunities Are Emerging

Traditional Retail In A Heap Of Trouble But Opportunities Are Emerging

This past week I attempted to shop in stores in preparation for my upcoming trip. The in-store experience was grim – it sent me back to Amazon in a hurry.

Here are two examples of how miserable shopping has become:

  • At Bloomingdale’s Soho: Tried to buy a small, lightweight umbrella. Nobody knew if they carried umbrellas. One sales person sent me to the cafeteria. I checked out the men’s dept., found a few umbrellas but they were all too big. Frustrated and sad I left the store empty-handed.
  • At COS on Spring Street: Still a favorite store (and very busy). I found 5 outfits and then happened upon a favorite pair of pants (I bought 3 pairs last year). They did not have my size in store. I asked if they could check if they had them online. NO they could not. I asked if they could call the 5th Avenue store to see if they had them – my goal was to buy 5 pairs. NO they could not. After I got home with my purchases, I went online to order. Could not find them. Called customer support. They could not locate by product number. Ugh!! How can you have an item in multiple sizes in store but have no record of it online? That would have been a $500 order. How many other orders are going unfulfilled because of shoddy logistics?

But enough griping. There are some positives developing for retail . Not sure if it’s enough to overcome the dismal daily news of closings and bankruptcies but we will take all the good news we can get.

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