Jonathan Fields Says You Are Exactly As Lucky As You Believe You Are

Jonathan Fields is a speaker, entrepreneur, and author of the book, Uncertainty: Turning Fear and Doubt Into Fuel for Brilliance. Jonathan joined Never Eat Alone co-author Tahl Raz on the Social Capitalist to talk about his work around the idea of certainty anchors as a tool to support innovation. Here, Jonathan talks about luck, and how it is frequently in the eye of the beholder:

Richard Weismann was doing experiments. He wanted to try and figure out whether there is some commonality among the lucky. Is there something that some people do that makes them luckier or less lucky than others?

So what he did is he got two groups of people together. One group self-identified as being very unlucky. The other group self-identified as being very lucky. He sat them all down and he said, “Okay, here’s a newspaper. I’m going to time you. I want you to go through the newspaper as quickly as possible and count every picture that you see in the newspaper.” The people who identified themselves as being unlucky took about two minutes on average, and they returned and said, “Okay, there are 43 pictures in the newspaper.”

The people, on average, who identified themselves as lucky took a few seconds and came back with the exact same number. Continue reading

Relationship Roundup

This week in the roundup: some suggestions for getting relationships off to a great start, managing relationship priorities, and picking the right atmosphere to develop them.

When to sever a relationship – One of my favorite statements about relationships is, “a reason, a season and a lifetime”. As our lives change so do our needs for our relationships, including those that serve as mentors. In this Harvard Business Review article, some relevant tips for establishing goals that monitor when a relationship is past its prime. Read the tips here

Social contracts – Negotiating the terms of relationships at work are a smart way of ensuring that cultural values are adhered to in the workplace. In this HBR Blog, authors Christine M. Riordan and Kevin O’Brien from the University of Denver share some great resources to implement expectations within your organization. Read the blog here

Extraordinary sightings – If you seek an extraordinary boss, or aspire to be one, this Inc. magazine article explores the eight traits that successful CEO’s have implemented to build great teams. Read the article here

Investing in People – I can’t get enough of Big Think and SmartBrief’s partnership to bring great ideas from industry leaders front and center. In their latest episode of the VIP Corner, Jim Quigley, the senior partner and former CEO of Deloitte shares his thoughts on why companies need to invest in their people. Read and view it here

Relationship atmosphere – If you’ve ever taken Keith Ferrazzi’s advice on initiating a long slow dinner and using meal time to advance relationship intimacy, you know that atmosphere is a key attribute to consider when making a restaurant selection. New website Hoppit aims to help diners filter choices by environment style. Read the Springwise article here

Kibibi Springs is myGreenlight’s Community Director.

Contact Management Report: Connected

A report from the wild, wonderful world of contact management. Right now I’m working with Connected (, acquired a while back by LinkedIn) and though it’s not as feature rich or “smart” as another contact manager that I have high hopes for, Graphight, it’s super easy to use and does have bonus features that work well to deploy myGreenlight contact management recs. I like it. I like it a lot.


  • Evernote integration, hurrah! Awesomely easy way to take down notes at, say, a cocktail party, and get those notes matched to contacts in your address book.
  • There’s a tool to identify super connectors using the “who introduced me” feature in each contact entry – this is important, since identifying and hanging out with super connectors is an important way to keep opportunity and information flowing through your network.
  • Pinging tool: For each contact, you can be reminded to reach out at whatever frequency you request. Now, here’s my feature request: Reminders to ping a tagged group (rather than an individual) with a certain frequency. Not that you’d ping them all at once or with the same message, but so that you’d be prompted to visit the tagged list and consider with whom it’s a good moment for a generous outreach.
  • On Connected’s blog, they offer a worksheet to help you define your “Relationship Management Objective” – this is no replacement for myGreenlight’s Relationship Action Plan, but it is a cool, quick tool to think through your “relationship objectives”: which audiences you’re looking to communicate with, why, what message you want to send, and how you want to send it. Continue reading

The Road to Good Relationships Is Paved with Communication

From a young age, we are taught that we can’t always share what’s on our mind. “Don’t tell her that. Say that she looks fine. If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Developing the tact to avoid the awkward usually helps avoid petty fights, and saves feelings.

As we get older, the necessity of this filter seems to become more and more ingrained. We find ourselves confronted with the question again and again. “Should I tell the truth?” By no means is there one correct answer to this question that applies to all occasions, but there are times when sharing your deepest thoughts, fears, and dreams can definitely be the right answer.

An HBR article from last week explores this idea, For People to Trust You, Reveal Your Intentions. The author challenges the reader to find our greatest fears, and in turn our greatest obstacles. “Intentions are how we distinguish a villain from someone whose influence we accept, whom we move toward,” he writes. “Competence may be appealing, but intentions are what attract or repel us and foster trust or mistrust.” Continue reading

Christine Comaford Explains How What You Wear Can be an Act of Generosity

Christine Comaford is the author of Rules for Renegades, which might make you think that her advice would center around self-expression and breaking the rules. While breaking the rules is certainly one of her favorite themes, during her Social Capitalist Interview she shared some interesting perspective on why being a chameleon and adapting to what others want to see can be an act of generosity and service.

Christine says:

“It’s service-oriented. It really is. So just like in rapport, we step out of ourself then we say, ‘What does that person need to see?’ So Monday for instance, I’ll be in New York City. I’ll be in a room of 40 CEOs of mid-market companies. Forget me, OK? I’m not relevant. What’s relevant is what can come through me. What do those guys need to see? What they need to see, based on talking to the folks who are sponsoring the event and just listening, is someone who’s conservative, someone’s who’s got some really good answers to what is happening in the world right now and how they should manage change. Someone who’s going to help them walk away with like five tips so they can manage the radical amount of change in their organization today. So yes, I don’t like wearing conservative suits, but I will wear one. That will make them feel safe. Rapport tools help us step out of ourselves. Continue reading

Relationship Roundup

This week in the Roundup, the focus is on behavioral traits that create the type of productive, deep, and meaningful relationships you want in your life. Take it all in, then take the steps to practice those behavioral traits that will get you where you envision yourself.

Perspectives on acts of kindness – Taking in a variety of perspectives makes learning richer. Learning to take in a variety of perspectives is a habit worth practicing. Even if you disagree with an opposing opinion, the opportunity to listen to, discuss, or read someone else’s point of view on a topics allows you to better understand the complexity of humans. Read this author’s experience with taking in others’ perspectives on kindness here

MISS perceptions – Without a willingness to practice empathy and an awareness that perception is dictating our reality, we misperceive the actions of others all the time. You know what they say about assumptions. This Linked 2 Leadership blog sheds a deeper light on the natural tendency to judge and how to develop behaviors that create more teamwork in the tribe. Read it here

Influence with integrity – Integrity can be difficult to maintain when met with opposition and maintaining it can require making some decisions not in your immediate favor. However, from the outside looking in, a lack of integrity can speak volumes about your leadership ability.This SmartBrief blogger shares their view on how leadership can die on the vine when behaviors that lack integrity are displayed and how to keep your integrity in tact in tough situations. Read it here

Transferring culture – There is a lot that can be learned from brands with strong cultures that have a lot to share about replicating their brand experience in ways that resonate with employees and consumers. Big Think’s latest episode on leadership featuring Whole Foods CEO John Mackey provides some lessons on culture transference. Read and watch it here

Kibibi Springs is myGreenlight’s Community Director.

We Have a Winner!

We are pleased to announce the winner of our second scholarship contest. John Shelton has received a free one-year unlimited membership to myGreenlight. The prize (worth $699) includes unlimited access to all of myGreenlight’s resources.

John’s membership package includes all three of myGreenlight’s courses, three bonus courses, access to myGreenlight’s thought leadership series’ archived and live events, and access to the program’s alumni directory.

John’s entry submission was selected by myGreenlight’s Community Director, Kibibi Springs and Program Director Sara Grace because of his well-defined goal for the program. As a nonprofit manager for the Brewery Arts Center in Northern Nevada and a consultant for more than 30 years, John intends to use the program to help maintain his local non-profits’ donor base. He will apply the training towards strengthening critical relationships to the organization’s continued existence in the community it serves. Fully understanding the recent economic landscape and the shift in priorities for many towards self-preservation over altruism, he sees relationship building as an essential component for driving and managing the non-profits patrons and members.

“As the leader of this institution, I have to look beyond simply providing cultural services to the community and must work to find improved ways to connect personally with our citizens, creating partnerships that approach community problems collectively, and that build up all of us towards living and working in our community together,” says John.

MyGreenlight is happy to award this resource to John to use with his staff and board to serve a catalytic role in rejuvenating the community through cultural awareness and deeper relationships. We look forward to hearing John’s progress locally and how their successes can provide a model for the national nonprofit community.

Cool New Apps to Fuel Your Job Hunt

One of the places where past investments in social capital pay back major dividends is when you are in the market for a new job. Having an inside connection at any company can up your chances of finding out about new opportunities early, and making sure your credentials get in front of the right people. Luckily, there are an array of tools emerging to make the entire process more efficient, and yes, even enjoyable.

You are probably already familiar with the ways that LinkedIn can help uncover connections you didn’t even realize existed. Whether you find job postings right on the LinkedIn site or elsewhere, a quick search to see if you have someone on the inside at your dream company should be part of your application process.

To take your LinkedIn profile to the next level, check out Re.Vu - a cool way to create a visually appealing storyboard of your past experience. To see what I mean, check out my Re.Vu page. Their site pulls your history from the LinkedIn site and gives you lots of options to add more information to flesh out and portray your past in an engaging way. My favorite part? The time graph of employment history – my past has never seemed so exciting. Sharing your Re.Vu site is more efficient than carrying around paper resumes and easy for friends to pass along on your behalf. Continue reading

Is My Business School Equation Balanced?

About six months ago, I wrote about pursuing my MBA. At that point, I was still undecided. Now, I’m back with an update.

Initially, I wasn’t sure if going back to school was worth it. So I started thinking about it in terms of cost. As an economics major, I decided that maybe I could write an equation to make sense of everything. Sometimes simplifying complicated thoughts can help. So here’s my theory.

I should go back to school if Benefits > Costs.

I had already listed the plausible advantages of going to business school in my last post:

  1. To get a stronger foundation in my knowledge of business.
  2. Professional/career development – both in the theoretical and practical sense.
  3. My personality type – I’m a more risk-averse person, so I would be less interested in blazing a new trail than working my way along a traveled, yet still challenging road.
  4. Having specialized knowledge in an area of interest to me (a Master’s degree)
  5. A new engaging and challenging experience.

Now I listed costs: Continue reading

Relationship Roundup

This week in the Roundup we’re addressing habits, email timing, gender balance in the workplace, our desire to “pin”, and gifting that can increase intimacy. Enjoy the variety!

Habitual behaviors – All habits aren’t good for us personally or for the organizations we work in. In this very promising new video blog series between SmartBrief and BigThink, author Charles Duhigg shares his studies on habitual behaviors and how a closer look at them can reveal some opportunities for change within organizations and ourselves. Read the blog and view the video here

Email timing – We’ve tackled the question of email timing at myGreenlight in the past through general crowdshare. In this CBS Money Watch article, author Laura Vanderkam shares what her studious observations on open rates have revealed about the best day and time to send email. Read the article here

Gender diversity in leadership – Consultant Dana Theus presents the business case for gender balanced leadership in this SmartBrief blog. Read the article here

How pinteresting – Recently Pinterest was named the #3 most popular social network. I haven’t started pinning yet so I can’t attest to the rage. However, I can foresee many ways it might help me connect in more deep and meaningful ways with those in my network and those I wish to be in my network. Find out why “pinning” is the new “like” here

Gifts that give great impressions – At certain points in a growing relationship, we are all faced with the “gift conundrum”. Everyone knows that what you choose to give shows another how thoughtful you are and how much you really are paying attention to their interests. Smart gifting can be challenging so I was pleased to see these two services that provide some assistance so you can make a big and positive impression. Read about them here

Kibibi Springs is myGreenlight’s Community Director.