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scribblings about earning trust & influence on the social web


  • Sep 25 / 2014
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How Steve Jobs responded back to Michael Dell

Steve Jobs vs. Michael Dell
Another video has recently emerged that should make your weekend.

Back in 1997, Michael Dell of Dell Computers was asked what he would if he was given a chance to run Apple. His (albiet, bit arrogant) response was that he’d shut it down and give the money back to shareholders.

Now let’s see how Job responds to this statement.

Jobs says he thought that was “rude.” And then, he says, “We’re coming after you buddy.” And they did. (Rumour has it, Michael has been seen walking around with a Macbook Air in a private meeting).

  • Aug 19 / 2014
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Live your life before it becomes lifeless

  • Aug 18 / 2014
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Books, Strategy

Have we learned how to think?

How We Think? John Dewey - Free eBook

How we think?

One of the most critical elements of success (and quite honestly inner peace) in anyone’s life is ability to think — decipher the signal from the noise.

Long before others, John Dewey penned the definitive treatise on the subject — a subject all the more relevant today, in our age of snap judgments and instant opinions. All thanks to abundance in digital and social media.

In his masterwork How We Think, Dewey examines what separates thinking, a basic human faculty we take for granted, from thinking well, what it takes to train ourselves into mastering the art of thinking, and how we can channel our natural curiosity in a productive way when confronted with an overflow of information.

How We Think : Download it for your Kindle/epub here. It’s free.


  • Aug 11 / 2014
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Bell Canada

Let’s talk about mental health

Mental Illness Stat.

“Cause you’re only given a little spark of madness, and if you lose that, you’re nothing.” – Robin Williams

In my previous life at Bell Canada, I came pretty involved with Bell’s Let’s Talk campaign which was focused upon removing the negative stigma associated with mental illness. As I learned more about the disease, I became more sensitive to the issue and the realization that it impacts the vast majority of us. Yet, no one ever talks about it.

At this very moment, some 3 million Canadians are suffering from depression.

Two-thirds of homeless people using urban shelters suffer from some form of mental illness.
Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health

Every day, 500,000 Canadians miss work due to a form of mental illness.
Mental Health Commission of Canada

Suicide accounts for 24% of all deaths among 15-24 year-olds and 16% among 25-44 year-olds.

With the news of Robin Williams passing, it just reminded me again that we should never stop talking about this disease, because it is one and there’s nothing wrong with talking about it. The more we talk, the more we interact with each other on this topic, the more chances we have to help 1 in 5 of us who will face some form of depression in our lives. It’s the silent majority that is hurting the most.

So do me a favor. Ask your fellow colleague, friend, family member how they are doing tonight? If you have suffered from some form of depression, please do share your story in the comments. We would love to listen and care.


And here’s Umair Haque’s contribution in such a simple manner.

  • Jul 17 / 2014
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Management, social media, Strategy, Technology News, web 2.0

The 20 second rule

20-secondsIn last week’s CXO-Talk, we had Robert Scoble aka, Scobilizer discuss the upcoming future landscape of tech. From wearable computing,, smarter context to smart beacons to startups. What really stuck out for me was the 20 second rule he uses to assess a company’s ability to disrupt and be successful at market transformation.

Getting noticed is an art. If you want people to support you in your game changing approach, product and/or service it needs to be understood in 20 seconds or less. If it takes 15 mins to explain the concept, then one will have a harder time getting the traction needed with the masses to make it a success. This goes for both consumer and business markets.

Robert shared his story of when Google (in the 90’s competing with over 17 search engines) explained their ‘art’ in 20 seconds by asking him to just do a simple search. Within few seconds, he realized the value as the results were filtered, clean and didn’t have the clutter typically seen from others like Altavista. This led to an hour long conversation about Google’s PageRank algorithm and differentiation.

“You have to have something so much better than all other players, and I have to be able to get it in 20 seconds. Because people are so resistant to change, if you can demonstrate your value in 20 seconds you have a shot,” said Scoble.

I’ve used a similar technique to assess vendor pitches, agency pitches and my own speaking engagements. If you truly understand your topic, you can always simplify it for the masses.  Heck, this trick worked wonderfully over a decade ago to win me my first date with my then girlfriend, (now wife and mother of my 2 kids).