Harper’s needs to step up and show leadership

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Social Politics: The way for a true leader

Social Politics in Canada

The year 2012 has been the start of a new way of doing politics in Canada; social politics. So what is social politics? It’s a new way of doing politics that involves incorporating the people’s voiced needs. It all started with the student protests for the tuition hikes in Montreal.  After months of gruelling protests, a lot of annoyed workers and Charest becoming more frustrated with the students lack desire for negotiations, he finally decided to call for an election. Obviously, the Liberals lost and gave way to the Parti Quebecois (Pauline Marois). Marois didn’t win because her policies were more popular but because Charest showed a lack of leadership by not listening and position himself as a leader of the people. Although she is an opportunist, Marois strategically positioned herself to win the elections.

Just a few months later, we find ourselves in the same situation; Harper, again, refusing to listen to the protests. History seems to be repeating itself; Harper’s lack of understanding towards the first nations’ demands shows lack of leadership. Although the next federal election is only scheduled for October 2015, Harper needs to make some serious changes in his leadership strategy or he will finish his term so unpopular that it will discredit the conservative party. The opposition is already moving in where Harper is failing. Justin Trudeau, a candidate for the liberal party, has visited chief Theresa Spence and has organized a twitter bomb to help boost popularity of her cause. No one is saying that Justin’s intentions are sincere or not, but it is definitely a strategic place to be at, especially being so close from the liberal leader’s elections.

It’s been a long time since Canada has actually seen the likes of a true leader but with this kept in mind, it will pave the way for a younger and more modern generation of leaders. Politics will need to be conducted in a much more “social” way than it has been and should make way for newer strategies in parliament. True Canadian leaders are going to realize this shift by regularly monitoring the most unpopular decisions online and participate in online discussions about these. This is a much sounder strategy instead of waiting until a protest gets organized. Those who acknowledge the people’s voice are those who will be accepted as true leaders.

Integrating the Creative Business Card Concept

Socializing is such an important part of starting a new business and building your customer base. Weather it be mingling within your community to build prospects, creating core partnerships and key contacts to get business rolling, business cards are one of the most important parts because it usually is your first contact with the potential prospect. To convert that person into a prospect you need a good business card that describes you efficiently and effectively.

There is no rule book on what you must do when it comes to creating effective business cards. In my opinion, these are important components that your card should incorporate. Some things may work for some people and for others it wont work at all. You be the judge on what works best for you but hopefully this blog post will help inspire you on where to start.

Before getting into business cards, I think it’s important to explain a major core component about your organization; the “why”.

The “why” is by far the most profound part of a company and the essence of creating truly great companies. It is at the root of what inspires people to come back for what you do. Companies who inspire people are those who are able to distinguish why they do what they do.  For instance, if you say that this toothpaste has the best cavity fighting and tooth whitening ingredients, this sounds like an O.K. toothpaste. But if you explain that we think it is important for someone to wake up in the morning and look in the mirror and feel their best about their smile to be able to meet people and feel confident about yourself in your everyday life. Now this is inspiring and is at the heart of creating a truly great company.

 

Effectively communicating your “why” is the next step. Business cards are a great way of doing this because quite often they are the first step in recruiting prospects. Having a truly inspiring message that is core to your why on your business cards can really help converting that prospect into a customer. But it doesn’t have to be written verbally; it can also be done through your logo or even in the design or concept. However it should be brief and to the point cause you have about half a second before the prospect decides to put that card in his or her wallet or throwing it out.

 

But that’s not all there is to it. Design and creativity should really be incorporated to give your business that edge that you belief you have. There’s nothing more boring than a template.  Use design to maximize the chances a person will pick up your card. Most people don’t have much knowledge of design but you can always hire a graphic designer to help you create the effect you want. Your investment won’t be in vein.  Get someone who has a great portfolio that you think your business can identify with and whose style you think should represent your business. Are you more innovative? More creative? Do you offer a more personalized service? Do you make better quality? Are you more of a trendy or tradition business? Does your product taste better? This can determine the look and feel of your business cards and are qualities that you graphic designer should be embody.

 

Design is great but can easily overkill and distract from the business. Pictures are so inappropriate cause they make the reader more interested in the shot than what is on the card… even for photographers. A portfolio is no place for a business card, leave that for your website. Instead, design a cool logo that depicts you passion for what you do, expresses your style and your “why”.

 

Color is always interesting but it can easily overkill and confuse a prospect. Use simple color schemes and focus of only the important parts of the card such as your name. Embossing or glosses will hike up the overall price of the cards but really add prestige when well done.

 

Here are a few examples of businesses that have embedded their why really well:

Asthma Clinic Business Cards

This is an Asthma Clinic who integrated the why really well through their business cards: “Because we know that doing simple things can be so difficult when you have asthma.”

Mechanical Engineer Business Cards

Another creative use of “the why” through business cards: “Because we love to design complex devices in compact packages”

 

Advertising Agency Business Card

This is an advertising agency that has incorporated their why in their slogan: “Because we understand that thinking outside the box is important to you”

Security Consulting Business Cards

This is a security consulting firm that has incorporated their why with a striking concept appealing to the emotional fear of being robbed. It features the tools used to pick a locks and attempts to make the reader realize how easy it is to break in to your home: “Because we understand that it is important to feel secure within your home”

 

 

Graphic Designer Business Cards

Graphic designers usually try to dazzles their clients with their graphic skills but they forget that their prospects have real needs this card appeals to this need: “Because your business’ survival is important to you”

 

I hope this helps!

 

 

If your interested in the why here is where it comes from:

Sinek, S. (2012). Start with the why. Retrieved from http://www.startwithwhy.com/

 

Montreal Taxi Drivers Hit the Streets of Montreal

A taxi driver, Guercy Edmund, appeared in court on Monday and was convicted of a hit and run on a gang of attackers. The Youtube video clip clearly appeared to be in self-defence and yet they he is being convicted of several charges including aggravated assault, assault with a weapon, hit and run, and dangerous driving. When the attackers themselves got off with a slight slap on the hand, taxi drivers hit the streets of St-Antoine today to protest the taxi drivers conviction in support of their colleague.

This show some of the hazards that comes with being a taxi driver and the court should realize this and correct this injustice.

Source:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2012/05/02/montreal-taxi-driver-bail-hearing-hit-and-run.html

Keeping people calm since 1939


keep-calm-and-carry-on

Original ad from the 1939 war in England

It was 1939, London fog replaced by tension that now fills the air of London streets, England is at war. Gas masks have suddenly become part of everyday home furnishings and worry is a part of the daily routine. To offset the feelings of anxiety amongst its people, the crown sets off an ad campaign to boost moral with 4 simple reassuring words: “Keep Calm Carry On”.

Who would of ever though that 70 years later that this same ad that once reassured a population at war is now reassuring a new generation in our everyday lives. The ad pops up everywhere; Facebook, Twitter, blogs its all over the internet. The poster started out as a moral booster but somehow ended up becoming motto to live our lives by.  New versions of the ad have appeared with “Keep Calm Love Unicorns” but really all comes down to enjoying the simple things in life no matter how bad things get. Keep it simple.

keep-calm-and-put-the-kettle-on

Old Ad from the England war in 1939

Let women be…

A plus size magazine dares to embrace the true, raw, unretouched curves of the woman? I envy the plus sized magazine community for being so bold in defying the status quo and how they have embraced natures way of things cause thats how we’re made. Nature doesn’t have photoshop and anorexia is not a healthy way of looking nor is it a message to be sending to young women. So why are we praising them?

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The magazine cover featured nudes of plus sized women. The message is clear… love yourself! Why does this attitude have to be only within the plus sized community? Honestly, i think all magazines should have “normal” looking people looking fantastic in their clothes. I dream of a world that woman can flip through a magazine, walk through the street or watch their favourite TV show and not feel like they are not skinny enough.

But can advertising change for the better?

You can check out the magazine PLUS magazine article here

The V magazine pictures are here

Levi’s “slim” attempt at CSR

Women have been bombarded since the beginning of advertising with images of unrealistically skinny women. I can’t even walk in my hometown of Montreal for more that 60 seconds without being flashed a tall lanky stereotype of what I should look like. What kind of message does that send a 5’2″ woman? So when i finally saw the Dove campaign for real beauty I said to myself finally a company who understands us. Dove made a lot of money on this campaign and other companies wanted to follow in their footsteps. Corporate social responsibility became the new “IN” word for corporation thinking that they can increase profit margins if they show that they are a brand that cares. Unfortunately, there are too many companies are just cashing in on the idea but don’t truly believe that this it is a better way to do business.

Levis Attempts Corporate Social Responsibility
Levis Attempts Corporate Social Responsibility

Take Levis for instance with it new “Hotness comes in all shapes and sizes”. The message on its own is something that sounds like a good idea but a glimpse at the picture and the women all have the same type of  “stereotype” physique that you would normally see in a magazine cover. It’s really frustrating to see companies so afraid to take a chance and put a more average figure wearing their brand.

ABC for example refused to air a plus sized lingerie model saying that it was too “revealing” meanwhile Victoria Secrets airs during primetime. Why are they so afraid of showing a “real woman”. Are they afraid that we are going to relate to the women being shown?

You can check out the news report here.

Advertising needs to change its attitude and think as a society and not as individual companies after all society IS the market.