Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I just spent most of the morning getting the word out about upcoming Denver IDEA Cafe speakers, emailing a release to the media, posting it on the Small Business Chamber of Commerce blog http://www.sbccblog.com/, updating the meetup.com site http://meetup.com/Denver-IDEA-Cafe, updating the SBCC Facebook page http://Facebook.com/Small.Business.Chamber, and announcing this week's meeting on the Denver IDEA Cafe Facebook group, you'll find a link to it on the SBCC Facebook Page.

For over 10 years I've been holding these free, open to everyone startup workshops for two reasons: 1) I enjoy the meetings myself, they are the highlight of my week, and 2) people who attend tell me they find the meetings very helpful.

It's not meant to be a regular stop for anyone, just a one time boost when starting in a new direction with a new career, a new project or campaign, or a new business. Please join us any Friday afternoon when you aren't quite sure what you'll be doing Monday morning. And please share it with your friends when they have a bump like loosing a job or when they have a bight idea and aren't quite sure what to do next.

It's certainly not a secret. Thanks to the Denver Post, the Denver Daily News, the Villager Newspaper, Westword, the Denver Business Journal for helping us get the word out about it.

It's now part of your new, free Small Business Chamber of Commerce, so this will be the last you see me write about it here. Maybe. :)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Thanks to the Villager Newspaper for getting the word out about your new, free Small Business Chamber of Commerce to their readers in Cherry Hills and Greenwood Village. To see the article online, click here: http://villagerpublishing.com/2010/news/john-wren-starts-new-small-business-chamber-of-commerce/?awesm=fbshare.me_AVdmp

Mike Littwin's very informative and entertaining article about the tea party phenomina was the front page story today in the Denver Post. In case you missed it, read it here:  http://www.denverpost.com/littwin/ci_16412033

There has been a big increase in the level of interest in local politics, should mean a real strengthening of the grassroots with new leaders at the precinct, district and county level with both major political parties. Helping make sure that happens will be one of the major goals of your new, free Small Business Chamber of Commerce. I'm going to stop writing about it here, you can follow developments with it on http://www.sbccblog.com/.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Last week was hectic because of some personal business, hope to get more accomplished this week.

Never got notes from DU Symposium posted here, but here's a summary of the weekend put up by the alumni department, including a couple of pictures of me taking the notes if you go to the 6th page or so of the photos. The videos of the chancellor and the Friday evening speaker (see my notes about him below) are very much worth watching. Click Here

Your new, free Small Business Chamber of Commerce is making some progress. There were announcements about it in the Denver Post and the Denver Daily News. If you haven't "liked" our new Facebook Page, please do so now at http://Facebook.com/Small.Business.Chamber and while you are there join our Facebook group where I'll be doing several posts a week about upcoming events and news that I think you'll find interesting.

The Jesuit Guide Discussion Group is in it's 4th and final week, you have one last chance to join us this Friday, 4 p.m., at Panera Bread, 13th & Grant St. For more info and optional RSVP see http://meetup.com/CommunityRoomCollege

I'm the speaker this week at your new, free Small Business Chamber of Commerce's Denver IDEA Cafe startup workshop. I'll be sharing my own career, project, campaign and new business startup experience, and I want to brainstorm a couple of topics related to your new SBCC and our monthly "Big Event" that will be starting in November.For more and optional RSVP see http://meetup.com/Denver-IDEA-Cafe.

Hope you have a great week, and please let me know if you'd like a speaker for your service club, church group, neighborhood organization, or other gathering. My favorite talk is "Learn to Win with Ben Franklin's Best Invention, the Mastermind Group."

"Education is the best investment." Ben Franklin

Friday, October 01, 2010

Andrew Rosenthal, editorial page editor of the New York Time spoke tonight at the University of Denver Alumni Symposium.

Rosental graduated from DU in 1978, "I didn't go to an Ivy league school, but a lot of the people I've hired did."  He wrote for the Clarion, the DU school paper, "which was not so much of a newspaper as a club." He soon was hired by the Rocky Mountain News as a part-time police reporter, after graduation by the Associated Press, then the New York Times. http://www.nyt.com/

He gave a very interesting talk, followed by an frank, open, and long question and answer session. Here is a recap of some of his thoughts:

The print edition of the New York Times is not about to stop. The prime measure of print subscribers, 2+ year subscribers is up, But we could still use more, please subscribe using your credit card.

The Internet is the biggest printing press in the world, but it is easily stopped by governments. We own our printing presses and no one can stop us from printing what we want. Google now has a very interesting webpage measuring government censorship, partly to inform and partly to shame the governments involved. (I think Rosenthal is refering to http://www.google.com/transparencyreport/governmentrequests/) Repressive regimes require licenses for Xerox machines which they know can be used as printing presses.

The Internet could be controlled here. What would happen today with the Pentigon Papers?

You can do more with online ads, take an immediate sale, but they make it really hard on news organizations. CNN fills dead air time with live coverage of bus crashes and other stories that really shouldn't be reported, we can get pulled into the same thing. "It's out there," can be an excuse to cover rumors like the CIA pushing cocaine to exploit certain groups.

Citizen journalists aren't journalists, they are witnesses. Internet powerful tools for reporters, sometimes its better to look for witness online rather than with shoe leather at the scene of a fire. But the opinions posted on blogs aren't news.

Political strategy in Washington right now is "shut this guy down," and the nature of politics right now that nobody debates anything, and that's too bad.

I asked Rosenthal if he'd attended a precienct caucus while he lived in Colorado, he didn't. He doesn't see  how the debate he feels is so important is stimulated by neighborhood caucuses, so I suggested that he read Grassroots Rules http://www.sup.org/book.cgi?isbn=0804758034 and ME Springlemeyers series on the 2008 Iowa Caucuses http://blogs.rockymountainnews.com/sprengelmeyer/

This afternoon he shared his thoughts with journalism students at DU http://blogs.du.edu/today/news/alum-nyt-editor-not-worried-about-the-future-of-newspapers
Contact Managers

There are so many choices today, it's hard to know how to keep track of business and personal contact information. What works for you?

I've signed up for the single user version of Salesforce.com, but have found it just too hard to learn. Has anyone else had that problem?

Highrise is great in many ways, very user friendly, but I had a telemarketer working from home using it and she made a big mistake. She followed my instructions! As a result the tagging system is clogging it up, and I haven't been able to figure out a quick fix. Has anyone else had that problem.

Outlook 2010 looks much more powerful and I'm going to give it a try. I'm on Plaxo and Linked In, but don't spend much time with either one.

Some days I wish my old index card system was still in place! How about you? Are you using the computer to keep track of contacts? If you know of a good current article about this topic, if you'd post a link here or email it to me I'd be very grateful!

Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks?

Another change for me: I'll be posting here and on our Small Business Chamber of Commerce blog http://www.sbccblog.com/ more often as a result of attending Splashmedia's CEO Bootcamp on Social Media yesterday. For more see what I just posted on the SBCC blog.

Many of the posts I've been making on Facebook will now be here, and I may even set up a real website that I control rather than relying on the goodwill of Blogger.com and Facebook.com for my posts.

How about you? Where do you invest most of your online time? Website? Blog? Linked In? Facebook? Twitter? The choices are endless, how do you decide which tools to use, and how is that working for you.

Today I'm attending the University of Denver alumni weekend, if you are there let's sit together at dinner, OK?