26 March 2015

A case study in team culture. #SAvNZ, World Cup 2015.

Obviously I'm gutted. There were tears. There were heart palpitations. There were screams of joy. There were also screams of pain. That New Zealand vs South Africa semi final was one of the best cricket games I've had the honour of watching. You can "if and but" this all you like - we were outplayed. Just.

What makes me a little sad, is that if this Protea team had gone on to win the World Cup, there would have been books and case studies written on what an amazing job they've done with building team culture. Now that they lost in the semi, the truly remarkable side of that unit will probably not be talked about.

You can see how tight that team is. You've been able to see it for years now. Michael Hussey even commented on it when he was doing is consulting stint. No ego. Team centric. Respectful. It's not only on the field, but in how they talk to the media. Always taking accountability, always praising the bowler before or the batsmen before.

Selfless media behaviour isn't something you see a lot of these days.

To take all those different cultures, religions, skills, personalities and to mould them into such a tight, functional unit is incredible. I hope someone talks about this factor a bit more - because I'd love to know how they did it.

In celebration of that team, I've just joined the Official Proteas Supporters Club. Silver membership. Having regrets now as the "kids coaching clinic with the players" sounds like something I should have done. Might upgrade. Wrote about the Supporters Club before if you're interested.

Well played boys. You did us proud. England are F#$!@* when they come here in December.

Now have a little drizz with this "thank you" video.

12 March 2015

ZA Tech Show. We’re baaaaaaack… [PODCAST]

After too long off the mic and several false starts, the ZA Tech Show resumes this week (this week being a little while ago, but hey - AH).

Brett Haggard and Andy Hadfield (who’s now plying his entrepreneurial prowess at forgood) talk about why there’s been a delay in the show coming out and where you can now find it.

More importantly, they dive into a discussion about:

  • Fibre in Parkhurst;
  • Toby Kurien’s uber-smart R1200, solar-powered, load-shedding solution;
  • Andy’s involvement in forgood; and
  • The Greek finance minister (he used to work at Valve Software).

Our technology picks of the week are:

  • Andy picks #rak15 and News24’s ‘grid-watch’ web-app;
  • Brett picks OpenEmu and Beersmith 2

09 March 2015

Introducing the Official Proteas Supporters Club (OPSC)...

There's usually one common theme throughout great cricketing nations: fanatical fans. The sea of blue that met us in the Indian World Cup 2015 game. The stories everyone tells of the passion of the West Indies fan base, no matter how small the island they reside on is. The ferocity of the English Cricketing Media (where passion is executed through criticism, not always the best). The Barmy Army. The fact that Australia can fill a 90k seater stadium regularly.

However tough the World Cup is turning out - and even though the ups and downs of cricket make an HBO series look tame (that's why we like it). We need to remain fanatical fans.

With the enormous amount of sport on TV at the moment, I've doubled down on cricket. There just isn't enough time to watch everything. So cricket it is.

And therefore I'd like you, dear Reader, to make yourself a fanatical fan and support the #ProteaFire. Here's some info on the newly launched Official Proteas Supporters Club. And some cool prizes you can win by referring friends. There is no better way to get deeper into cricket that by immersing yourself in the culture.

So here's the challenge. Refer 4 friends and get them all to sign up to a Silver or Gold membership
  • The first 100 members win signed Proteas Shirts 
  • PLUS you and your friends who sign-up get a guaranteed invite to an exclusive braai with the Proteas later in the year. 
What are you waiting for?! Be a part of the Official Proteas Supporters Club (OPSC).

And here's an example of some of the content released as part of the OPSC. I gotta say, the benefits of the paid membership far outweigh the content. But content is cool. VIP Access into Stadiums sounds like something really worth investigating.

This was a paid for post. However, you shouldn't care. I gave up watching the greatest rugby team in the world outside of The Springboks (The Stormers) - just so I could watch more cricket. I'm all in :)

26 February 2015

My #RAK15 video for Joburg Child Welfare

#RAK15 - Random Acts of Kindness 2015. A really cool social upliftment campaign started by Brent Lindeque off the back of tweaking #NekNominations last year into a force for good instead of a force for down-downs.

The 2015 campaign seems to have quite a bit of traction already, starting on our shores with a launch on Carte Blanche and swiftly hitting the US, UK and other markets.

The idea is simple. Make a video of your random act of kindness and nominate 3 people to do the same. Post video. Share share share.

We had an interesting debate on the ZA Tech show about the egotistical element of the campaign. Some may think the "look at me look at me as I do good" behaviour isn't the greatest. But I have to say, both myself and Brett Haggard (host) ended up agreeing that the goodwill and behaviour change the campaign encourages far outweighs any vanity elements. The vanity causes the sharing (seeding it into social platforms) unfortunately, so like the selfie stick, we'll have to put up with it.

Anyhoo! When Brent and I met for the first time a while back we chatted about how forgood could be used for people to connect with Causes and create some cool RAKs. So that's what I did. This is 25% "How To" video and 75% just awesome RAK for an awesome Cause.


forgood - the story so far (26 Feb 2015)

Thought I'd share with you some of the highlights of the first 4 weeks of my new startup, forgood. This is an extract from the newsletter that just bombed out to thousands of people in our ecosystem. Some really nice links to explore and stats to consume.

Our philosophy? Stop sitting back and waiting for "government" and other people to solve this country's grand challenges. Sure, they have a role to play, an important role at that - but the revolution wasn't born at home. It's up to all of us. How do you start? With one small step.

Click around, have fun, please let us know about your experiences by emailing the team.

--- snip ---

Hola! :D

A month since we launched and some cool things are happening on forgood. We have over 150 Causes signed up (more than double last month). We've also connected more than 120 people (volunteers and donors) to Causes. Take it you guys and gals like the product? :)

It's been so much fun getting to know the Causes on forgood. Would you like to meet a few?

  • Gozololo Centre for Needy Children. DURBAN, KZN. They look after 2000 vulnerable children from broken families. Heartwarming stuff (and a really cool name)!
  • The People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals. SOWETO, JHB. They spend their time taking care of animals who need veterinary care.  From purebred dogs to real mongrels – at the PDSA they can quickly get back to tail-wagging state again!
  • Stitch & Bitch. ROODEPOORT, JHB. Yes, that’s their name! Enough said. Check out their profile page to find out more.

One of the primary features of forgood is these Causes can create Needs that you, our awesome users, can respond to. This means the Cause can get exactly what they need - right now - and makes us a community a lot more effective.

Our most popular Needs at the moment are:

If you can’t find a Need you want to help with, you can be pro-active and Create an Offer. Don’t limit yourself. You'd be amazed at how resourceful our Causes can be and what skills they can make use of. Take a look at these Offers for some inspiration:

  • I can offer photographic services in the Durban region. All photographs will be edited and made available via dropbox, where the pics can be downloaded and printed by the concerned party.
  • I'm a retired book dealer. I can help evaluate book values for charities who often vastly under price donated items.
  • I run a small business and I've learnt a lot of lessons along the way. I'd to share this with a Cause. Everything from accounting software to invoicing to client relationships to marketing and sales. Anything I’ve learned, I'm happy to teach.

Get in touch if you have any questions!

The forgood TEAM