All posts by Jackie Abrams

Marsha Wright

Marsha Wright

Interview: How to Build Strategic Alliances with Marsha Wright

Marsha Wright is a serial-entrepreneur, four time #1 bestselling author, speaker, and columnist. She has an impressive array of business interests all over the world. In addition to growing her own businesses and portfolio, she has become a well known business expert, which has resulted in her appearing on TV, in newspapers and magazines and on radio internationally.

Below is a summary of our interview:

Quote

“To each there comes in their lifetime a special moment when they are figuratively tapped on the shoulder and offered the chance to do a very special thing, unique to them and fitted to their talents. What a tragedy if that moment finds them unprepared or unqualified for that which could have been their finest hour.”

― Winston Churchill

Her Journey

For the last six months, Marsha has been traveling. And she’ll be doing another 6 months of traveling. She travels with her husband. Her business range from consulting to media. She has an acquisitions company, as well. Her husband and herself started on her journey in 1998. They’ve been together 16 years.  An inkling that she knew was going to be in business started when she was 7 years old. She’s the oldest of 3 and her brother is closest in age. They’d go to the corner shop for really cheap sweet candy in a big bag and get small bags, then break up the candies and put them in the small bag and sell them in the playground. She didn’t realize what she was doing was entrepreneurial at the time, but she just had fun. Her mom was a single mom. Her dad was already in prison at that time. Marsha was independent at a very early age. Between the ages of 8 and 12, she was in and out of group homes, she had difficulty in school, and she didn’t know how to deal with her experience when she was eight. Working through that process with a social worker, she had a good relationship with, helped her and made a huge impact in her life. At 7 months old, she had been walking. So she was always very advanced. She didn’t want to put up with the way the world worked and wanted to question everything. Being inquisitive helped Marsha build the career that she has today.

Low Point

The time when she was 8 years old and experienced being sexually assaulted. She really didn’t know how to deal with that.

Aha Moment

Getting into the strategic alliance business and becoming an authority on the subject wasn’t a quick thing. Strategic alliances aren’t just one single project. it’s looking intrinsically at one relationship. Marsha wants to give to the relationship as much as she’s able to receive. Quite unwittingly, she was doing strategic alliances and collaborations the whole of her career.

Marsha’s work now 

Marsha’s book, Secret Collaborative Economy, launched last year in June 2013 and she wrote the book in 5 days. One of her mentors had said “it took you 5 days to write it, but it took you 15 years to get that knowledge.” She did need an interview . She promoted the book to over 1 million people. She did a huge promotion on it; Twitter was exploding. And she celebrated a best seller in over six countries. It was the hottest new marketing book. But the point was all of her promotion was through collaboration.

What’s exciting Marsha now

She’s excited about this new contest for entrepreneur that she launched,called Ace Your Business. Prizes will be handed out. Continue listening to get that website address! Do not go away.

Lightning Round

Book Marsha Recommends

[easyazon_block add_to_cart=”default” align=”center” asin=”B008NQPC42″ cloaking=”default” layout=”top” localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” tag=”purposerockst-20″]

Helpful Habit:

Waking up early. Reading a lot more. Being very focused.

Helpful Person:

Bypassing the obvious choices like her family and husband, she has to shout out to Jos Hall. He is her friend and, in addition to her husband, he’s been the most influential person.

Internet Resource

She uses website called ManageFlitter.com. At this moment she has over 55,000 followers.

What’s Your Purpose

To create a place where people can truly build their families and their businesses and make something wonderful happen. She is building a legacy that won’t be forgotten and her legacy lived on.

Where to follow Marsha

Marsha Wright is on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, daily. She responds to her Twitter messages herself.

www.marshawright.com (where you can find her bio and her pictures)

Free to enter contest is www.bit.ly/AceYourBiz

Parting Words

Her parting words are: “Be ready. Don’t procrastinate. Ask for help. Do something that scares you at least once a week. Do not settle ever.”

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

One More Thing

If you enjoy this interview, please take some time to rate and review us on iTunes or Stitcher.

Follow @PurposeRockstar

Alex Avina

Interview: How to Make History with Alex Avina

Alexander Avina is a Professor of History at Florida State University. His work focuses on Latin American history, specifically in Mexico.

Below is a summary of our interview:

Quote

“Here, by the downslip of hills, facing the sunset and time’s muzzle, near gardens with severed shadows, we do what the prisoners do, and we do what the unemployed do: we nurture hope.”

His Journey

Most of his story is actually depended on the bravery of his parents who are undocumented migrants who came here to the United States from Mexico in the late 70’s. They took Alex and his siblings to the best public schools in southern California. He had some “hard ass parents” at home when it came to getting good grades and obtaining an education.  There was the sentiment that if Alex didn’t fulfill their goals, which was to attain higher education, then he was wasting the sacrifice that his parents his made. He also played soccer growing up which got him financial aid he needed to get to St. Mary’s College in northern California. His first year there he met Dr. Myrna Santiago, who became his mentor throughout college. She allowed him the ability to navigate the college experience and kept him on the academic path. She’s largely responsible for his goal in attaining a post-graduate career in academia, particularly History. Next, he attended University of Southern California for his Doctorate in History. He was there for seven years, plugging away course work, finished his doctorate in 2009, and came to Florida State as his first academic job.

Low Point

There were two moments: the first was when he was 12 years old, his parents were trying to their status whether they were able to stay in the country as legal citizens. They had to leave the country and go to Mexico and a few times they weren’t able to go back to the U.S. and his parents were able to become citizens. The second time was during his first semester in graduate school, Alex didn’t think it was for him. He was trying to decide if he was going to stay or if he was going to go and when he saw his high grades, he decided he belonged there.

Aha Moment

Alex doesn’t know if he’s found that moment yet, but there have been a few times he had hints. The first was when he finished his dissertation, he got to Tallahassee, he walked up to his office and saw his name ‘Dr. Alexander Avina’ on the door,  he said “alright, I think I’m doing this.” He also felt the most validation the moment he received a University teaching award.

Alex’s work now  

His area of concentration is in modern Mexican history, specifically post World War 2. Alex looks at civilizations in the country side and the cultures of rural Mexico.

Alex delves into a story about the time he was able to interview a man who had a son that became a rural school teacher in the guerrilla movements. His son joined the movements and was captured and disappeared.  They were never told how he died. In 2006, because of his  the efforts of human rights activists in Mexico, they found the remains of his son, so he could give his son a proper burial. Alex interviewed this individual after this. Alex was welcomed into his home and was told this story with such a dry sense of humor, that is so rare. His story was amazing to Alex because it served as a great motivation to get the story out. Alex’s research project involves the drug wars in Mexico. There are horrific levels of violence going on that Alex wants people to know what’s going on and the Alex has an uncle disappear due to a trafficking group. His biggest challenge is how to do this drug war project in a way that doesn’t frighten his employer and develop a feasible research project. But it’s exciting because he finished his first book that he had been working on for a long time.

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

Lightning Round

Book Alex Recommends

Empire’s Workshop

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”center” asin=”0805083235″ cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/518tfbTwaAL._SL160_.jpg” tag=”purposerockst-20″ width=”107″]

Helpful Habit:

That was writing every day. He writes between 9am and 12pm, every day.

Helpful Person

His mentor from St. Mary’s College, Dr. Myrna Santiago. Since 2008, the most helpful person has been his wife, Ryanne.

Internet Resource

Democracy Now, a radio show for news on the go.

What’s Your Purpose

To teach a generation of Americans how the history of Latin America continue to influence their every day lives, even if it’s not very apparent.

Where to follow Alex

He has a Twitter handle @Alexander_Avina.

Parting Words

Think critically and analyze things, to go beyond the surface.

One More Thing

If you enjoy this interview, please take some time to rate and review us on iTunes or Stitcher.

Follow @PurposeRockstar

Chad Watkins

Chad Watkins

Interview: How to educate yourself on Wine with Chad Watkins

Chad Watkins is the founder of  UnCommongrape.com, where you can learn about wine in an unpretentious way. We talk about his leap from a retail job to striking out on his own and doing what he loves – drinking wine.

Below is a summary of our interview:

Quote

From 1 Timothy 5:23, “Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.”

His Journey

Well, Chad couldn’t believe he’d end up working with wine. It wasn’t that big of a deal while growing up. His family would have wine occasionally at holidays. But he didn’t see it becoming a profession of his. When he was in college, he studied History and French language. So that took him to France, and studied there for 1 year. While there, he not only learned about the French language, he also learned about their culture – wine is a big part of that. And Chad is an academic at heart. When he was in France he wasn’t even 21. But he made wine a big part of his life after turning of age. He started working at a small wine boutique shop, because they focused on small, artisanal producers. He barely heard of the larger producers like Robert Mondavi or Beringer when he was there. But he had to find a “real job” so he went to use his French degree writing abstracts for French periodicals for an online publishing. It was the most boring job he could’ve possibly had.  After 6 months there, he left and moved to New Jersey. Then, he found a job working part-time at a wine store, Gary’s Wine and Marketplace. And that exposed him to some amazing wine producers. Within 2 years he was helping run one of the stores and doing well. He had a great education there, but he wasn’t happy. It wasn’t the lifestyle or the type of life he was looking for. And due to the time spent in France, he wanted a more slow paced, laid-back lifestyle. He wasn’t fulfilled. Instead, he set out to find some value in building relationships with people.

Low Point

Almost from late 2012 to holiday 2013, Chad experienced a really difficult time. It was his career at the retail store  that was stressful and strenuous on him.  He was sure that contributed to his appendicitis and checking into the hospital. It was an eye-opening experience, and he wanted out of the wine business.

Aha Moment

When Chad started (un)commongrape, he realized it allows him to be creative and flexible and really allows him to pursue what he’s passionate about.

Chad’s work now  

Earlier this year, in January, he launched (un)commongrape. It’s his project on educating and helping people make wine a part of their life. wine is meant to be enjoyed, not collected. It’s meant to enhance your meals, your life and your gathering.

(un)commongrape is about making wine accessible to more people. It’s not only good for the rich or luxurious. You don’t need to spend $100 to get a great bottle of wine and you don’t need to be snobby about it. He feels that we’ve gotten comfortable with a trend of trusting the critics with the wine rating system, but he wants consumers to talking about ideas and exchanging thoughts with each other.

Chad also shed a bit of advice on developing a palate on wine. The only way to do that is to try wine. Always try new wines. Don’t try the same wine more than once. But every time you get the chance, try a new wine. In the last year, he’s probably tasted over 1,000 wines. Try any wine.

Stew Leonard’s finds a lot of sources for wine, and does a lot of private labels. They bring the cost down, too. But if you find a wine at Stew Leonard’s, know you might not be able to find it elsewhere.

3 Wine Recommendations that we think you’ll enjoy:

Reverdy Sancerre, Terre de Maimbray, from Loire, France, $23

La Rioja Alta Vina Ardanza Reserva 2000 from Rioja, Spain, $27

Elio Grasso Langhe Nebbiolo, 2008, from Piedmont, Italy, $23

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

Lightning Round

Book Chad Recommends

The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”center” asin=”1563054345″ cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zQiiCMMtL._SL160_.jpg” tag=”purposerockst-20″ width=”108″]

Helpful Habit:

Always being willing to try something new and not being afraid of change.

Helpful Person

Immediately, he said his wife had the biggest impact. Her name is Jamie.  She’s been a huge influencer in Chad’s life.

Internet Resource

winefolly.com It’s very picture oriented. They have great charts and diagrams.

What’s Your Purpose

To help other people live better lives through the experience of wine.

Where to follow Chad

Visit his website, where you can find uncommongrape’s Facebook, his Google+ and his Twitter.

Parting Words

Don’t be afraid to try wine that you’re not familiar with. There’s so much wine and you’d be doing a disservice if you didn’t try it. Discover the great wines, out there.

One More Thing

If you enjoy this interview, please take some time to rate and review us on iTunes or Stitcher.

Follow @PurposeRockstar

DanteBartolomeo

Interview: How to become an Advocate for Children with Dante Bartolomeo

Dante Bartolomeo is a State Senator for Connecticut. She represents Cheshire, Meridan, Middlefield and Middletown. Also, part of Rockfall, CT. That’s over 100,000 people. It’s actually quite a story on how she became a politician accidentally.

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

Below is a summary of our interview:

Quote

Her grandmother, who is 96, has always said, “If you’re doing something that’s important to you, you keep your list of the pluses and minus, but if the pluses are longer and if it’s important, you stick with it.”

Her Journey

Her maiden name was “Self.” Her mother’s side of the family is Italian and her dad was a third generation farmer. Her mom was very liberal. She never ever thought that she would end up in politics. She went to Colby College and graduated with a degree in Psychology. When she finished school, she got into the Hotel Sales and Marketing industry. But when she had her first child, she decided to be a stay-at-home mom, which was a good thing. Her oldest son needed special education. So she spent time in Connecticut and New York getting his special needs met. It became her full-time job getting him recognized that he had and needed services. So that was the beginning of her advocacy. Once she navigated the system, she became a volunteer, and was a community organizer. She’s quite passionate about helping children. She was also approached to join the city council, and became a liaison. Then, she was approached and asked if she would run for the Senate, and is now been in the Senate for Connecticut since early 2013.

A Low Point

Her son needed special needs at the age of 2-4 years old and she needed to devote her time to fighting for his needs. She almost had to sue people.

Aha Moment

When she realized that she would be an advocate for children.

Dante’s work now  

Dante’s job as a State Senator for Connecticut involves a large community. She is chair of the Children’s Committee. An she chairs the housing committee and a member of the education committee. She’s involved in everything that matters to her.  One of the major things she did in June 2013 was to pass a unanimous, 100% supported bill that restructured the way Connecticut approaches children’s mental health.

She came into Legislature in January 2013, right after the Sandy Hook Elementary school tragedy on December 14. 2012. So not only was it important to Dante’s children’s committee but also it was important to her and her sister, who had been adopted and was in the child welfare system. There was little to no help from the system. So from the time Dante’s sister was 14-30, she in and out of hospitals. Dante’s hope is that families are well supported and her committee is requiring multiple agencies to work together that is much more family centered.

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

Lightning Round

Book Dante recommends:

Two words – The Help.

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”center” asin=”0425245136″ cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zQ9dI1%2BgL._SL160_.jpg” tag=”purposerockst-20″ width=”98″]

Helpful Habit:

Being a perfectionist.

Helpful Person:

Millie Torres Ferguson, who has been amazingly helpful. Dante credits her.

Internet Resource:

If you go to her website, you can find everything there- senatorbartolomeo.cga.ct.gov

What’s Your Purpose?

Advocacy for children in mental health and education.

Where to follow Dante

Her website: www.danteforstatesenate.com. She is currently in campaign season.

Phone Number that she can be reached:203-440-2272

Parting Words

Thanks to Derrick for reaching out to her.

Follow @purposerockstar

Kalyan Raman

Interview: How to stay Cognitively Young with Kalyan Raman

Kalyan Raman is a professor at Northwestern University with three academic appointments. His primary is as a professor of Integrated Marketing Communications at the Medill School of Journalism, Media, and Integrated Marketing Communications and his secondary is as a professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Feinberg School of Medicine.  He is also an Affiliated Professor of Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management.  In addition to that, he obtained two PhDs 26 years apart from each other.

Below is a summary of our interview:

Quote

“We cannot be taught wisdom. We must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.”

His Journey

Kalyan grew up with two wonderful parents who pushed him to be the best he could be at school without putting pressure if he didn’t live up to their standards. That created value in education for Kalyan. When he was in school, Kalyan realized that he’s not good at memorization of descriptive material, but math came easy. Any science that required deductive reasoning and logical thinking appealed to him.

He majored in Statistics and minored in mathematics Then he started a Ph.D. in Mathematical Statistics at Purdue University. After switching to Management Science, he completed his Ph.D. in 1985. His first position was at Auburn University in Alabama, followed by a brief stint at AT&T Bell Laboratories in New Jersey, and he moved down to the University of Florida, then to the University of Michigan, and then he moved to England. In 2008, he accepted his current position at Northwestern University.

While he was living in Michigan, Kalyan began his second Ph.D. in  Electrical Engineering and focused on Neuroscience. While in England, through his wife, Lisa who was a neuroscience nurse, he met the University of Cambridge Neuroscience group. After returning to the United States in 2008, he finished his Electrical Engineering Ph.D. in 2011. For Kalyan, life is a process of continued learning.

A Low Point

He didn’t recall any event that overwhelmed him. His dad’s death was a personal tragedy in his life. It profoundly affected him, but it’s not unique to his experience. However, when he went up for tenure, he wondered how his peers would view his research.

Aha Moment

When Kalyan began his second PhD in “EE” (Electrical Engineering), a field that had always fascinated him, he focused his dissertation on neuroscience.  He saw an opportunity to make contributions to neuroscience since neurological problems share common features with electrical engineering problems. One of the key motivators for Kalyan was to increase research and funding for rare diseases. Kalyan’s Aha moment was the realization that his expertise in math would enable him to successfully obtain a Ph.D. in EE, because it is the most mathematical of all the engineering disciplines

Kalyan’s work now  

CSF

His current work involves studying cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) dynamics in the brain intracranial pressure (ICP) and shunts . There could be a number of complications with ICP when there are disorders in CSF drainage.

Resource Allocation

His work at the Medill IMC department is focused on resource allocation, specifically on the determination of the optimal communications budget and its optimal allocation across multiple media.  One of his findings is that each medium not only has its own main effect, but also enjoys synergies arising from its interaction with other media.  Taking such synergies into account when determining the optimal budget and allocation dramatically improves profitability.

Tired of waking up, going to work, and sleeping with no sense of progress? I am offering a free 30 minute one on one career coaching session just for you. In the session, I will help you create a career plan to make more progress in the next 3 months than this past year. Click here to schedule your session

Lightning Round

Book Kalyan recommends:

The Affluent Society

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”0395925002″ cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41pnIg%2BnBXL._SL160_.jpg” tag=”purposerockst-20″ width=”106″]

Discusses the toxic effects of consumption on environment.

Helpful Habit:

Curiosity and reading widely.

Helpful Person:

He singles out Lisa’s friend, Rosemary, who introduced him to the neuroscience field. And Lisa, who is his wife, is the most important person and influencer in his life.

Please check out her organization Klippel-Feil Syndrome Alliance

Internet Resource:

Wikipedia is always a great resource, but one he likes a lot is www.infoplease.com. It’s a free resource. So, that’s great!

What’s Your Purpose?

We are here for others. Kalyan finds meaning in his life by helping others.  Humanity is one large family.

Where to follow Kalyan

Find him on his Profile for Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

Parting Words

Live a life of creativity. Creative people live happily.

One of his core beliefs is the importance of “pursuing your passion without expecting rewards.”

An awesome way to spread the word

Follow @purposerockstar