Saturday, February 16, 2013

Harlem Shake!

Army version, pretty cool!

Check out this article from billboard on the history of the viral craze and some pretty cool stats!

Also, stay tuned as Magnetic Consulting is working on our version of the harlem shake, due out next week!

Monday, February 11, 2013


When You Get Kicked in the Rear, You Know You’re Out in Front

By John C Maxwell
Greek philosopher Aristotle said, “Criticism is something you can avoid easily—by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” Obviously, that isn’t an option for anyone who wants to be successful as a leader.

Good leaders are active, and their actions often put them out front. That often draws criticism. When spectators watch a race, where do they focus their attention? On the front-runners! People watch their every action—and often criticize.

Since criticism is a part of leadership, you need to learn how to handle it constructively. The following has helped me to deal with criticism, so I pass it on to you.

Know yourself.
Do you really know yourself? Are you aware of your weaknesses as well as your strengths? Where do you fall short as a person and leader? Not sure what your weaknesses are? Ask five trustworthy people close to you. They’ll be able to tell you where you come up short.

Know the criticism – and the critics.
When you receive criticism, how do you tell if it’s constructive or destructive? (Some say constructive criticism is when I criticize you, but destructive criticism is when you criticize me!) Here are the questions I ask to get to determine what kind of criticism it is:
  • Who criticized me? Adverse criticism from a wise person is more to be desired than the enthusiastic approval of a fool. The source often matters.
  • How was it given? I try to discern whether the person was being judgmental or whether he gave me the benefit of the doubt and spoke with kindness.
  • Why was it given? Was it given out of a personal hurt or for my benefit? Hurting people hurt people; they lash out or criticize to try to make themselves feel better, not to help the other person.
Stay open to change.
Let’s assume you now know yourself pretty well. You can tell when a criticism is way off-base; maybe it’s directed more at your position than at you. And you know when a criticism is 100% legitimate because it’s about a weakness that you’ve already discovered.
But what about the gray areas? The criticisms that might hold a grain of truth? A good leader stays open to improvement by:
  • Not being defensive,
  • Looking for the helpful grain of truth,
  • Making the necessary changes, and
  • Taking the high road.
Accept yourself.
Jonas Salk, developer of the Salk polio vaccine, had many critics in spite of his incredible contribution to medicine. Of criticism, he observed, “First people will tell you that you are wrong. Then they will tell you that you are right, but what you’re doing really isn’t important. Finally, they will admit that you are right and that what you are doing is very important; but after all, they knew it all the time.”

How do leaders who are out front handle this kind of fickle response from others?
The Serenity Prayer, made famous by Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step programs, gives direction in this area:
God, grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
If you have endeavored to know yourself, and have worked hard to change yourself, then what more can you do?

Forget yourself.
The final step in the process of effectively handling criticism is to stop focusing on yourself. Secure people forget about themselves so they can focus on others. By doing this, they can face nearly any kind of criticism—and even serve the critic.

I try to live out a sentiment expressed by Parkenham Beatty, who advised, “By your own soul learn to live. And if men thwart you, take no heed. If men hate you, have no care: Sing your song, dream your dream, hope your hope and pray your prayer.”

As leaders, we must always be serious about our responsibilities, but it isn’t healthy for us to take ourselves too seriously. A Chinese proverb says, “Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves. They shall never cease to be entertained.”

My friend Joyce Meyer observes, “God will help you be all you can be, but He will never let you be successful at becoming someone else.” We can’t do more than try to be all that we can be. If we do that as leaders, we will give others our best, and we will sometimes takes hits from others. But that’s okay. That is the price for being out front.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


We are cranking here at Magnetic Consulting! Starting the year off with a bang! Props to Chris, Graham and Tyler on their promotions to Lead Account Management, well deserved guys. And shout out to the whole team for finishing the month of January strong. Posting some of our best metrics to date in the company, awesome job! Our client is impressed and thats how you start of the year with incredible momentum.

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To stay up to date on all news and upcoming events! We have a charity "cornhole" tournament scheduled for this weekend benefiting Operation Smile. As well as Keys to Success slated for Feb 21-24 and our quarterly conference in San Jose slated for March 24th.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Interesting Article

Stumbled across this article this weekend and thought we would share it. From Mark Cuban's blog, you can check out this article and more: Enjoy!

Will Your College Go Out of Business Before You Graduate ?

I’ve been getting a lot of questions from High School kids asking whether or not they should go to college. The answer is yes.

College is where you find out about yourself. It’s where you learn how to learn. It’s where you get exposure to new ideas. For those of us who are into business you learn the languages of business, accounting, finance, marketing and sales in college.

The question is not whether or not you should go to school, the question for the class of 2014 is what is your college plan and what is the likelihood that your college or university you attend will still be in business by the time you want to graduate.

Still in business ? Yep. When I look at the university and college systems around the country I see the newspaper industry.

The newspaper industry was once deemed indestructible. Then this thing called the internet came along and took away their classified business. The problem wasn’t really that their classifieds disappeared. It was more that they had accumulated a ton of debt and had over invested in physical plant and assets that could not adapt to the new digital world.

When revenue fell the debt was still there, as were all the big buildings they had purchased, all those presses they had bought and the acquisitions they had made declined in value, but the debt
accumulated to pay for them never went away.

They were stuck with no easy way out.

The exact same thing is happening to our 4 year schools. You can’t go to a big state university and not see construction. Why ?

Why in the world are schools building new buildings ? What is required in a business school classroom that is any different from the classroom for psychology or sociology or english or any other number of classes ? A new library, seriously ? What is worse is that schools are taking on debt to pay for this new construction.
Think about this from a business perspective. Schools are seeing state and federal funding decline, as it should. Why should taxpayers be paying for another building ?

They are seeing their primary revenue source, tuition, once a number that was never really questioned, becoming a value decision by prospective students. As they should.

Unless your parents are wealthy or you quality for a full ride or something close, the days of picking a school because that is the school you always wanted to go to are gone.
The class of 2014 and beyond now has to prepare a college value plan. What classes are you going to take online that enables you to get the most credits for the least cost. What classes are you going to take at a local, low-cost school so you can get additional credits at the lowest cost.
Then, with your freshman and sophomore classes out-of-the-way, you can start to figure out which school you would like to transfer to, or two years from now, which online classes you can take that challenge you and prepare you for the areas you want to focus on. If you have the personal discipline you may be able to avoid ever having to step on a campus and graduating with a good degree and miracle of miracles, no debt.

For the smart student who cares about getting their money’s worth from college, the days of one school for four years are over. The days of taking on big debt (to the tune of 1 TRILLION DOLLARS as I write this ) are gone. Going to a 4 year school is supposed to be the foundation from which you create a future, not the transaction that crushes everything you had hoped to do because you have more debt than you could possibly pay off in 10 years. It makes no sense.

Which in turn means that 4 year schools that refuse to LOWER their tuition are going to see their enrollment numbers decline. It just doesn’t make sense to pay top dollar for Introduction to Accounting , psychology 101, etc.

Of course the big schools are going to argue this all day long. They want and need your money. They want to tell you how beautiful their campus is. The social aspects of going away to college. The amazing professors they have. The opportunities they create. The access to alumni and sports. All were great arguments in 2001 when tuitions were still somewhat reasonable. They no longer hold water.

So back to the economics of 4 year schools. Before you go to college, or send your child to a 4 year school you better check their balance sheet. How much debt does the school have ? How many administrators making more than 200k do they have ? How much are they spending on building new buildings. None of which add value to your child’s education, but enrollment declines will force schools to increase their tuition and nail you with other costs. They just create a debtor university that risks going out of business.

There will be colleges and universities that fail , declare bankruptcy or have to re-capitalize much like the newspaper industry has and long before the class of 2018 graduates.

The smart high school grad no longer just picks a school, borrows money and wings it. Your future depends on your ability to assemble an educational plan that gets you on your path of knowledge and discovery without putting you at risk of attending a school that is doomed to fail , and/or saddling you with a debt heavy balance sheet that prevents you from taking the chances, searching for the opportunities or just being a f*** up for a while. We each take our own path, but nothing shortcuts the dreams of a 22-year-old more than owing a crapload of money.

Now is the time to figure it out and avoid the mess schools are creating for themselves and for those who take the old school way to college graduation.