Talk is Cheap - The Art of Conversation Leadership
He spoke at Canrock Ventures (He is great and entertaining).
He wrote a book - Talk is Cheap - The Art of Conversation Leadership.
McCann was a social worker working in a boys home and needed some extra money so got a job tending bar part time. He took the job partly because he was shy and knew he needed to learn to talk to people.
There he met the owner of a flower shop. The flower shop owner mentioned he wanted to retire so McCann suggested he work there part time for a few weekends to see if he liked the business. He did so he bought a tiny, one location, flower shop.
He went to a conference and met Ted Turner who was just starting CNN. He scraped together a small ad budget and places some ads. Then a war happened and all other advertisers pulled their ads and Turner convinced 800-flowers to stay (and I think ran extra ads at no extra cost). CNN's marketshare soared from 4 to 40% during the war and 800-flowers was the sole sponsor. Business boomed.
So 1-800 Flowers toll free charges went through the roof and ATT called to see if McCann would do a customer testimonial ad that ATT paid for. The ad was a success and resonated so ATT asked if they could do another series featuring McCann and then ATT sponsored the olympics. So 1-800 Flowers was featured on the olympic ads at ATT's expense. Business soared.
In the book, McCann talks about conversation. About really listening to people and the power of that. I know he is sincere in his practice of this art.
McCann talks about conversing. Across hierarchies, for intimacy (not efficiency), across multiple mediums etc.
I loves that he promotes - "Never Stop Learning".
McCann recognizes that technology (like social media) amplifies a message and in part it amplifies the negative because of the anonymity and ease of it. It is easy to blast someone who is faceless on Twitter - much harder than doing it face to face.
The book is filled with interesting stories that make it easy to read and really drives points home.
McCann is a natural marketer (in a good way) and it works well since he sells a product that everybody can buy.. Writing a book like this is a natural extension of that marketing.
Great book which I enjoyed even more because of my personal connection with the man.
I am intrigued by the challenge of feeding the world. Like energy, the lowest hanging fruit (no pun intended) is conservation. Apparently 40% of the food produced in the US is wasted (I suspect it is actually higher).
I know I personally have always been appalled by food waste. I think that is why I always make soup. It is a great way to use close to 100% of the food.
Trader's Joe has an interesting food concept (under a different label)- selling expired food.