28 June, 2011 - 08:42 By News Desk

Day 55 - Paul Dunn, We Have a Crush on You. Wow!

'The only reason to give a talk is to change the world'. We were fortunate to have the world-changing Paul Dunn with us on Friday, as he journeyed from Birmingham (normally Singapore) to offer us his afternoon.

It's no surprise Paul would be receptive to an opportunity to help, as he's known for finding ways to make a huge impact. His latest company B1G1 (Buy1Give1) facilitates transaction-based giving, enabling companies to offer deals such as 'buy a pair of shoes, and a pair of shoes gets donated' or 'for every x pounds spent with us, a child gets clean water for the day'. One of the Springboard companies uses B1G1 to make a positive impact from transactions, and now it's clear to all of us why they are such big fans. Speaking of which, major thanks to Kaila for coordinating this!

 A very humble, curious, genuine guy, Paul brightened up the room as soon as he walked in. There was just something warm about his presence as he walked around the Springboard office and chatted away, and the energy sure was helpful for a late Friday afternoon. He taught us so many lessons in his energetic presentation, ranging from creating products/messages that WOW to decision-making to the power of shared beliefs. Some of our own WOW moments included:

- UnaVita cafe uses a toothpick and 6 seconds of handiwork to transform a cup of Joe into 'inspirational coffee'. Ask yourself, what's YOUR toothpick?!

- 'People don't buy what you do. They buy WHY you do what you do.' People will do business with you not simply because you fulfil a need, but when they feel that they share your same belief system.

- The limbic lobe of your brain is where you make decisions, and it has no capacity for language. We try to back up decisions with logic/reason/analysis, but the first 'gut decision' you make – in your limbic cortex – is the decision you should trust.

- There's a new 'Generation G' which believes in Gratitude, Generosity, and Giving. Not Greed! It doesn't matter if you're 6 or 60, this is a generation that isn't based on when you were born.

- 'When the sense of purpose is big enough, people will do AMAZING things... When your sense of purpose is big enough, your business transforms.'

We were all suitably inspired from the discussions, and with the fresh new buzz teams then had a chance to practice their 5 minute pitches. In light of the presentation, one team actually threw out their usual spiel and tried an off-the-cuff version instead, which worked remarkably well! It felt safe in our intimate and cozy setting, and Paul helped each team highlight the WOW factor they should be drawing more attention to - be it sales doubling month-after-month, winning a significant competition, or a huge untapped market opportunity.

Unlike most pitching events, the exercise felt more AA support group rather than X Factor competition, and teams appreciated getting feedback from each other at the same time. It was as close as we've come to a giant group hug, and I'm sorry to be so mushy but judging by the resulting feedback I think we all fell in love with Paul.

With a guy who espouses a mission of 'we create a world that's full of giving ... because that's a happy world', can you blame us?


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