|A Note From The President |
|How Did They Do That?|
|What can Ambeck Do For You|
|Fun & Games|
|Formula For Success|
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Shirk Or Work
It is easy to sit in
And talk to the man in
It is easy to float in
a lovely boat,
And point out the places
It is easy to tell
How best he can carry
But no one can rate a
Until it has been on
Grace Bordelon Agate
If you were in Alison's situation, what would you do differently?
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Which word is a synonym?
1. Despot: Crook, Maniac, Tyrant or Princess
2. Macabre: Normal, Fable, Balanced, or Gruesome
Answers for last month's Fun & Games
1. Anger, Tender, Direct, Rented, Range
Which of the following words is missing from above? a. Green b. Final c. Credit d. Golfer
Answer: Credit, which is an anagram for direct, range is an anagram for anger and rented is an anagram for tender
2. Which is the odd number out? 36, 64, 72, 25, 9? Answer: 72 - all the others are squares
"How far you go in life depends on you being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and the strong. Because someday in life you will have been all of these." George Washington Carver
"Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth. " Muhammad Ali
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A Note From The President
This month Ambeck Edge turns two years old. Each month it warms my heart when readers tell me how much they enjoy reading this newsletter. With a newly launched website, you can easily find the back issues. Recently, a few readers approached me and asked me to print a collection of all the old issues. What I have decided to do instead is convert them into a PDF format and have it on the website. I will let you know when I have done this.
I have interviewed many people for a personal project that I was working on and one of the questions that I asked was to describe a book that you read that had a major influence on your life. About a third of the books mentioned I have read already and I made a commitment to read the others. I am always interested to see what makes people tick.
This month, I am reviewing The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, which was mentioned by two people as having a profound impact on their lives. It's interesting to note that business books do not have major influences on people. A worthy mention is that four people indicated that the Bible had a major influence on their lives. They said that it had wonderful love stories, stories about the human condition and offered rules to live by.
Since I asked others the question, I decided to ask myself that question. I have read many books, but there are three books that have influenced my life: Key to Yourself by Venice Bloodworth, The New Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz and The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz. These three books helped me to reconnect with my authentic self.
Which books have had a major influence on your life?
Until next time! Avil
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Review Of The Prophet Kahlil Gibran
This is a non-traditional review because it's also my reaction to what's been said to me. Two people indicated that The Prophet had a profound impact on their lives and they explained why. I read the book trying to understand their point of views.
The Prophet, first published in 1923 is a compilation of 26 poetic essays that deal with love, marriage, giving, work, joy and sorrow, buying and selling, laws, freedom, reason and passion, self-knowledge, talking, pleasure, death and so much more. It's beautifully written in very simple language.
The book starts off with Almustafa, the "chosen and beloved" one who has been living in a foreign country, Orphalese, where the people have embraced him for the past 12 years. His ship has returned and he must return to the land of his birth. He is saddened, but he knows that he must leave. Gibran's genius comes out in the simplicity of his writing. Almustafa asks, "How shall I go in peace and without sorrow? Nay, not without a wound in the spirit shall I leave this city. Long were the days of pain I have spent within its walls, and long were the nights of aloneness; and who can depart from his pain and his aloneness without regret? Too many fragments of the spirit have I scattered in these streets, and too many are the children of my longing that walk naked among these hills, and I cannot withdraw from them without a burden and an ache."
Almitra the "seeress," the first one to embrace him when he first arrived in Orphalese, understands that he must depart. She senses his deep longing to return to his roots, but before he leaves she wants him to impart some of his wisdom. Almitra asks, "Speak to us of Love." He responds:
"When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.
And when he speaks to you believe in him,
Though his voice may shatter your dreams as the north wind lays waste the garden... And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course..."
Various people in the community ask him to talk about various things, which result in the 26 poetic essays, which are Almustafa's responses. The book imparts words of wisdom, some of which is outlined below.
Words of Wisdom
On joy and sorrow: Your joy is your sorrow unleashed
On work: You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth... And in keeping yourself with labour you are in truth loving life
On giving: You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. For what are your possessions but things you guard for fear you may need them tomorrow?
On buying and selling: It is in exchanging the gifts of the earth that you shall find abundance and be satisfied. Yet unless the exchange be in love and kindly justice, it will but lead some to greed and others to hunger
On self-knowledge: Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights. But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart's knowledge
I enjoyed this book and I was able to see how this book could have a major influence on someone's life. I recommend The Prophet.
Did you know that in the new study No Booze? You May Lose by libertarian think-tank, the Reason Foundation, men who drink earn 10 percent more than abstainers and women drinkers earn 14 percent more than nondrinkers.
- Drinkers earn 10 to 14 percent more money at their jobs than nondrinkers and men who drink socially, visiting a bar at least once a month, bring home an additional 7 percent in pay
- According to Edward Stringham, co-author, of the study, "Social drinking builds social capital... Social drinkers are networking, building relationships, and adding contacts to their Blackberries that result in bigger paychecks."
Source: http://www.reason.org/news/alcohol_use_091406.shtml http://www.reason.org/pb44.pdf
How Did They Do That?
Challenge: The business of filmmaking is very subjective. My clients are community-based organizations, government agencies and corporate businesses. They hire me to make films and videos for their companies in the form of short documentaries, Public Services Announcements and/or corporate videos. When I'm offered a contract to make "something," usually there isn't a script attached. Usually it's just a concept. The only concrete things attached to it are the budget for the film and a delivery date. They may or may not have a research file on the subject available for me, or know the precise audience who the film is for. In addition to not having a script readily available, most of my clients didn't go to film school so they don't have the appropriate film grammar to explain what they want in the film or the film's look or style.
A major problem working this way was that most people did not understand how much time and effort goes into producing films. Because TV, and Hollywood make moviemaking look easy, people have skewed ideas what things really cost. Yet when it comes to visuals, everyone has this uncanny way of knowing what they like (and what they don't like) when they see it. An obvious business challenge working this way, was knowing what the client really wants, which means getting into the client's head and figuring out what they want me to deliver without spending too much time and money so the production can arrive on budget and on schedule.
Resolution: I educate the client about what it will take to make their film. Once attached to the job, I book a show and tell with the client. A show and tell is a creative meeting where I show segments from my previous work that may represent the feel and style of their project. For completely new ideas or concept, I present sketches, animations samples and even audio clips of what I have in mind for this new work. I'll go over the cost of producing these audio/visuals and also talk about the overall challenges of creating particular visuals or audio for our timelines. Once the client approves the ideas they want, I give them a production contract. In this contract, I incorporate as much details about the creative, including responsibilities and timelines. I also affix a budget and payment schedule so that payments are released as we achieve creative milestones such as script approval, subject selection and so on. I go off and write the script.
I don't start the actual filming until they sign off on the script. When the production is in progress, things always change and it is very easy to get sidetracked in creative conversations. When the situation is clearly defined on paper people are more able to anchor back to the overall objective and director of the job.
- 1. Establishing a creative work environment with my client takes work. I can't assume that it is just going to happen, I have to nurture it. The environment must have balance though, with a clearly defined hierarchy of who has the final say because it is easy to give in to ideas and try to satisfy the whims of everyone involved in the project
- 2. Creating this type of work environment enhances the overall execution and workflow of the project.
- 3. You can actually do more damage to your reputation as a creative person by working on projects, which lack overall vision, execution strategies or adequate support systems to help you deliver. When I started out doing this I did a lot of different things. I am very selective in what I do now
What Can Ambeck Do For You:
Ambeck Enterprise provides diverse business research and analysis services to senior executives, through the relevant distillation of diverse facts and data.
Formula for Success
Understanding my client's needs, providing good service and being passionate about what I am doing is key. I love filming and I try as hard as I can to keep abreast with technology and trends. I read a lot of film books, magazines and web sites, and I also do a lot of research for each job so I am as prepared as possible. The bottom line is that I love learning about what I do. I feel that when I know more I am better able to give my clients products they can use for a long time.
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