Weekend Briefing No. 19

Welcome to the weekend! Get outside and enjoy the sun… but before you do, read the weekend briefing so you’ll be equipped with interesting facts to chat with your friends about and they will acknowledge that you are, indeed, the most intelligent friend they have.



Shift from digital to tangible. Think about what you do all day… what’s your finished product? More than likely, it’s a digital not a physical product. The post-industrial American work force is increasingly a “knowledge economy” pumping out pixels rather than physical stuff. For a generation that grew up largely digital still has a latent desire to create physical products – witness the rise of artisanal cheese, beef jerky, knives, and yes even pencils coming out of Brooklyn. The next generation of smart digital products will enhance analog experiences. One of my favorite company’s tapping into this move from digital to physical is Timeshel – a startup that seamlessly prints and delivers 30 quality printed photos / month to your doorstep in a beautiful case. They are getting significant buzz in the tech world, Bijan Sibat – early stage investor in pretty much every epic success in silicon valley – calls it one of his favorite iOS apps, and TechCrunch just did a write up on them.


Millenials want purpose at work. According to a recent survey, more than 50% of Millenials said that a company’s involvement in various causes influenced whether they accepted a job. It’s not the top factor that decides whether they take a position, but it ranks in the top three (what a company does and its work culture are the top two). Some 92% of millennial employees said that they enjoy these experiences; that number drops over time to 81% of employees who have worked at a company for more than five years. Is this due to waning interest with age or poor choice of volunteering activities? Understand more by reading this Fast Company article.


Have you created your ‘culture deck’? Culture has often been seen as a fluffy add-on to the core business of a company that doesn’t create calue. But what I’ve found in my research for Profit & Purpose is that the organizations that succeed long term nail their culture at the outset and continue to refine it as they scale. Culture is simply a set of routines and daily commitments that accelerate your work and ensure it reflects your values. I just found a great deck that you should look at from an organization called Possible – a healthcare provider for 260,000 people in rural Nepal – on First Round Capital’s blog. See the full deck HERE. Use it as a template to make your own.


Delivering aid is becoming increasingly dangerousOn Monday, a series of aerial bombs struck Sudan’s South Kordofan province, home to communities who are sympathetic to the newly formed country of South Sudan. Two bombs in particular struck a hospital run by the humanitarian medical organization Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders. Of course, Khartoum denies any involvement. Unfortunately this targeting of non-combatant aid workers is becoming more and more common. Dig deeper into this story on VICE.


r > g In case you’ve been hiding under a rock in the last month, r > g is the new world-wide rockstar of economics Thomas Piketty’s formula for stating that the rate of return on capital is higher than the rate of global economic growth. The result is concentration of wealth and greater income inequality. His 700-page book has remained on the top of the best sellers list and the media is swooning over him (including a Businessweek cover of Piketty as a teen heartthrob)… everybody except Mr. Colbert. Watch this hilarious VIDEO to see Piketty vs. Colbert.



The science behind living happily ever after. Ever wonder what makes for a long-term happy marriage? Turns out there’s some scientific answers to that. Hint: we can learn something from arranged marriages and excitement is more important than romance. Happily ever ain’t easy, but applying these tips may make it more attainable.

I’m interested in your thoughts. If you have any story ideas, questions or just want to say hi, shoot me an email at [email protected]. If you have friends that would like the WEEKEND BRIEFING, please forward it along. They can sign up for free HERE. Follow me on twitter for updates throughout the week.

Have a restful & thoughtful weekend.