I’ll be there Friday! Stop in to say “hello”!
This & Every Friday!
To celebrate our new home in the Robert’s Shoes building at Lake & Chicago, we’re hosting a weekly happy hour on Fridays from 3 to 6pm. Stop by anytime for a cup of coffee, tea, wine or beer. Learn what we’ve been up to, relax, brainstorm or share your…
Last week we joined friends and colleagues at the La Belle Vie lounge to celebrate 2012 and the launch of our brand-new web site. Check it out! Tell us what you think. (Pictured above, me (Molly Priesmeyer) and Karen Kopacz. We’re in the bathroom of La Belle Vie. Because we’re classy like that.)
Additional photos are posted here, on our Facebook page. Like us there, and get updates about cool events and organizations, businesses, and entrepreneurs doing good things in the Twin Cities and beyond.
We also just launched our Good Workshop, a new project for 2012. It’s a one-day strategizing session that’s perfect for small businesses and organizations looking for new ways to connect with and inspire their audience through storytelling, contenty strategy, design, social media, and more.
Want to participate in a one-day Good Workshop? Contact us today to set it up! We’re here to help you do good work.
A couple of months ago we posted about a super-exciting project, A Public Thing, an open space for public conversations in-person, in print, and online. It’s on ongoing community-engagement and publication project Good Work Group is helping to organize with the folks at Works Progress, Sarah Peters, Sam Gould from Red76, Molly Balcom Raleigh, and a growing group of artists, designers, and writers.
A Public Thing is looking to gather again this spring, this time centered around the concept of financial fitness. We’ve signed up to be part of GOOD Magazine’s "Good Maker" project, which will help us carve out new ideas, solutions, and resources for a collectively authored newspaper that will be distributed after the event.
You can help us be a Good Maker by voting for our project as part of GOOD’s 30-day challenge to get Financially Fit.
By voting for A Public Thing, you will help us create 2,000 copies of our next newspaper, focused on financial fitness, engagement, and ideas that have the potential to change the way we think, work, and live.
Thanks for voting!
We’re a little late on this, but we just yesterday discovered via Twitter RovernightNetwork, an online community of dog owners willing to watch one another’s pets during overnight trips.
RovernightNetwork has communities in Chicago and here in the Twin Cities. From their website:
Rovernight Network provides members access to fellow dog owners and the opportunity to connect with other members who may be available to provide overnight dog care in their homes. Members can search for other members using a variety of search criteria, and can view their rating and feedback history provided by other members.
This is a fantastic example of an entirely user-based online community. First of all, joining is free. The goal here is to build community, not profit.
And the creators have built a online community based on real needs: Where can I send my dog when I’m away overnight that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg (er…a paw)? How can I find people near me for dog play dates? I want to rescue a dog, but I am afraid I won’t be able to find people to help when I need it. Where can I find like-minded people?
Of course, that doesn’t mean that Rovernight Network doesn’t have opportunities to profit from their community building. There are advertising opportunities, of course, and also possible premium membership opportunities.
But at the heart of RovernightNetwork is simply a desire to solve a problem that so many dog owners face, and an innovative way of building a trustworthy, connected community around that need.
We’re excited about lots of new changes in 2012: We’re working on a new web site for Good Work Group; starting our Good Workshops for small businesses and organizations; meeting with fantastic new clients about proposals and ideas for content strategy, social engagement, and outreach; and planning days filled with co-working at new collaborative creative spaces with some of our favorite people in the Twin Cities.
For starters, one day a week we’ll be at CoCo Minneapolis in the Grain Exchange. There, our “co-workers” will include a number of tech companies, start-ups, and creative entrepreneurs, as well as our friends in the Citizens League.
We’re also going to be co-officing with our friends at Works Progress, in the Roberts Shoes building on Lake and Chicago. This Twin Cities creative collaborative is led by artists Shanai Matteson and Colin Kloecker, who are responsible for some of the most innovative and exciting programs and events around, including Give and Take; Solutions Twin Cities; and Salon Saloon.
I wrote about Kloecker and Matteson for The Line Media in 2010 and had this to say about them:
They connect people and ideas like puzzle pieces. They’re like masterful city planners, if a city were built on human links instead of crumbled highways. And they turn fostering new connections, building community, and promoting future-forward ideas into an art form.
Since Good Work Group is also about fostering new connections, telling the stories that matter, connecting Good organizations and businesses to their audience, and helping to support creativity and “good” in the Twin Cities, we’re incredibly excited to share work and brain space with Twin Cities innovators who are leading the charge.
Come by CoCo Minneapolis on Mondays or Tuesdays to say “hello!” And look for creative Friday happy hours to start happening at the Works Progress space soon.
Happy New Year!
Here at Good Work Group, we like to start off the New Year thinking about opportunities and growth, both personal and business.
For example: We’ve dusted off our snow shoes and polished our boots in hopes we’ll spur the snow gods to shake the frozen dust from their feathers and give us a good reason to explore the local parks. (Fingers and snow shoes crossed!)
We’re also incredibly excited to announce our new Good Workshops, launching in January. We believe this is a wonderful opportunity to help small businesses and organizations in the Twin Cities explore new ideas and strategies for growth.
At a Good Workshop, we will spend a day with you and your business helping you better understand opportunities for:
- Social engagement
- Public relations
- Online marketing
- Community outreach and participation
One of the hardest things for a business and organization to do is to distill its mission and goals into a clear story that generates action.
After a series of interviews and an extensive brand analysis, we will leave you with with a clear set of goals for improving your messaging and brand, including strategies and action plans.
Get in touch with Molly or Karen today to set up your Good Workshop and start 2012 on a Good track!
A new local start-up, Buyer Curious, seeks to help home buyers leverage more power in real-estate transactions. Instead of negotiating via a third party, Buyer Curious lets prospective home buyers negotiate with and speak directly to the home owner.
At Good Work Group, we believe the companies and organizations that offer users more power and transparency will become the true success stories as people become increasingly savvy and desire more control over their interactions and purchasing decisions.
Good Ideas start with building trust, transparency, community, and consumer power.
We’re excited to see how this idea unfolds locally and across the country.
*Note: We’ve never liked the word “consumer.” It sounds like some sort of alien being whose only function is digestion of toxic waste from dead lakes. However, in this case we just used it to make a point about “authority.” Don’t be mad at us. We’re really sorry to bring up that image of the weird crusty alien.
(H/T The Line Media.)
At Good Work Group, we believe the Twin Cities are bursting with smart, passionate people who can learn a lot from one another. Just today, for example, while we were hanging out at Peace Coffee chatting with our clients E-Democracy, we met a web/app developer focused on community engagement tools. Awesome, right? These things happen nearly every day. This city is overflowing with creative change-makers.
That’s why we’re excited about tomorrow’s Net Impact event, which promises to bring together local leaders in socially sustainable small businesses to discuss ways mission-driven businesses are driving social and environmental change.
Entrepreneurs from Peace Coffee, Quality Bike Products, Eureka Recycling , and more will discuss how mission-based businesses are helping individuals, businesses, and organizations impact not only the local community, but the world at large.
We’re always excited to connect with people who share our goal of improving the Twin Cities.
Looking for some inspiration to start a “good” business of your own? Register for the event! It’s free for all, with a suggested donation at at the door!
Recently, we’ve noticed a handful of cool shops and businesses finding a birthplace in unique locations, including people’s homes. Different than “pop-up” shops that use revolving retail spaces, these new shops rely on invite-only sales or single-day sales that invite customers into unique spaces.
At Brown University, a pair of students host a once-a-month underground bakery, offering up gourmet fare such as sweet homemade pizzas to the 80 or so students who are members of a secret listserv.
From the Brown Daily Herald:
Jones and Marion came up with the idea for the project while brainstorming how to transform their love of baking and cooking into a plausible business. The bakery was inspired by a secret restaurant in Providence that has since been shut down. “We were hoping to provide a community around food,” Marion said. “Also a social setting for college students on a Saturday night that is not going out to a frat party.”
When the bakery began, the pair hoped it would one day turn into a restaurant with more savory dishes, but, Marion said, “At this point, it seems that a late-night bakery is a good way to attract more of a collegecrowd.”
Of course, the Twin Cities wouldn’t be the Twin Cities without its own underground bakery. Here in Powderhorn Park, the site of Good Work Group “headquarters”, neighbors gather every Wednesday at the home of Margaret and Shelly, also known as the Front Porch Bakery. Not only is it a way for Margaret and Shelly to do what they love and have a business with low overhead and less commitment, but it brings neighbors together every week over a shared love of gourmet goods.
Good ideas don’t need lots of money to take off: They just need a commitment to building community and creating products/concepts that matter.