He is one of those people I make a big effort to pay attention to and frankly would love to meet in person.
When he’s not blogging or rocking the world of the Web, he finds time to write books and for his latest he offered a competition to designers. In addition to a cash prize of $1000 the best cover design for his new book will be selected to be the cover for his new book.
I thought that was pretty cool. Some undiscovered talent was going to suddenly be thrust into the limelight and have a great credit to their portfolio.
Apparently though this competition caused a wave of unrest and anger even with cries of "exploitation", folks quoting the rules and regulations and so on.
Whilst I was digesting all this, watching my Twitter feed, scheduling appointments for an impending trip and dealing with tasks on my To Do list all this percolated thru my cerebellum. It reminded me of an article that I read several months ago on Rodale Publishing’s Men’s Health Magazine (don’t judge me) http://www.menshealth.com/men/best-life/life-lessons/the-hazards-of-cynicism/article/2d63f48b03776210vgnvcm10000030281eac
Mike Zimmerman, the author and a pretty good writer (to understate the case) writes about "Why Men Fail" and shows from some of the successful men in business, entertainment and sports he has met and interviewed a common trait that none of them exhibit – cynicism.
This article spoke to me on many levels at the time and since and in this case with Guy Kawasaki’s competition it popped into my head again. I don’t want to rail on the folks criticizing the competition as I don’t know you all. I assume some of you are sincere in your comments but at least some of you have fallen into the cynical trap of assuming the worst here and to my mind YOU’VE MISSED THE POINT!!!
There are times even if you are on the top of your game, a big name in your field that you are going to want to indulge a bit and do work for little if not any monetary reward (short term).
I’m a QA / Testing Professional, often a manager, team leader or consultant. I have joked recently that I should start a company and call it the QA-Team and get permission to use the A-Team logo and theme to brand myself. (Yes I thought of this prior to the reboot of the TV series)
The point is that there are times when it is in your interest to think that the value of the recommendation you get or improving your exposure virally are worth more in the long term than the money itself. Now don’t get me wrong, I try not to refuse payment for my work but I’m imagining someone like Guy Kawasaki opening his contact list and letting all the relevant contacts know they should be hiring me.
At the end of the day the folks who want to see this for what it really is, a tremendous opportunity for exposure and a virally raised profile, will do so. The others won’t. I know which camp I would rather be in.