the complete creativity 100 – 1: your knowledge of “what’s out there”

So one of the most popular blogpost I have written ever is about 3 years old now, and it’s called “the complete creativity 100”. I thought about it and I want to elaborate more on advice in the blogpost- which was short sentences. So during the next year I will go through all of the 100 small pieces of advice – and when it’s done I will turn it into a book. If you want to be a part of please elaborate in the comment field.

the first advice on the list is “your knowledge of “what’s out there” makes you base your choices on your knowledge of what works and what doesn’t work”.

I think it’s really important to think about that you only base the choices you make in your life, on what you already know – and adding to that, what you have experienced works and doesn’t work. Sometimes I just think it’s important to look beyond that. Look deeper. Sometimes some of the things that didn’t work in one context, will work in another, and the other way around. So sometimes we have to look at what’s out there + then a whole lot more. I mean I always teach people that what normally puts the cherry on top when it comes to messages, viral effects and social marketing, is teaching people what they didn’t know that they really wanted to know, surprise them! -and surprise yourself by keeping your mind open.

Sometimes you have to ask yourself if what you perception of things are the absolute truth – and it would be ridiculous if it was.

I love the quote of Socrates saying “The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing” and i don’t know anything for sure – but it’s so creative and so much fun to work around it, and it leaves you humble and feeling blessed. Adding to that quote, I love the Einstein quote of “imagination is more important than knowledge” – im rooting for that one.

Epic web stuff going on at Le Web in Paris

(me on stage the day before the conference started-w00t =)

If I should put one word on  le web in Paris this year this year (also called le web 10), it would be Epic web.  I’m actually an official blogger for the conference, but I’m cookin’ up more stuff in danish than in english on that account.

However, I didn’t want to leave you guys out of all the fun here on henrietteweber.com.

For one of the first times in 5 years I have really gotten a strong feeling (as somebody referred to as the “reboot7” feeling) from a tech conference.

Don’t get me wrong,I go to a lot of conferences, and most of them are very well organized, but nothing has ever come close to the feeling I got from reboot7 in Copenhagen in 2005. Reboot7 was lifechanging for me, and leweb10 is going to be as well. So it’s right up there together with the best. I wish you all could have been there.

So, you’re probably thinking, “that all sounds well and good, but why is that? what did it have that other conferences didn’t? Well I have a sense for change, and just as I did at reboot7, I smell epic web revolution at Le Web. There was so many strong indicators that we are heading on from an internet focused on social tools, to actually starting using them to change/save the world (and not just hanging out on twitter all day).

There was so many strong messages from really strong companies and people. Like when Better Place they said that their mission was to end oil. Like when the CEO of Renault said that the car industry was f***ed if they didn’t find a way to make the car a family pet again, and they are doing it with their 100 % electrical car.Like when Gary Vaynerchuk said that every time you got asked what the ROI of social media was, you should answer “that it’s the same as the ROI of your mom”.

You can say that it might not be the the conferences fault that I got this feeling, but the program was so well designed with thought-leaders, so you couldn’t help to feel it in the air.   It’s the strongest indicator I have gotten for the beginning of a new era of the web in a while.

It was such an awesome experience to be at and feel le web 10, and I am honoured to have been a part of it.

I needed this outburst to you all. I will put more tendencies in my next newsletter, and possible also something that’s a little more down to earth I know I tend to fly high some times, but the next wave is just about to burst, I can sense it=)

Interview with the founders of Fashiolista

One of the startups I am really excited about these days is Fashiolista – based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Fashiolista works with a bookmarklet that lets you collect fashion you love. Here’s a view of my personal style on fashiolista:

For me, it gives me a total view of what I am into fashionwise, and it’s not something I have given a lot of consideration before. I would love to have a permalink so I could share my personal style with other people. I was just informed by the team that the link to my style is here.

Anyway I think that Fashiolista is going to be huge. For people like me, who’s into fashion, but not THAT into fashion – it’s a very fun eye-opener, and get this – fashiolista became a “go-to” place in my online browsing habits relatively fast. Now if you can catch my attention like that, I think you have a real shot at growing your site. Anyway because I was awestruck with my returns to the site, I decided to interview the guys behind fashiolista. Also because I have an idea that services like this is going to change the online shopping experience so it becomes more social, and products starts to find us, instead of us continuously browsing for something “cool”. anyway, enough babbling -  here goes :

1. where did the idea of fashiolista come from ?

The idea actually came to us after a brainstorm with students from the Amsterdam Fashion Institute. Our goal, from the start, was to help girls shop online and get inspired about fashion.
We had been trying different things before. Most of them involved combining the items from different shops, which resulted in a massive collection of for instance dresses or shoes. We actually found that this approach didn’t make shopping much easier, maybe even harder 😉

When we came up with the idea for Fashiolista, every girl we showed it to was instantly excited. So we knew we were on to something good.

2. how did you begin to execute the idea?

We started off with the design and user experience. One of our partners is a great designer. We than build the whole website as a prototype in a relatively short time. We had to work fast, because we wanted to launch at The Next Web conference in Amsterdam at the end of April.
– and what where the biggest challenges ?

By far the biggest challenge was keeping it simple. It always very easy to keep thinking of more features. Our designer, Thijs, was great in helping us keep the website clean and elegantly simple.

3. what have you done to get people to sign up and get the word/buzz spread around it?

We launched the product at The Next Web conference with a fabulous fashion show. That was really starting with a bang. We actually ‘flipped the switch’ right there while we were on stage. After that, we didn’t do much marketing. The concept just spread viral. In some strange way, it ended up in Brazil where we were featured on several blogs and by teen magazine Capricho. That gave a lot of exposure. Now we get many visitors from people talking about Fashiolista on Twitter, Facebook and Orkut.

4. what do people like about the site ?

They love the fact that they can save all their best fashion finds and share them with the rest of the world. Building your personal fashion feed is really addictive.. Users also like browsing the thousands of handpicked items on the website, discovering new items, stores and brands. It’s inspiring!

5. what is your favorite thing about having a startup ?

It’s really exciting to do. When you build a website from scratch and people actually love it and use it, that’s the greatest feeling in the world.

6. if you should give some good advice on making your own startup what would that be ?

Make sure you have great people to start your company with. Don’t give up, keep trying until you get it just right!

7. anything else you want to add  ?

Help us spread the love for fashion at Fashiolista.com!

8. where can people find you guys ?

Online at http://www.fashiolista.com, Twitter: @fashiolista
If you want to meet us in person, our door is always open… our offices are in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Lovers, haters, likers, ignorers and the social media value chain

I got back from Roskilde Festival sunday night. Monday was for catching up on stuff and today I feel like creative writing. It’s fantastic, because it’s one of the things I love the most, the total flow of needing to get things down on “paper” and shared away for inspiration.

These days I feel like im in some sort of vacuum waiting to burst out. It was the same when I released “return on involvement” in Danish last year. And with the english book “return on involvement” coming out + my new e-book (working title “social media value chain”, which I still need to find out if I can publish calling it a value chain without getting myself in trouble). Update: the e-book has ended up being called “rock your identity” and it consists of my social media value chain, described in details.

Another things that’s on my mind is the process of moving. We are (still) selling our gorgeous apartment and we’re moving back to my childhood home in Elsinore (about 50 km around from where we live now). Talking to the bank and facing the “when will your apartment be sold” question or “how many has been out to see it” makes me tired.

But – I turn to writing and researching for clients and myself. Now, one of the things that popped up in my curly head today, was a fun trick that I think will help you gather acknowledgement and fame (and make you into the rockstar that I KNOW you want to be).

One of the most important and interesting parts of my business is to figure out what people are saying about you. Both the lovers and the haters, the likers and ignorers (the people who ignore you for some apparent reason) and the rest who hasn’t had the chance to meet you yet. There’s a couple of things that always gets me going and makes me put myself on the spot all the time.

These things are the facts that:

– I believe that about 10% of all people in the world will be straight out negative about you. If you expect that, then the path to being your fullest self and daring to be different isn’t that hard. You will experience that some people thinks that what you’re most passionate about is the most stupid waste of time. Accept that these people are around and get going. Don’t focus on them. on the contrary I choose to believe a lot of people thinks that what I do kicks a**. I need to believe that – you do too.

– It takes quite a long time to get people to find out what you actually do – don’t worry they will come around if it’s for them.

– “They” will screw you over. it’s likely to happen so why not expect it?

– I will come out of every situation stronger.

– That you need to think about these things in a positive way, otherwise you wont publish your next piece of brilliant content, or the next – maybe it’s not exactly accurate, but it get’s your self-esteem up and makes you dare to be yourself. You’re on a special mission and nothing is going to stop you. You’re doing something that no one else has done before – because it has that magic touch of you on it.

But a way to direct this and to strategize around people, is to get aware of what it is that you want people to say about you. Put it down on paper.

So here’s the questions I asked myself (and my own answers below):
Why do you want the lovers to love your work ?

Because they think it rocks. Because it gives them value and that kind of “Henriette” insight and creativity that they didn’t know they where looking for. Because it’s made to inspire. Because it will make them more money and have their business running better… (and that’s also why I believe that Toothless Tiger (aka. my business) has been in business for 5 years, and is still going better than strong=)

Why should/would people hate you ?

If you think I’m an obnoxious woman, who likes to voice my opinion and whom you can’t stand. Don’t like me. Not even on facebook. Don’t retweet. Don’t sign up for my newsletter. It’s ok. Question my authority. Tell your friends to hate me too. I’m fine without you. No worries. You will be fine without me as well.

Why do they like what you’re doing ?

Because they are inspired by me and my work. They think I am a creative individual who gives them value.

Why do they choose to ignore you ?

One of the things I continuously say in my head is that they deliberately ignore me because they are afraid of me – sometimes I even say it’s because they are jealous. I need to believe that  it’s because I am better, faster, smarter, sexier and more insightful than them

What do you want the in-betweeners to say after the first time the read/hear/see you ?

That I gave them insights they haven’t thought about. That my ideas where genuine. That they would love to work with me at some point.

This is a giving exercise to do. It helps you position yourself. Now look at the answers to your questions and figure out: how will you make it happen ?

Coworkingboat Pan shareholder interview #2

Today I am not going to go easy on work and simply relax and do fun stuff together with my daughter. Though I have some Coworkingboat Pan shareholder interviews that is waiting to happen.

the Chief web Hackery gets cozy on Pan -  photo by Ton

Here’s the answers to the shareholder questions by Mark Wubben, a dear friend and one of the worlds coolest webhackers =)

1. name

Mark Wubben

2. city

Copenhagen

3. title in relation to the boat ?

Chief web hackery

4. why do you think this is a cool project ?

Rescuing an old boat from sinking on dry land is always a worthy cause, especially if it’s a family boat. I love how you’re sharing the process and the boat itself with a wider world.

5. good ideas for driving the coworkingboat project forward :

Set sail for the quiet of Øresund, combined with a 3G Wi-Fi router and the hopes of reception, to work a little and to relax a little, all with friends.

6. if you could choose something to make as an IRL startup – what would it
be ?

Not sure I understand the question…

7. why is reuse, reduse, recycle, retweet important to you ?

Getting new stuff is too easy. Appreciating what’s there, how to work with it, improve it, that’s actually valuable.

Then again, those iPads sure are shiny.

8.anything else ?

Keep the energy flowing, and how can we all help?

Creativity in a people-driven economy

Creativity is one of the things that I keep on repeating in my talks on business and how to grasp being a company in something that looks more and more like a people-driven economy. I personally think It’s dead-exciting but there’s so many uncertainties that makes people freak out and maybe not make great choices when it comes to creativity.

Rockbandism drives creativity

Even though I have told you a couple of times (in e-books, books, through videos and tweets), what really drives an online identity in a people-driven economy is the same things that adds up to what I call “rockbandism”. Authenticity, Trustworthyness and Remarkability (if you haven’t read my ebook on “why every company should be a rockband” you should download it now and find out what you need to work on in your company to rock your online identity). To me, these are the big magic three when you are talking online identity and creativity. But sometimes we tend to get so focused on the tools. Forget about the tools. To me they are not that important. They are great. but – not key to success on them (whatever you define it as)..

What really is key is creativity. A word that’s really diffuse and has so many different meanings depending on in which context you are talking about it. To me in a context of a people-driven economy it means that you need to do something different than other people are doing. Or other companies are doing.

I am actually writing this blogpost to revolt against the time and time again that I have sat at a table and talked about rockbands and great content and proactivity and all these wonderful things I have connected with dots inside my head that I truely believe my clients can become or rock. And how it sometimes seem like they aren’t ready for it. Sometimes I leave projects because the identity and what the company is bringing to the table is not a great vision, is not creative, but ends up as a competition, a bunch of celebrity endorsements or worst case scenario a textpage in addition to a facebook page – that you get to visit first. It represents the brand and tells you to sign up at the newsletter or visit a website. it’s the same old thing in a new social context and it doesn’t work. Not for me at least. It stops me from sleeping at night.

Is this the creative promise-land ? is this why I have kept teaching companies about the social web ? So that we can give people competition, celebs and textpages to reel them in as fish to our websites. NO. I have kept teaching it because i truely believe that getting creative and grasping the people driven economy will make you better as a company. It will make you happy. because you will learn how to relate to other people, and you will learn how to be authentic and cool.

Creativity to me is to turn things upside down and do stuff that matters to you. It’s business unusual . It’s involvement – and it’s dead important to me, and it’s a good idea to make it important to you as well.

Very proud to be a geekgirl

Yes – I am finally one of those cool ladies who has been to a Geek Girl Meetup. I even have an official sticker saying it.  I have been dying to be a part of that gang since I heard Heidi and Paula talk about it in Stockholm about a year ago. Saturday was my big first-time-at-a-geek-girl-meetup. For me it was a fantastic experience and I used it for inspiration for the danish geek girl meetup events that we have been planning and I even gave a speak about action on the social web (im up at 23 minuttes in the video).

I was so impressed by these ladies, first up the venue was mindblowing. The people who spoke where amazing. The food and the sponsors rocked! The team behind the meetup really did an fantastic job putting it all together – for all your hard work – thank you !

But most of all I cherished the conversation with the leading geek  ladies of the SkÃ¥ne region. So many things are being done over there, so many ideas and dreams, and so many successes!. I felt like staying there forever in this creative mindspace that we all participated in – awesomeness.

My favorite quote from the day is the one you see on the picture on top “passion is more contagious than expertise”. And it sums up the day so well for me. I think it’s brilliant that we can meet cross-industry/media/countries around a given subject that we are all passionate about : geek and share our point of views and how we look at the world.

What I took away from Geek Girl Meetup in Helsingborg was that we are shaping the world by these meetups, impressions and sharing our ideas. I still feel so inspired and have added a ton of stuff to my lists of things I need to do and research on to become better. Better at business but also let go of more stuff that I am dealing with, maybe do something completely different?I found out if I was supposed to do something else than being a creative web person I would become a veterinarian with 4 kids – it has always been a dream of mine. It’s not something I am considering (especially since I have this thing that I faint everytime i see (or sometimes even think of blood)

So thank you for letting me take part in your mind on a sunny saturday in Helsingborg. I am a fan =)

Oh and the creative mindspace of the event made me and Karin promise that we will set up a geek girl meetup in Copenhagen soon. stay tuned for more =)

Coworkingboat Pan Shareholder interview #1


I have a some people who has been extremely supportive of our “irl”startup- “Coworkingboat Pan”. Some people who thinks the idea is soo great that they have even supported the boat financially (a share is 500 kr if anyone is interested). One of these people is Peter Rukavina who I have known for quite a while now. He’s a brilliant thinker and a person who’s very laid back who I love to be around.  His work is nothing short of phenomenal – ( I even used some of his work as a case in my book “Return on Involvement”).  Last thing I heard was that Peter had purchased an old letterpress – which is an idea I love =)

Im so grateful for the support and the ideas that comes from these brilliant minds evolving the coworkingboat. Here’s some questions and answers from Peter, more shareholder interviews to come up here soon… =)

Peter see potential in Coworkingboat Pan – here he is together with Mark inside the boat – picture by TonZ

1. name

Peter Rukavina

2. city

Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada

3. title in relation to the boat ?

Chief Typographer and Ambassador to Canada

4. why do you think this is a cool project ?

I’ve loved the project from the word go: it is implausible, imaginative, involves a boat, has an international cast, and provides me with the potential for a floating bed when in Denmark. What’s not to love.

5. good ideas for driving the coworkingboat project forward :

Hold an Annual General Meeting. Install a webcam on the dock. Allow the boat to tweet the tides. Sail to Canada.

6. if you could choose something to make as an IRL startup – what would it be ?

A small storefront letterpress print shop / espresso bar / curiousity shop.

7. why is reuse, reduse, recycle, retweet important to you ?

It is not.

8.anything else ?

It takes tremendous energy and fullness of spirit to break free from the confines of the spinning wheel of the status quo, to keep a crazy idea in the air long enough that it can take on qualities of reality. The coworkingboat project, through Henriette, has achieved orbital status, and that’s an amazing achievement.

ps. if you want to be more continiously updated what’s happening around Coworking Boat Pan – we have a facebook page called “coworkingboatpan” that we update everytime we have done something new (or we need some answers/discussions etc)

I got the coworking boat Pan itch again

It’s been a while since I have updated you about the project. The boat will sail this summer and this blog is going to be filled with updates when the spring starts to come and we can get to work on the boat (and it’s not snowy and freezing here).. it’s a HUGE project, but it’s soo much fun and we are so motivated… I have forgotten to tell you that we found the mast and the sails for it are “looking” ok (im afraid they’ll rip apart when they are set). And a motor update: We have a sponsor for the whole of the motor into consideration (guys we need to get that rukwubben protocol working for the iphone app) so Pan can be flashy and glamourous and everything it’s not – yet =).

Also I want to thank you so much for your support in this HUGE irl startup/upcycling project – it means the world to me, and the project is so purposeful, I am looking so much forward to taking everyone of you out sailing this summer =) If you are interested in knowing more and helping out,  you can follow the project on this blog – otherwise there’s a  facebook page for Pan and we are also in the process of setting up a webpage for it (oh and if you want to help out with any of it, please let me know =).

finnfactstour: illtags.com

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So illtags.com was also a web app that sprang to my eye as a part of the finnfacts tour. Most certainly because it’s an app that uses collective knowledge to fight deceases.

It basically gathers data about how you and your friends are feeling – a very good example of this is the current global situation with the swineflu.

If you are ill you can list your tags on either facebook or on illtags.com if you want to give anonymous tags about your wellbeing.

Another nifty feature is that you can receive notifications if any of the places you have listed that you are visiting the most, has an increased level of different illness symptoms. I love when the collective datastream that we put out there is used to increase awareness of the things surrounding us – and illtags.com is one of those services… Two thumbs up from here=)