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Last Call for the Blogger’s Choice

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Author: the Inkslinger

Though it might seem to be the Contest That Never Ends (we did, after all, first post about this back in early May), voting in the Blogger’s Choice Awards is at last coming to a close.

Winners are to be announced November 10th. We’ve been nominated for Best Corporate Blog, and after all these many months we’re holding our own in fourth place, which is great but not quite enough to crack the Top Three where all the action is.

So, to indulge in a small amount of shameless self-promotion, if you’ve got a spare moment or two and want to help your favorite blog to a seat a limelight head over here and cast your vote for inspiration. It’s a stress-free process. Just click the little gold “vote” button under our current “total votes” tally. A quick registration and an e-mail later and you’re a voter. Don’t know if we can beat giants like Southwest Airlines and Google, who probably gave their respective staffs of thousands the day off to vote repeatedly, but it’s worth a try.

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Where Do We i-Go From e-Here?

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Author: the Inkslinger

That was the central question posed at our internet charette, which was held Wednesday and Thursday of this week.

What is an charette exactly? I really had no idea, but it turns out it’s a creative space in which a big giant brain dump/intellectual distillation can take place. You invite a lot of different people with different experiences and perspectives and ask them to spend some time ruminating on a certain subject, in this case what our internet presence should do and be. Everything from the big vision stuff to the nuts and bolts. No rules except that you should leave all preconceived notions at the door and feel free to break whenever you need one.

There was an intense amount of cranial power gathered in the room. Had we been able to physically tap it, the collective mind could have powered Burlington’s electric grid, I’m sure.

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Use Your Vote to Enhance Our Self-Esteem

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Author: the Inkslinger

In case you missed this hot in-house news item… If you’ll look to the immediate left here, in the Captivating Column of Divinely Inspirational Thingamabobs (apologies for the technical jargon), you’ll see up top there that (cue thunderous applause and raucous cheering)...

That's right. The Inspired Protagonist has been nominated for the Blogger’s Choice Award for Best Corporate Blog. Now I know it’s a honor just to be nominated. But if nominations are an honor, what's it like to win? Let’s find out, shall we?

To do that, you guys are going to have to vote because that’s the way this one works: whosoever gets the most votes from their adoring public wins. There are no judges. No juries. Just a ballot box stuffed as full as we can all conceivably get it. So when you’ve got a second or two, head over to the Blogger’s Choice Awards and cast your vote for inspirational protagonism. It’s pretty simple. Just click the little gold “vote” button under our current “total votes” tally. A quick registration and an e-mail later, and you’re in. A couple of clicks after that, and you’re there. Enough clicks and we win. It’s simplicity itself.

Right now we’re #4 with a bullet and just three votes from the number #3 position. Currently, it looks like Google and Southwest Airlines are rallying the troops to maintain the number one and two spots, but they’re not nearly as inspired as we are. Let’s show ‘em how it’s done.

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Media Mentions: 7th in the Financial Times

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Author: the Inkslinger

As promised last week, here’s that free link to the recent Financial Times article about Seventh. It’s a nice piece that's well worth a few minutes whenever you got them to spare. Just make sure you've got all your voting out of the way first...

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Radio-Free Jeffrey: Best Boss of the Year On the Air

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Author: the Inkslinger

Congratulations to Jeffrey! He’s been named one of the Best Bosses of 2006 by Winning Workplaces, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping companies create great work environments. Though it’s no surprise to anyone lucky enough to work with him, it’s nice to see the recognition spread beyond our office walls. To celebrate Bosses Day this past Monday and discuss the award, Jeffrey was a guest on the Dave & Bob Show on the Grape Vine Talk Radio Network.

Click our player and you can listen in…


powered by ODEO

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Relentless Caring

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This past Saturday I spoke at the Green Festival in Washington, DC. What I spoke about represented a significant departure from my usual focus on the business case for corporate responsibility or the growth of the natural products industry.

Here are some notes from my talk:

Love, I believe, is about relentlessly caring
That means not just caring when it’s comfortable or easy. Or when you feel like caring. But caring all the time. Especially when you don’t feel like caring. It means that you never stop.

Because the caring is not for you or even necessarily for another. But because it is the only way to be in the world. To love the whole of the world rather that the parts and pieces you choose.

To care relentlessly we must also see what lies within. The unexpressed potential. The wisdom in the most simple things. The essence rather than the outward manifestation. And to care relentlessly you need to be able to generate new patterns in your being because to care relentlessly is not what we are taught to do. Especially at work.

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A Friday We'll Never Forget

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We knew last Friday was coming, but even so it was still hard to believe it was actually happening when it finally got here. And what a day it turned out to be. Certainly it was the most exciting few hours we’ve had yet in our (relatively) new offices.

There was Robert Kennedy, Jr. standing in the Seventh Generation lunchroom amidst a gaggle of Vermont politicos, Seventh Generation staff members, media people and more to support Peter Welch, who is running for the House seat Bernie Sanders will vacate as he moves to fill Jim Jeffords’
open seat in the Senate.

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Seeding an Expo Forest for the Trees

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Author: the Inkslinger

So a bunch of folks here took off yesterday for the Natural Products Expo East in Baltimore. It’s a humongous trade show where people who make natural products show said products to the retailers and others who buy them. Think of it as a big giant schmooze-fest in a room roughly size of the Astrodome that’s filled with display booth after display booth of each manufacturer’s goodies.

Except for our booth. This year we decided to forgo the usual hey-look-at-our-stuff-isn’t-it-great route because there’s just too much at stake in the world these days. Instead we're building a forest. And here's our first tree:

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The Latest Presence in Our Office

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It was my great pleasure last week to welcome Otto Scharmer to our office. Otto co-authored the book Presence with Peter Senge and he brought his students from MIT to our office to explore Seventh Generation and to ask questions about any and all aspects of the company.

They were a great group and a handful of people from various departments spent five hours with them talking about what seemed like everything under the sun in a conversation that was as profound as it was probing. As worthwhile as the time was for Otto and his students, it was a tremendous experience for us as well, and I wanted to share Otto’s e-mail to me about the day

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A Company of Owners

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Last week the entire Seventh Generation staff headed to Trapp Family Lodge
in a Stowe, Vermont, for our annual two day retreat. (The Trapp family is the same one of Sound of Music fame.) The Lodge is a frequent destination for Seventh Gen meetings. It sits high upon a wonderful hill, giving you the impression that the world is at your door. Hundreds of acres of forest provide trails for hiking, snow shoeing or cross country skiing that wind through some of Stowe’s most amazing wilderness.

The theme of our retreat was a question: What does it mean to be an owner of our company?

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