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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Transferring the architecture behind our core talent

We’re all given one thing in life that’s a little easier for us than it is for most people. 

Call it our divine gift, our zone of genius, our unique talent, what have you. All names aside, its purpose is to whisper to us, specifically in those moments when our sense of competency is assaulted:

Hey, why not do everything like you do that thing? 

This question is perhaps the most powerful tool to help us breathe from the atmosphere of possibility. To stop overlooking our capacity to transfer the architecture underneath our core talent to all the other areas of our lives. 

Years ago, I realized that writing was that thing for me. It was my first love. My first language. The support system for my life. The tool I used to weave my picture of the world and speak to myself about what I need. The only thing I couldn’t remember not doing. 

And so, now, whenever I feel clogged or incapable or in over my head with certain activities or tasks, I think to myself, okay:

How could I make writing a part of this? What are the architecture elements underneath the writing process that might also work here? 

Sure enough, I began embedding that thing into whatever other thing I was doing, and everything was fine. I felt like the best version of myself. All because I transferred the architecture. 

Look, it’s a game. A curiosity experiment. An awareness plan that challenges you to see which part of myself, unrelated as may be, that I can integrate into this moment to solve problems and create value and make things happen. 

Next time you find yourself stuck and blocked and trapped, practice a little transference. Think about the one talent or skill that you can execute brilliantly but intuitively. Consider the core principles that have silently guided that behavior for years. Figure out how to generecize them in an exact and practical way. 

And then replicate them to the task at hand. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you overlooking the transferability of your own talent? 
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Nothing more than a coping mechanism in disguise

Few things are more frustrating than feeling mysteriously drained. 

Experiencing that sudden surge of disinterest towards a project or an endeavor that deflates your energy, derails your momentum and disheartens your spirit without fair warning. Blech. 

The good news is, there are questions you can ask yourself to uncover the purpose of your depletion. Because whatever you’ve stopped working on might be a hopeless endeavor, on the other hand, it might be the moment right before success. It all depends on how deep you’re willing to dig. 

Here’s one question that helps me understand myself a little bit more during such situations: 

Does this project serve a real purpose, or is it just a response to anxiety? 

More often than not, it’s the latter. Especially when money is tight, inspiration is low and pressure is high. 

My racing brain, out of ego preservation, triggers an unproductive obsession that’s nothing more than a coping mechanism in disguise. An anxiety response to my fear of failure. 

And that’s okay. I try not to judge myself for chasing false refuge. I try to have compassionate, being softly and kindly present with my open wounds. After all, false refuge provides an immediate sense of comfort and security. Who could resist? 

And so, I put a supportive arm around my shoulder instead of hitting myself over the head. I use creativity enhancing tools like project junkie, which is a brainstorming framework you can use when intuition and inspiration take the day off. 

And then I get back to work making meaning in the world. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
How do you respond when you experience a sudden surge of disinterest? 

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Your energy scatters and shatters

Running around the forest putting a few chops in each tree doesn’t work. 

It’s too labor intensive for not enough reward. It’s too confusing to keep track of all our progress. It’s too enabling to our fear of failure. It’s too difficult to feel a deep sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. 


And it’s too infuriating when we circle back to tree number one and discover that new plant life has grown back where our original chop used to be. 


But because we’re impatient, uncommitted, flighty, frenzied and fractured, that’s what we do. We try to clear the forest through a thousand scattered chops. And we end up giving up before a single tree falls to the ground. 


The good news is, there is more than one way to clear a forest. One option is to build an axe big enough to cut all the trees down in one fell swoop. 


That’s called a clearinghouseA central lever that allows us to integrate and converge everything into one cohesive whole. 


Another option is to find the biggest tree in the land, the mother ship that gives life to all the minions, cut it down, and hope that all the other trees fall down with it. 


That’s called a catchall. It’s the single stone that kills all the birds. 


Of course, you could always contract a deforestation team. Which is wildly effective, but it’s also expensive and leads to catastrophic flooding and global warming and obliterates the wildlife and angers the environmentalists. 


The final option is something I learned from the most popular video game in the history of the internet. 


Minecraft players, I discovered, never use their diamond pickaxe to clear the forest. Even if it’s the sharpest tool in the box. Instead, they use their fire to blaze up a few trees, and then stand back as the fire spreads from tree to tree to tree, thus demolishing the entire forest in minutes, without their direct involvement. 


Not bad for a bunch of teenage gamers. 


The point is, the way we’re working isn’t working. If we want to make our dreams a reality, we have to be smarter about our tools and shrewder about our toil. 


Otherwise we’ll be too scattered and shattered to make those trees come down. 


LET ME ASK YA THIS... 

Are you trying to clear your forest in the most efficient way? 
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

No labels, no limits

I’ve been wearing a nametag twenty four seven for the past seventeen years. 

And yet, it’s becoming abundantly clear to me that labels are fables. That obsessing over naming and categorizing and titling and languaging the work that we do can be a misappropriation of mental resources. 

It’s one thing to achieve clarity of message and give the marketplace a solid handle by which to carry your product. That’s basic marketing strategy. 

But it’s another thing to disappear down the rabbit hole of your own hair splitting semantics, wasting precious energy worrying about how people talk about your work, instead of spending that energy actually delivering value for those people. 

I once expanded my coaching program to include annual access to my brain at a variety of levels. But during the development process, I hit a stalemate when labeling my new service offering. 

Coaching? Mentoring? Consulting? Strategizing? What should I call it? 

And then I realized, oh wait, nobody cares. 

The goal of great service is meeting people where they are, doing whatever it takes to help them get where they want to be and surrendering the compulsion to assign a name to everything along the way. 

And so, the name of the delivery mechanism is irrelevant compared to the client’s improved condition. Rango’s spirit guide said it best:

These days, they’ve got a name for just about everything. But it doesn't matter what they call you, it’s the deeds that make the man

The name of the product will get your foot in the door, but only the value of its work will keep you in the room. 

No labels, no limits. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you worrying about what people call your work, or worrying about delivering value in the process? 
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Friday, January 27, 2017

The less they pay, the more they pain

Here’s the problem with angling for small fish. 

They’re too hard to catch because they don’t appear on the image sensor. They’re rarely worth the trouble to clean and cook. They’re excessively boney and therefore frustrating to eat. And the only way to truly satisfy your hunger is to scarf down a few dozen of them. 

That’s not only smart fishing, that’s a complete lack of understanding of labor intensity and the economy of effort. Two principles we can’t afford to ignore. 

I’m reminded of a graphic designer colleague of mine who recently shifted her entire client based from nonprofits to medium sized businesses. After five years, she just couldn’t take it anymore. Clients always begged for discounts, never paid their bills on time and most of them had a severe addiction to scope creep. 

Eventually, she made the decision to throw the sardines back to the reef and swim out to the deep waters with the sharks. And now she has more business than she knows what to do with. With clients who are a seamless joy to work with. 

Still chasing the small fish? Still trapped in the middle market? Still bending over dollars to pick up dimes? Still wasting your passion on people who don’t appreciate or deserve it? Still placating your low pay but high pain clients because you’re accustomed to hiding from your power? 

You’re better than that. It’s time to start playing a bigger game. Because the less they pay, the more they pain. 

Brody was right. You’re gonna need a bigger boat. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Who might be throwing you back because you’re fishing too small?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Now that’s the kind of rejection I can get used to

I once interviewed for a job with a global information services corporation. 

The work itself seemed fascinating, but frankly, the workplace seemed frightening. It was cold and stale and gigantic. Trying to visualize myself being happy there was a severe stretch of the imagination. 

And so, I respectfully declined the offer. No hard feelings. Just the wrong fit. 

About a year later I bumped into the same hiring manager from that very interview. She had since transitioned into working for scrappy new tech startup, mainly because of its schedule flexibility and decision making freedom. 

But as we reminisced about our first encounter back at the gigantic company, she gave me a piece of candid feedback that I’ll never forget. 

I was honestly worried to hire you, as I thought you’d feel confined by the environment. You seemed too talented for that. 

Now that’s the kind of rejection I can get used to. Because it’s not about failure, it’s about fit. You’re not talented in a way that’s necessary to fit into our machine. But keep being yourself and keep looking and keep listening, and eventually you’ll find a place where your talents can flourish, and where you can express your unique gifts to make a difference in other people’s lives. 

Withers famously sang that if feels this good getting used, you just keep on using me until you use me up. 

Perhaps rejection should be viewed from that perspective. 

It’s not a no, it’s just a not here. 

Keep going. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
What if your biggest setback was a rejection of a lifetime?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Closed off from a universe of opportunities

The fastest way to go out of business is to be religious about how you make your money. 

And I mean that in a strategic sense, not a spiritual one. 

It has nothing to do with god and everything to do with growth. After all, the word religion literally means to link back. It’s the one thing in your life that everything else in your life links back to. 

And so, when growing your business, religion can be the death of you. Because it leads to the fatal temptation of defining your value, your market and your future too narrowly. Closing yourself off from a universe of opportunities. 

I have a pastor friend who said it best:

Certainty is boring. It’s against new information. It’s orthodoxy and fundamentalism and dogmatism, which operate on a pure state of perfection that existed sometime in the past, convincing us that if we could just get back there, everything would be fine

And believe it or not, that’s how a lot people approach their businesses. They move toward their safe, proven target like an arrow, completely ignoring all the beautiful air rushing by. Air that could become oxygen to fuel their growth in a new direction. 

I’m guilty of this sin myself. After fifteen years of entrepreneurship, the story I’ve been telling myself is that my talents only have one or two or three ways of being used by the marketplace. 

But clearly, that’s just the religious fundamentalist in me trying to mitigate risk and growth and change. Trying to trap my talent in a box for fear of what other gods might be around the corner. 

And if I could just stop being so damn religious about how I make my money, perhaps I could stumble upon a new path of working that I haven’t tried yet. 

One that frees me to create new kinds of value for new kinds of markets in new kinds of ways. 

One that give your little economic engine every possible advantage in the current postmodern landscape. 

And all the businesspeople shall answer and say, amen. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you willing to give up your models of the path as you travel it?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Careful what you fish for

When I fall into an emotional funk, I tend make this giant leap to global negativity. 

The story that I make up is, the world is blind to my talents, clients aren’t coming to warm their hands by my fire, and so, I’m just going spend the rest of my career winking in the dark.

It completely assaults my sense of confidence. And I know it’s an uncompassionate way to talk to myself. 

The good news is, once I finally claw my way back to stability a few weeks later, I realize a few things. 

The story I’m telling myself about my talent is completely invented. It’s not a rod and reel issue, I’m just fishing in the wrong hole. I’m stuck in the middle market. And because that hole has been so good to me for so long, I feel an obligation to be loyal. And so, I’ve seduced myself into an unwillingness to look for work opportunities outside of that perfectly manicured pond.

To modify the old adage, be careful what you fish for. 

The point is, if I truly want to find a vehicle worthy of my talents, something that can take my genius on the ride it deserves and create the most value for the most people for the most money, I have to diversify the way I fish. To investigate unexpected ponds to keeping my career thriving. To pursue new and exciting market opportunities outside of my traditional wheelhouse. 

And then, once I get there, help my market understand the story they should tell themselves about the work I’m doing for them.

That way they can tell my story to all of the other fish in the pond. 

Hook, line and sinker. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you constantly on the lookout for new opportunities to better express your talents and abilities?
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, January 23, 2017

When contemplation becomes a form of escapism

The life of the mind appears to be dazzling and voluptuous operation. 

Drifting of to exile inside yourself, becoming a castaway on a desert island of your dreams, being a prisoner in the fortress of your art, these things sound absolutely idyllic. 

Especially to the kind of person who feels most at home inside his own head. 

But the challenge with introspection is, if we spend too much time living the life of the mind, sitting in a corner perfecting ourselves, then contemplation becomes a form of escapism. 

We’re not making the world a better place, we’re just reflecting all day. Flighting from the world into a antisocial rabbit hole of false bliss. 

That’s what turns me off about most meditation retreats. The last thing I need to do is travel two hundred miles upstate to sit in a quiet room for ten hours a day and empty my mind. That sounds punishing. 

I’ve meditated for thousands of hours in the past fifteen years, and don’t regret a single minute. But at this point in my life, more stillness isn’t going to be my agent of transformation.

Moving is. Working is. Being useful to the world is. Connecting with the earth is. Getting the hell out of my own head and engaging with nature is. 

Maybe that’s what people who live the life of the mind need. A reverse meditation center. A place where you can’t help but get out of your own head. 

An experience where you’re abruptly escorted out of the ether and into the realm of the actual. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Is drifting off to exile inside yourself reaching a point of diminishing returns? 

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

I wonder what else might be bothering me?

If there’s one thing I know about myself, it’s that my problem is rarely my problem. 

It’s always a symptom, not a source. What matters more is the thing behind the thing. 

And so, when a substantial challenge surfaces, before I pull out the whip to start chastising myself, first I challenge myself to think about what else might be bothering me. Because there’s always something. 

I struggled with stomach problems for years. Symptoms included bloating, burning and chronic abdominal pain, to name a few. Of course, the story I was making up was that diet was the problem. 

And so, I immediately vowed to swear off carbs and soda and spicy foods and dairy and meat. Which helped me feel a little better, and even lose a few founds, but ultimately, my gastrointestinal issues persisted. For years. My doctors and therapists and mentors were baffled. 

Until one day, I had an epiphany. 

Wait a minute, I’m not lactose intolerant, I’m just a workaholic who’s trapped in a toxic codependent relationship with a manipulator. I wonder if that has something to do with the fact that I haven’t had a solid bowel movement in three years. 

Who knew? Not surprisingly, my problem was not my problem. It was the thing behind the thing. And the moment I confronted and took extreme ownership of that deeper issue, my stomach issues magically melted away. 

Like the very nacho cheese that I mistaken thought I was allergic to. God I love cheese. 

The point is, it’s scary to face what else might be bothering us. But unless we dig beneath the surface of our problems and find the root cause, we may never heal fully. 

Whatever symptoms you have, grant yourself the grace and space to feel them, but also give yourself the curiosity and wonderment to sneak behind the curtain and confront the source. 

Whyte said it best in his amazing book about corporate poetry:

It is not the thing you fear that you must deal with, it is the mother of the thing you fear. At three in the morning, when we are alone, our defenses are down and we cannot sleep, the huge green hand rises from below and drags us into something hitherto ignored, deeper and more urgent.

Remember, don’t assume there isn’t a vein of pain until you’ve rooted around a little bit. After all, your problem is not your problem. 

Uncover that which is outside of your immediate awareness and set yourself free. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Have you challenged yourself to think about what else might be bothering you?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!