A Column About Leadership, by Peter Davis
My goal with the leadership column is to create a bridge between the up & coming cultural creatives and entrepreneurs driving the Baltimore Renaissance and established leaders who have made an impact in the world. We have much to learn from each other.
This week we’re talking to Paul Wolman, CEO at Feats Inc., Board Chair of the Greater Baltimore Committee’s LEADERship Program, and Adjunct Faculty at Maryland Institute College of Art.
Peter: What inspires you?
Paul: People who are actually changing the game, developing new ideas and models, rethinking what’s possible, and raising the bar.
Peter: What makes Feats and higher education a good fit?
Paul: Having a group (FeatsEDU) that’s fully focused on higher education gives our clients a depth of talent who share the same purpose. Our most successful work helps deliver important messages to individuals who will do something more meaningful or significant as a result.
What’s exciting is that shared experiences – the core of what we conceive and deliver – are most effective when there are important stories to tell. Colleges, universities, and, really, any organization in the business of delivering education and other human services, are typically doing transformational work – finding better ways to deliver learning, discovering cures for disease, developing our communities, etc …
Our particular expertise comes from understanding what creates impact
and what moves people to action. Designing and producing appropriate, immersive environments, programs and engaging experiences, with hat emotional or intellectual connection in mind, can result in triggering a response.
And when we do this through a continuum of experiences, we increase the likelihood of larger action. Examples include moving one from giving a wonderful contribution to making a legacy gift, or instigating one to inspire another, creating the beginning of a movement.
Peter: When asked what he was trying to do, Steve Jobs replied: “Tweak the Universe.” What are you trying to do?
Paul: Accelerate change and increase impact, one experience at a time . By helping people experience the joy that comes from seeing and, more importantly, feeling the impact of their own actions… we can mo ve the flywheel of action.
Peter: Why does that matter?
Paul: If we don’t, who will?
Peter: Besides making a profit, how does a business demonstrate what it cares>about?
We say, “Feats Speak Louder Than Words”… It’s about how we as individuals, and collectively, show up, how we engage, how we help others see opportunity they didn’t see, move others to action. One of our favorite sayings is, “Think Big, Act Locally, and Instigate Others.”
If we can help others bring together their core values with the larger impact they want to have on the world, we can help them find ways to live that – not just create a promotion or marketing scheme that sounds good.
Perhaps it comes back to helping people feel the positive results of their own actions – there is such power in that.