Posts Tagged ‘smartstart giving’

Say It Isn’t So, Justin!

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008


I was disappointed to hear it had been reported by Forbes magazine that The Justin Timberlake Foundation had spent $146,000 on expenses in 2006 but only donated $32,500.

Obviously I am not an “insider” at Forbes (or anywhere else for that matter) but I do see them as a credible source of information.

This is a common problem for fund-raising organizations because the people who give intend for their donations to go to the cause or work they choose to support, not to foundation overheads and other dubious black holes of spending. When they find out this is not happening, they think twice about donating again.

Let us state again you can rest assured the generous micro-donations you make to SMARTSTART Giving are indeed being directed to As we have previously disclosed, only the small amount deducted by your credit company (something we do not control) is taken from the $10, $25 or $40 that you donate. Your money is then pooled with that received from other donors for the current month and is given to Kiva on the first Friday of the following month.

Certainly there are expenses involved in operating SMARTSTART Giving. Alex and I cover those expenses (which are not insignificant) personally as part of our ongoing monthly commitment thus ensuring the money you want to be used to support other entrepreneurs in the developing countries of the world is, in fact, doing just that.

To see the people whose lives you are changing by supporting our work, just click on Loans (in the navigation bar) and check out their faces and stories. Together we are doing some really great things. Thank you for helping us by supporting our vision for SMARTSTART Giving.

Meet Winner Leanne Abraham

Sunday, December 14th, 2008

Leanne AbrahamJoin me in welcoming Leanne Abraham, another Canadian winner to the SMARTSTART Business Success Program. Leanne is located out in British Columbia but is soon to be living in Cairo, Egypt making her my longest distance student in the program.

Thankfully the internet allows us to connect with those in far away places and I assure you Leanne has some great ideas for how to make the best use of her upcoming year in the program (stay tuned for updates).

Have a quick listen to Leanne; you’ll see what I mean.

Meet Winner Tony Roebuck

Saturday, December 13th, 2008

Tony RoebuckI was very intrigued about meeting this winner when I visited his web site at and when we had our first chat on the telephone I found myself feeling very peaceful indeed.

Winner Reverend Tony Roebuck is both a pastor and a coach who specializes in mindful counselling and hypnotherapy. His mission? To help others embrace wholeness through mind, body, spirit and energy healing. He’s looking forward to working on this in the SMARTSTART Business Success Program. We can all use some of that, don’t you agree?

Meet Winner Dr. Cynthia Barnett

Friday, December 12th, 2008

True to his word, Alex continued his giveaways into November and all the winners who will work with me in 2009 through the SMARTSTART Business Success Program have now been selected.

Dr. Cynthia BarnettDr. Cynthia Barnett‘s story is a particularly happy one. She was so hoping to win but her name did not come up in round number one or round number two. But she did not give up! I recognized her name when it was pulled in selection round number three and it was one of the happiest congratulatory calls I got to make throughout this process.

Dr. Cynthia is a real go-getter. She has just jumped in with both feet and is now working on building her awesome brand Dr. Cynthia’s Freestyle Retreats. You can check out her web site at or click on the play button to hear her winner’s interview.

4 Things You Can’t Recover

Friday, November 28th, 2008

Owl in TreeIn this special time of year when we turn our attention to friends and family, perhaps having had to sacrifice some of that along the way, I thought I’d share a reminder of the 4 things we can’t recover:

the stone… after the throw,
the word… after it’s said,
the occasion… after the loss,
the time… after it’s gone.

(A friend sent this message to me today and I liked it so much I decided to pass it on!)

Our 3 Final Winners Have Been Selected!

Friday, November 28th, 2008

Wow, last night’s draw was so exciting! Our special thanks to Leland Clipperton who drew the names of the final 3 winners in the Alex Mandossian Giveaway! (I’ll be calling them personally right after the Final Friday call which starts in 30 minutes!)

Congratulations to:

Glenn Weissel, Roy, Washington
Leanne Abraham, North Vancouver, British Columbia
Ken Lucyk, Spruce Grove, Alberta

Success Starts with Heart

Monday, November 24th, 2008

Being an entrepreneur can be tough. But there’s no life like it! Frankly, I can’t imagine living any other way and I’m sure Alex feels the same as I do. And I know many of you feel that way too.

Let me be clear, it’s not like we’ve never felt frustrated about where we were in our lives at some point. Or that we didn’t have doubts and fears. Everybody goes through that. The entrepreneurial life carries with it a lot of uncertainty in terms of outcome. Even so, the ability to choose your own path and to work toward something with a willingness to let the chips fall where they may is the ultimate freedom.

No matter where you are on your entrepreneurial journey, there’s always plenty to be thankful for. And if you find yourself at a place where you need to re-energize and re-motivate yourself, I have a recommendation for you. A fellow Canadian, Wayne Kelly (aka the Radio Guy), recorded a series of 52 motivational interviews not long ago. Alex is even one of the success inspirations in the collection!

Wayne’s work is one of his own giving projects (he’s using this series to raise $1M for Alzheimer’s Society of British Columbia). I thought I’d let you know about it because these 6-12 minute interviews (also available as downloadable mp3s) are very uplifting. How often can you give yourself a lift while helping others?

On Wayne’s web site you can listen to some sample interviews and, if you like what you hear, you can get the entire collection, delivered to you by email once a week. Many of the interviews are with people you may know or have heard of; some people you’ll be meeting for the first time. Either way, it’s a whole year of support ready whenever you need a lift!

See for yourself at

You Can’t Go Wrong When You Stay Your Course

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

Q: What do GE, Disney, HP and Microsoft have in common?

A: They were all startups during steep declines in the U.S. economy. GE started during the panic of 1873, Disney started during the recession of 1923-24, HP began during the Great Depression, and Bill Gates and Paul Allen founded Microsoft during the recession of 1975.

Q: How much revenue did Microsoft earn in its first year of business?

A: $16,005

Moral of this post?

Great things can be created in times of economic difficulty and even the biggest companies start small. So, rock on people — we’re just getting started! Give the gift of believing in yourself and your dreams.

3 More Winners Announced November 8

Saturday, November 8th, 2008

Alex MandossianIf you’ve been following the Alex Mandossian Giveaway you know that it will soon be coming to an end.

On Friday, November 7 we did another call explaining the SMARTSTART Business Success Program and what Alex and I are both giving between now and the end of 2009 to help you, our fellow entrepreneurs closer to home, achieve your business dreams.

If you were on that call, or have listened to it since, you would also know I promised to announce the names of our next 3 winners here today at noon.

We asked Ms. Samantha Jones (not the one from Sex and the City but just as cute) to draw the names for us this morning. Today’s winners are (drum roll please):

Jeannie Fitzsimmons, Beverly Hills, California
Lorraine Beasley, Greenwood, Indiana
Cynthia Barnett, Norwalk, Connecticut

Congratulations, ladies! We’re glad to have you on our winners team. I just called you to welcome you to the program and our team personally. You’ll receive further information by email over the next few days and I look forward to working with you.

Our winners receive private coaching and management consulting until December 2009 to help them build their businesses or move a business idea forward. Their fees for all SMARTSTART Mentoring Programs are waived for life (or as long as they stay in the program since you can leave at any time — there’s no fixed commitment).

Now, don’t despair if your name has not been drawn yet. It’s not too late to get in on the next and final draw!

The final 3 winners will be announced live at the end of our SMARTSTART Giving Final Friday call on November 28th. To qualify for the draw, you must first purchase a seat in the SMARTSTART Business Success Program.

You can do that here:

Just scroll down to the bottom of the page and you’ll see that Alex himself is paying more for you to be in the program than you are paying to be in it (if you decide to join that is).

A year from now, you can still be talking about your business, or you could actually have one working for you. The decision to take action on your own behalf is all yours. We’re doing all we can personally to help you but you have to step up too. I encourage you to take advantage of Alex’s offer and let this be a gift you give to yourself.

SMARTSTART Giving 2.7 Million Dollar Giveaway Expands!

Friday, November 7th, 2008

Well it started as a $2.7M Giveaway but we have since expanded our list of winners and, instead of having just 9 people in the SMARTSTART Business Success Program receiving a year’s worth of management consulting and coaching, we’ve doubled the number of winners to 18 lucky entrepreneurs!

Listen to Alex explain why he’s doing this and more!

For example, he’s willing to pay more per month than you will just so you can be in this program. That’s how much he wants you to have this opportunity to succeed in creating your business dreams.

(A seat in the SMARTSTART Business mentoring program costs $99. You pay $49 and Alex will pay the other $50 for you. How many teachers do you have that would be willing to do that just to help you succeed hmmmmm?)