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The Brand of Carpe Factum

KnotI'm very fortunate to know, not one, but three amazing brand consultants all living right here in Des Moines.  I've talked about Mike Wagner and Drew McLellan plenty of times, and have shared how much they have done for me and my career.  Last week, I had the opportunity to have lunch with Mark True of REL.  Little did I know that the lunch was going to begin with a pop quiz.

"Tim," he began.  "I thought I knew what you did with this project management stuff.  But you focus on accomplishment and a whole lot of other issues.  What is your brand story?  How do you tie all these things together?"

It's pretty simple.  Carpe Factum is about accomplishment - always has been, always will be.  But there are three elements of focus here:

  • Systems Thinking - How do you design your accomplishments?
  • Project Management - How do you achieve your accomplishments?
  • Office Politics - How do you remove obstacles blocking your accomplishments?

All three are interdependent.  All three are interrelated.  All three help you seize the accomplishment.  I think Mark gave me an 'A' on the pop quiz because my answer seemed to appease him (and when it comes to branding, he's not an easy man to appease; he asks really tough questions and expects good answers).

What about you?  Do you know how all of your products and services tie together to support your brand story?  How would you do with Mark's pop quiz?


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Mark True


I think you definately earned an A with your answer. You do a great job of explaining your focus on accomplishment and hnow the "things" you do support that brand position. Great job.

And you were much better than I at accomplishing the task of getting to Flannigan's while evading law enforcement, too! ;)


Drew McLellan


With Mark -- you're always going to be put on the hot seat. The man's brand is that he loves and believes in branding. No wonder I like him so much! And I concur with his assessment -- nice job of creating that porch pitch.


Timothy Johnson

Mark - thanks for constantly challenging my thinking. It was a great conversation. (Brushes with law enforcement notwithstanding - but that's a blog post for another day.)

Drew - if I've learned anything over the past three years, it's how difficult your job is. Marketing and branding are NOT activities that any schmoe off the street can do. I appreciate having people like you in my life to keep me focused.

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