Clarity First Newsletter, January 13, 2017


This week President Barack Obama made his farewell address to a packed house in Chicago. During a time when many are feeling a foreboding sense of uncertainty, his closing statement bears repeating: “I am asking you to hold fast to that faith written into our founding documents; that idea whispered by slaves and abolitionists; that spirit sung by immigrants and homesteaders and those who marched for justice; that creed reaffirmed by those who planted flags from foreign battlefields to the surface of the moon; a creed at the core of every American whose story is not yet written: Yes, we can.” Thank you. I needed that.

You are how you help.

Rather than looking to get ahead, look for opportunities to help and serve.
Article: Your Brand Is Your Promise of How You Help.

Smile at strangers.

A brilliant and doable list of reminders from
List: 8 Simple Things You Can Do To Become Much More Confident.

This year, our challenge is to be honest enough and brave enough to change the world.

This year is not normal. This year, it’s not “lose five pounds (again)” or “finally get the junk drawer organized”.
Article: Why Your Voice Matters More than Ever This Year.

Imagine if more people viewed the MLK holiday as a “day on” rather than a “day off”.

Article: Sharing the MLK, Jr. Holiday in a Culturally Competent Way.

Communications methods that support design processes

A comprehensive and easy-to-understand catalog of tools used in design processes. From Posters to Personas there are tools for co-designing, envisioning, testing and prototyping, and implementing.
Article: Communications Tools That Support Better Design

Let’s think together.

“IBM Design Thinking is our approach to applying design thinking at the speed and scale the modern enterprise demands. It’s a framework for teaming and action. It helps our teams not only form intent, but deliver outcomes that advance the state of the art and improve the lives of the people they serve.” Excerpt from the:
eBook: IBM Design Thinking Field Guide

Attract more users. Improve your conversion rates.

In web design minimalism reigns and microinteractions will change the way.
Article: Top 8 Web Design Trends Your Startup Needs to Stand Out in 2017.

Communicating Impact, a special DIY Brand Camp for non-profits

A reminder that I will be offering a special edition of the DIY Brand Camp on Wednesday, February 15 at the Smith College Conference Center. Registration is open and early-bird pricing is available now.
Workshop: Communicating Impact with Brand Clarity


Wikipedia calls Gill Scott-Heron a soul and jazz poet. He called himself a “bluesologist”. No matter how you classify it, his spoken-word style is a cornerstone in the house of hip-hop, and his socially and politically focused lyrics are as relevant today as they were the day he wrote them. Ace Records has a 51 song compilation called The Revolution Begins: The Flying Dutchman Masters. Here’s a cut from that album: Pieces of a Man.

Image of the week

The images in the headers are by LaToya Ruby Frazier. They’re from her book, The Notion of Family, an exploration of the legacy of racism and economic decline in America’s small towns, as embodied by her hometown of Braddock, Pennsylvania. (Thanks to Juxtapoz Magazine.)

What’s Clarity First?

If you’re new to Clarity First, it’s the weekly newsletter by Clarity, the consultancy that helps mission-driven companies use their brand – their purpose, values, and stories – as powerful tools for transformation. Learn more.

If you get value from Clarity First, please pass it on.

Leave a Comment