AlexTas

DoGooder @ Benieth
Working (15+ years of experience)
16Joined Sep 2022

Bio

Alex is a globally experienced brand strategy, communications and market research expert. He first went ‘remote’ in 2015 moving to the southeastern tip of Tasmania to raise his only daughter. Unaware of the EA movement until somewhat recently, he’s been donating his expertise to good people doing good things since 2003. Today Alex provides white label analysis, strategy and creative services to a number of private clients and to good people doing good things in community-based organisations.

How others can help me

I love to help good people do good things. If you’ve got a project that needs someone with a lot of practical experience in brands, comms, strategy and market research, please get in touch. If it’s a paid gig that's great. If not, please get in touch anyway, I love helping people answer good questions. 

How I can help others

If you need insights I might have a report, insight, workshop or model that can help. If it's anything related to strategy, brands, creative industries, comms, pr, content or other forms of connecting people with ideas, I’m very happy to answer questions or contribute in any way I can. 

Comments
6

AlexTas5mo20

Great post Michel. Thank you for sharing it. I look forward to your next one. 

One other area I think might be interesting to explore in reputational risk is one that plagues the for profit and NFP worlds - apathy - or the “so-what” factor. It’s an issue / risk I’ve seen time and again that seems to always reflect on a brand or product's perceived relevance or a lack thereof - which in turn speaks to the product or brand's perceived lack of value or utility. 

In my experience it’s usually caused by organisational rigidity, it's lack of genuine interest in, or understanding of, the ‘consumer’, a stagnant monoculture - like  your point on “insufficient diversity”, or an inability to accesses the creative thinking needed for innovation or product adaptation.

Sorry, I know this is a ‘movement’, but I can’t help but think of it in product terms.

AlexTas6mo10

Hi Vaidehi. Thanks so much for responding! I assumed there was a team behind this Forum but I didn’t know (or wasn’t clear) that I could share draft thoughts with them. How is this done? Do I just send PMs to specific people like you?

AlexTas6mo50

How funny. I find myself intimidated just writing this comment. That said, this is an excellent post that quite accurately conveys the internal struggles and challenges of a newbie poster like me. 

Though I’ve years and years of experience with brands, comms and strategy and have written, presented and engaged with boards, CEOs and rooms full of incredibly bright people, I’ve found that posting my thoughts on the EA forum is weirdly terrifying. 

I’ve been trying to understand why for a few weeks now. As a member of a few other communities, in which I feel very comfortable, I thought it might be helpful to detail my insecurities here:

  • As a newcomer I get the sense that I accidentally wandered into a super cool group of super clever people discussing super clever things and that I wasn’t supposed to get the invite. Of course being me, I then went on to misread the invite and showed up in a clown costume honking a horn
  • I like to write. But I write in a more personal and expressive style (much like this comment) and, like others, I find the writing style here is very complex, formal and intimidating. It’s not like my style, so I think maybe I shouldn’t post 
  • Voluntarily offering my thoughts and ideas to be judged by very smart people isn’t my favorite thing to do so I’ve found I get stuck writing and editing in circles in order to sound clever instead of clear 
  • My expertise is in the highly subjective areas of strategies, brands, messages, creative thinking and customer experiences which feels massively superficial compared to the big stuff people talk about in here
  • I suspect like many others, I’ve got an oversized fear of trolls, or of tripping on the outrage tripwire. I’m not saying trolls are here, just that outrage seems to be everywhere these days and a lot of us have learned to be hyper-cautious 
  • I came into the EA shop looking for clever, rational people and communities with interests in social, communal, behavioral, public policy, creative design and systems based EA and found AI, BioRisk and Animal Welfare communities - which are all great, but again, I think I  misread the invite
  • In my other groups I tend to respond really well to questions. I’ve got lots of thoughts and ideas of my own, but to answer a question feels a lot more helpful 
  • Though I really, really, love quant, my comfort zone is qualitative, so I’m more comfortable in posting simple questions that spark discussions (ie “Anyone read that Salon article?”) rather than proposing ideas and theories for robust testing and interrogation 

To be fair, this is a really awesome forum that I might have found purely by mistake. I’m still not sure if I should be here, but I have been made to feel welcome, valued, and encouraged. I’ve got loads to say on the EA brand and its communications challenges and opportunities, but every draft post I’ve written (four so far) I’ve talked myself out of. I’ve no doubt my insecurities have gotten the better of me but, in my line of work, first impressions really do matter and I can’t seem to get past the fact that my first impression here matters more than in any other forum. 

(Gulp!)

AlexTas6mo10

Great post! I look forward to trying it. Is it safe to assume the same method applies to investigating and writing about the present and future?

AlexTas6mo100

Thank you for this post. 

As a newbie to the EA concept and community, but as someone who has practiced a pick-up game of ‘greatest good’ since 2004, I have to agree. The current EA entry points for newcomers do feel very narrow. I don’t come from an AI background or a particularly academic or financially endowed one. I’m one of those ‘graphic designer, writer, mental health…’ types you mention.

I joined the EA to find smart people who could help me think about my local, practical, and socially based ‘greatest good’ questions and issues. Now that I understand a little bit more about the macro longtermisim aspects of EA, I’m pretty sure my side game isn’t a good use of the community’s time or talent.

AlexTas7mo30

Hi all, I'm a newbie. Happy to be here.