Don’t know Seth Godin?  Curious about the Ruckusmakers?  Read on…

Seth Godin

Seth Godin

The question, “What is a Ruckusmaker seminar?” can only be addressed by first answering, “Who is Seth Godin?” A renown marketer, he was inducted into the Direct Marketing Hall of Fame in 2013, he authored 18 best-selling books, is an entrepreneur and speaker. More to the point, he is a thought leader – a well respected and trusted leader who inspires through innovative ideas, practices, and shares insights and know-how. The topics he addresses are diverse and include the post-industrial revolution, the connection economy, the way ideas spread, marketing, failure, leadership, education, choosing yourself, and change – to name a few.

He also popularized the idea of tribes – “a group of people connected to one another, connected to a leader, and connected to an idea.” A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate.

Defining Seth’s tribe is tricky business, yet that he has one is undeniable. The unifying theme of Seth’s work, speeches and writing is—change through work that matters. He marries this with a deep appreciation and understanding of the challenges both personal and systemic to turning visions of a better world into realities.     

Now, to describe the Ruckusmaker seminar on the weekend of March 6 – 8, 2015…

Readers of Seth’s Blog received their daily post with an invitation to apply for a weekend seminar “for those making a ruckus.” Little information was provided but the goal was clearly stated: “to create a posture of forward motion, a platform you can use to elevate your work, your company and your team.” Those who applied did so based on trust (of Seth), instinct (to choose themselves) and vision (of what could be).

Purple Crayon

Inside the Purple Crayon

Only the first 200 applications were considered, and of those, 80 were invited to attend. Master orchestrator, Winnie Kao seamlessly brought it all together at the intimate and beautiful Purple Crayon in Hasting on Hudson, NY. The two and a half day seminar was, as Seth explained, a marathon not a sprint. A fair share of the time Seth spoke on guiding principles for successful projects and used a variety of examples to bring home points. Interwoven was ample Q&A time, small group activities like building marshmallow structures and helping fellow attendees define their project. The icing on the cake – yummy wine, chocolate sampling, delicious lunches and unlimited coffee and tea as fuel.

The Ruckusmakers themselves were equally as important as the content covered. The attendees, plus the equally exceptional volunteers, represented a wide range of industries – marketing, technology, sustainability, film, health, education, for profit, non-profit and everything in between. On paper, this is an intimidating bunch. One could easily expect a gathering of this caliber to resemble a shark tank (not the TV show). Yet collectively, Ruckusmakers were a kind, driven, thoughtful bunch. They were willing to be vulnerable, ask questions and acknowledge their fears. Perhaps, the best characterization of this group is—entrepreneurial with heart.  

In sum, the Ruckusmakers seminar was a gathering of highly-motivated, successful, business minded change makers, willing to recognize they could do more, that obstacles, internal and external need to be addressed. With Seth’s guidance and fellow attendees to both push and support, Ruckusmakers took the leap of faith necessary to continue on the journey of creating change that matters, of taking their craft to the next level, and of bringing their art into the world.

Ruckusmakers group picture

Ruckusmakers group picture

For personal reflections on what transpired during the weekend gathering, there is no substitute for the voices of the Ruckusmakers themselves. Below is a compilation of blog posts, articles, and other brilliant work by Ruckusmakers reflecting on their experience. Their takeaways and thoughts speak volumes on the profound impact of the seminar and their time together. Enjoy… 

All photos on this page and many more of the seminar are courtesy of Kara Fein and available on Flickr.