The Boiling Point Podcast

Pounce on your Opportunities

 

Introducing Ken MacLeod

Sometimes the only thing holding you back from achieving any goal is your own hesitation. No journey has ever happened where someone hasn’t taken the first step. Ken MacLeod and the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra know all about this.

Back in 2002, Ken’s daughter had finally been accepted into the NBYO after applying for her third time. When Ken was dropping her off at a summer camp weekend, when he heard that the NBYO had been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall. There was only one problem; the orchestra was not in the financial position to accept the invite.   However, Ken thought, “how can we not say yes?” and started working toward raising the $140,000 it would take to join the show. At the time, the orchestra comprised of 70 musicians and one orchestra. They had an annual budget of $25,000 and only two part-time staff members. The orchestra would perform five concerts with a total of 1,000 patrons. Not only did Ken raise the money for the Carnegie Hall concert, but over the years and under his leadership the orchestra now has 800 kids with a budget of $2.5 million, 55 employees, 82 concerts yearly, with 31,000 patrons. 

Ken credits the success from recognizing opportunities when they come and pouncing on them. He sees decisiveness as the number one quality of leadership and through his lack of hesitation the NBYO has won an East Coast Music Award, been nominated for three others. They have also been the subject of two nationally televised documentaries (including Sistema Revolution produced by Hemmings House Pictures). Most importantly the NBYO has produced social change for underprivileged children by increasing their focus, cooperation, and discipline, as well as, improving their academic performance and school absenteeism. 

Check out this week’s Boiling Point to learn why it is important to jump at your opportunities and to see how a small group of people can make real social change.

 

In this episode

  • Ken tells us how he got involved with the NBYO and how he knows Greg.
  • We hear about the amazing transformation the NBYO has had in the last decade.
  • Ken tells us how pouncing at opportunities is the real key to success.
  • Ken tells us how a revolutionary program in Venezuela impacted the NBYO and how both programs have become a shinning example to the world.
  • We discuss how classical music is not just for the elite and can actually be the spark toward social change.
  • We learn how the NBYO and El Sistema have changed the lives of kids in New Brunswick.
  • Ken discusses the perils of hesitation and how leadership is just ordinary people doing extraordinary things one-step at a time.
  • Ken also tells us what is next for the NBYO.
  • Dave appreciates Ken’s approach to leadership and his practical way of seeing opportunity and taking steps toward it.
  • Greg is inspired by how Ken puts in so much time toward something that isn’t his fulltime job and how a small group of people can make such a huge impact.
  • Greg also tells our audience how they can see Hemmings House’s “Sistema Revolution”

 

Links

- The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra Website

- The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra on Facebook

- The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra on Twitter

- The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra on YouTube

- El Sistema Websites

- Watch Sistema Revolution (Canadians Only)

 

Direct download: BP077KenMacLeod.mp3
Category:entrepreneurship -- posted at: 6:31pm -04

Conservation Capitalism

 

Introducing Jeff Schnurr

The saying goes, “there is more than one way to skin a cat.” The same is true for conservation. The choice doesn’t have to be between jobs and preservation because there is a middle ground. Jeff Schnurr knows this, and his organization, Community Forests International, both aids in the conservation of forests and is a moneymaking entity. 

After he completed high school in Sackville, New Brunswick, Jeff started tree planting and traveling the world. He ended up in Pemba, Tanzania (an island in the Indian Ocean), where over the years his efforts led to trees being planted, renewable energy projects, as well as agriculture projects. The goal was to work with the community in Pemba and develop new ways for people on the island to live on the land and make an income. Through the efforts of Community Forests International, over 1.5 million trees, over 100 football fields of agriculture have been produced.

Jeff has since taken what he has learned from the Pemba projects and translated them back to New Brunswick and developed a way practice sustainable forestry while storing carbon and selling carbon offsets. Check out this week’s Boiling Point to see how conservation and capitalism can work in harmony.

 

In this episode

  • We hear how Jeff got involved with worldwide conservation.
  • Jeff discusses the great things that are happening in Pemba, and how he has taken what he has learned back to Canada.
  • We learn how not all forestry is harmful and practices that actually improve the health of the forest.
  • We discuss the middle ground of conservation and capitalism.
  • Jeff describes his interesting business model and what carbon trading is all about.
  • He also tells us how he focuses his attention with projects happening on both sides of the world.
  • Jeff also tells us about how it is easy to find people when you have an organization based on a belief.
  • We learn why New Brunswick was low-hanging fruit for Community Forests International and what comes next for the organization.
  • Dave loves how Community Forests International has an educational component and learns how much potential we have in our woods.
  • Greg loves the idea of taking on conservation with an entrepreneurial approach.

 

Links

- Community Forests International Website

- Community Forests International Facebook

- Community Forests International Twitter

 

 

Direct download: BP076JeffSchnurr.mp3
Category:entrepreneurship -- posted at: 4:30pm -04

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