Summer Recruitment for Fraternities (4 Part Series)


Our friend Alex Carrick, a consultant for Phi Delta Theta Fraternity recently wrote a four part series of blogs for fraternities about SUMMER RECRUITMENT .  He did a fantastic job (and there are lots of hints that he’s a Dynamic Recruitment fan spread throughout the blogs.  We wanted to make sure we shared these great summer recruitment tips with all our readers.  Thanks Alex for letting us share your great ideas!

Part 1
Think about it. Summer is the perfect time to get a head start before the thought of recruitment crosses other chapter’s collective minds. If you have never done summer recruitment it may feel a little bit strange. The goal of this series of blog posts is to take out the guess work and give you a path to follow.  Read more here .

Part 2
After covering the basics, the next step is to set up the structure that will propel your chapter to success in summer recruitment. Remember that the key to recruitment is making friends. Therefore the foundation for your summer recruitment plan should be to create opportunities to build relationships. Crazy right?  Read more here .

Part 3
After creating a flawless Summer Recruitment foundation there’s only one question left: where do you find people? Here’s a couple strategies: Read more here.

Part 4
Hopefully at this point you have executed a successful Summer Recruitment program and have numerous guys signed before they step on campus (assuming that it’s within the rules). The real magic happens once those men you recruited turn around and start recruiting for you. Read more here .

The Parable of the Bricklayers

by Josh Orendi

bricklayer Have you ever heard the parable of the bricklayer?  An Australian company launched a campaign using an online children’s book and an old fable to move people toward their cause.  Before going on, read the short fable here .

That got my wheels spinning.  A series of questions came to mind:

How do we communicate with our members and prospects?  For that matter, what is the dialogue in our own minds about the daily things we’re doing on behalf of the organization?  Suffering bricklayer? Laboring volunteer?  Grateful contributor?  Perspective is a powerful thing.

The same activities (paperwork, Names List, recruitment meeting) can be defined as menial painful tasks or critical next steps toward the purpose of the organization.  What we choose to believe becomes our reality, impacts our productivity, and draws/repels people to/from our cause.

Bonus Thought: How would the story of your organization be told through a Children’s book?  If we could only communicate our recruitment message through a children’s book, what pictures and words would you choose to tell our story?  Or, here’s a blended fun zone and deep zone question:  How could the story of YOUR organizational experience to be written in a real children’s book that you would someday read to your own children?

Matter To The World

by Matt Mattson

ob-pn130_bkrvto_dv_20110907164033 We all want to matter, don’t we? I do. Someday when I leave this world I want to know that the life I lived meant something. I want to know that I’ve left a mark on the world.  I want to know that I’ve mattered.

I’m willing to guess that’s a pretty universal desire. But how do we matter?

I’m reading Blake Mykoskie’s book, Start Something that Matters right now, and that question is really ringing loudly in my ears at the moment.  How do we really matter?

There are a lot of ways to matter.  We matter to our loved ones.  We matter to our pets.  We matter to our workplaces.  But the more and more I think about it, one of the best ways to truly matter to the world is… 1) be about something — some cause, some purpose, 2) inspire others to also be about that thing, 3) gather those people together to act on that thing.  This is Social Excellence .

Here’s an excerpt from our new book, Social Excellence: We Dare You ; How Hand Handshakes Can Change The World .

If you want to leave your mark; if you want to establish a legacy; if you want to be remembered; if you want to look back on your life at 109 years old and know that it was all worth it, gather people together around a purpose that matters to you and go. Change the world based on your vision of how it should be.

All great movements started with one or two people sitting around saying, “The world would be better if…”

Sometimes they started slightly smaller with phrases like:
“This town would be better if…”
“Our people would be better off if…”
“This company would be better if…”
“I wish someone in this school would …”
“What really pisses me off is …”
“Why the $#@! doesn’t somebody just …”

All these statements are about changing some part of the world, but ideas alone aren’t enough. Many people have dreamy ideas and do nothing with them. True revolutionaries understand two things:

  1. You have to actually DO something.
  2. You’ll have more impact on the world if you don’t do it alone. In fact, the more people you have helping, the larger your impact is likely to be.

Right after that section of the book, we share the story of Blake Mykoskie and TOMS shoes as an example of Social Excellence.  See, so many people think Social Excellence is just about being nice to people — it’s about that, but about so much more too.  Connecting with people, shaking hands, having conversations, building relationships are the building blocks that make it possible to gather others together around your cause.

Want to matter to the world?  Start by shaking some hands today and see where it leads.

We Love Formal Recruitment

by Jessica Gendron Williams

LOGO I Heart Recruitment Final We love formal sorority recruitment. We the sorority experts at Phired Up Productions, we love formal recruitment!  We’ll scream it!  We LOVE it!

This phrase may be shocking to some of you who have seen our work, read I Heart Recruitment , or attended any of the number of programs we’ve done.  So, let me explain.  Formal recruitment, at its very core, is amazing.  It allows us, in a relatively short amount of time, to get interested women into our organizations.  The problem with Formal Recruitment is that we’ve made it dirty – we’ve twisted and convoluted the process over the years – we’ve forgotten why formal recruitment really matters.

Let’s start with a little bit of a different context.  At the inception of sororities and from the beginnings of sorority recruitment, our organizations hosted events because there were women who wanted to join sororities.  However, these women didn’t want to join sororities because it offered them quick access to fraternity men, social status, popularity, parties, prestige and power.  Women wanted to join our organizations because they were about something – they were making meaningful and powerful change in the world — our world.

Yep, sororities were changing the world.  We were fighting for a woman’s right to an education.  We were supporting women in an academically rigorous environment that most people believed women couldn’t be successful in.  We were supporting each other in an environment that was unsupportive.  We were giving women a place to belong in an environment where women were prohibited from belonging to most student organizations.  We were helping women grow as individuals and offered them a supportive environment to discover their true authentic self.  We were, dare I say, feminists, before the term was popular.  Women came to our organizations for all these reasons.  They came to sororities to be a part of something that mattered, not only to their lives, but the world.   As access to higher education for women grew, so did interest in sororities.  We, out of necessity, had to start hosting “recruitment events”.

Somewhere along the line, however, between our early beginnings and now, the process has been distorted.  We began to care less about the reason women were interested in our organizations and more about getting bodies in the door. We began to care less about which women will help us advance our cause and more concerned with which women might increase our popularity or status.  We began to care less about the quality of women we were recruiting and more obsessed with the quantity of women we were recruiting.  In fact, I would boldly argue, that we now define our formal recruitment success by how big our pledge class is and how “cute” our new members are (or rather how cute the fraternity men think they are).  We’ve filled our formal processes with skits and chants and elaborate decorations and fancy outfits and perfect hair and perfect makeup and the glitz and the glam and the superficial conversations and meaningless criteria and emotional decision-making and crafts – oh the crafts!  If our founders could, they’d likely pop straight up out of their final resting places, march up to our front doors, and light a torch to our streamers.  We’ve forgotten the legacy they left us.

We’ve forgotten why we exist and how the formal recruitment process should reinforce our mission not undermine it.

But don’t quit reading yet!  We’re on your team!

We believe in the power of sororities to change the world.  We believe in the power of formal recruitment as a means to attract and engage high quality women in our cause.  We believe that Formal Recruitment can be a powerful, moving, and fun experience for everyone involved, but we’ve got to get back to our roots and discover how the process can positively reinforce the values and value of sorority in women’s lives.  That process focuses on building meaningful relationships through powerful conversations with Potential New Members.  It focuses on measurable criteria that PNM’s can meet that aligns with the values and goals of the organization and allows sorority women to make objective decisions instead of subjective, emotional decisions about a PNM’s qualifications for membership.  It focuses on making our behavior within the process align with our stated values.  It focuses on driving higher quality women that can meet our standards into our process, instead of lower our standards to meet the pool of women already in the process .  It focuses on being honest and upfront about the commitment it takes to be a sorority woman.  It focuses on Curiosity, Generosity, Authenticity, and Vulnerability.  We love Formal Recruitment because it has the possibility to be this…to be better…to align with the legacy our founders left to us.  WE LOVE FORMAL RECRUITMENT!


Sorority Recruitment Idea: Pinterest

by Shira Tober


87% of Pinterest users are women.   Why not use Pinterest to help our women’s organizations grow.  Here’s the plan for a Pinterest-style activity to drive names onto your Names List:


  • 6-8 large Poster Boards and designate them as Themed Boards
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Markets of assorted colors
  • LOTS of old Magazines
  • Table


  1. Set up shop at a fairly congested area of campus (student union, library, quad, gymnasium, etc)
  2. Have a table and all your materials for the Pinterest boards
  3. Don’t stand behind the table with a random sign announcing what you’re doing
  4. Stand in front of the table
  8. While they are decorating, engage in conversation, get to know them, and have reason to get contact information and follow up-encourage people to look through the magazines, color, draw, or write words/phrases/quotes/etc
  9. REASON FOR CONTACT INFORMATION EXCHANGE/FOLLOW UP:  “Thanks so much for participating in our real life Pinterest Board. Once all the boards are decorated we are going to frame them and hang them out.  I’d love to send you a picture of the finished project or even have you over to look at it.  Why don’t we exchange emails so I can keep you posted?”
  10. Follow through and finish boards.  Frame them and hang them. (And post pictures of them on Pinterest).
  11. Send follow up email/text/call to your new friend and invite them to come see the finished product.
  12. Continue to build a relationship.
  13. Share about your organization.
  14. Potentially recruit.
  15. Rinse and repeat.

YOLO: A Call to Social Excellence

by Shira Tober

According to Wikipedia the phrase Carpe Diem (seize the day) became a highly used phrase in pop culture in 1989 when Robin Williams’ character uses the Latin phrase in an inspirational speech in Dead Poets Society.  Seize the Day became the motto of living one’s life to the fullest in the 1990s and 2000s.  And thanks to the amazing rapper Drake , our generation has our own Carpe Diem motto to live by: YOLO.  You Only Live Once.

You Only Live Once, so make it count.  For many college students this motto has been used as a reason to drink and party and do all the things we never want our parents to find out about.  In fact, I recently heard that some Greek chapters are having mixers/ theme parties/ socials with the theme YOLO.  As much as we’d like to think that Drake is giving us permission to engage in all out debauchery , I recently saw an image on Pinterest that has got me thinking about how we can better live by the YOLO motto:


You Only Live Once so, go out and do something with your life that matters.  Don’t sit on the sidelines and let others create, innovate, and lead.  You Only Live Once so change the world.

Odds are if you’re reading this blog it’s because you’ve been introduced to Phired Up through an organization you belong to.  Organizations change the world.  You can change the world when you have people and a purpose around you.  Grow the number of people you have around your purpose so you can continue to change the world.  But remember, if You Only Live Once by drinking, smoking, and making an ass of yourself, you will recruit people who believe in the same.  But, if You Only Live Once by surrounding yourself with quality individuals, you will do something that matters.  Like recruits like and high quality people surround themselves with other high quality people.  High quality people gathered around a purpose change the world.

Our message of Social Excellence is a related call to YOLO.  People who choose Social Excellence as a lifestyle find their lives fuller, richer, overflowing with relationships and meaning.  You only live once, and the value of our lives are greatly determined by the quality and diversity of the people we surround ourselves with.  Go shake someone’s hand, have a powerful conversation, connect, inspire, be inspired, engage… You only live once, after all.

Thanks Drake for giving our generation a motto to live by, we will make you proud.  PS I love you

Don’t Grow Up

by Colleen Coffey-Melchiorre, Ed.D.

kids_playing1 I am often around kids. I have a child, spend a lot of time in the local Children’s Hospital, and truly enjoy the presence of little ones in general. I think children and good researchers are the most curious populations currently in our society. I love the way children wonder about the world and believe in limitless possibility. It is impossible for children to fake much of anything. Kids are authentic and are rarely afraid to show their feelings.

Think about when a child gets hurt or is scared or is excited- it is almost unheard of for them to be shy about their emotions- they are quite comfortable with being vulnerable and are generous with their time and, depending upon their personality, are sometimes generous with their affection.

This evening as I was watching my little nieces play in the park I noticed something- kids instantly connect to one another just because they are kids. I watched as my six-year-old niece went right up to a child she had never met and said “wanna play?” To which the other child responded “sure- let’s run.” They ran for 20 minutes, laughing the entire time- just running. I watched in wonder at my two year old niece as she bashfully played hide and go seek with another child whom she had never met. She does not even really talk but can make a friend in a moment just because they are both kids. The park was full of them- children everywhere being Socially Excellent.

There is a whole subset of our society that is naturally authentic, vulnerable, generous, and curious.

When do we lose the ability to turn strangers into friends? Is it 3rd grade? High school? College?

When does it become socially unacceptable to walk up to a stranger and strike up a conversation?

When do we lose that childlike wonder and why do we lose it? More importantly, how do we get it back?

While there are probably a lot of folks telling you to “grow up” I would say maybe the best thing you can do is “get younger”- at least in the sense of relationship building and values. Somewhere along the line we unlearn an inherent birth right which looks suspiciously like Social Excellence to me…

“The illiterates of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn”- Alvin Toffler

Meet the Fastest Growing Fraternity in the Nation … Alpha Sigma Phi, 60% Growth Rate Per Year!

[This post is one of several in a series of "Recruitment Spotlight" articles highlighting successful organizational growth]

by Josh Orendi

alpha_sigma_phi_seal_72dpiIf your reaction to that title was “really!??” or “how is that possible” or “Alpha Sigma who?” you’re not alone. It’s hard to believe that a fraternity founded in 1845 could fly under the interfraternal radar with barely 50 chapters for the last 100 years then suddenly explode on the scene by nearly doubling its chapter count and more than doubling total membership in the last 3 years (that was not a typo, go back and read the last sentence again). Alpha Sig is challenging the status quo of what fraternity growth is supposed to look like. Their high-octane expansion is paired with an innovative support model that is producing sustainable, record breaking results.

I sat down at Starbucks in Carmel, Indiana for an early Wednesday morning interview with Alpha Sig’s Executive Director, Gordy Heminger, and the Director of Chapter & Colony Development, Matt Humberger. These guys are the real deal – full of intensity, passion, focus, and a unified vision. It turns out that’s true of their personal lives as well as their business lives. As I walked in the coffee shop I immediately noticed they were in a forward leaning, heated discussion and to my surprise, they were wearing gym clothes and hoodies complete with Alpha Sigma Phi embroidered baseball caps….

Phired Up: Good morning.

Alpha Sig: [Matt] Hey, Josh, do you know what major league baseball team has the longest streak of failing to make the post season?

Phired Up: I’m guessing you know I’m from Pittsburgh … the Pirates?

Alpha Sig: [Matt] Good guess, but no. They’re the third worst. It’s actually the Washington Nationals. They haven’t made the playoffs in 28 years! Most people wouldn’t guess that because they changed cities from Montreal in 2005…. I love baseball season. By the way, thanks for agreeing to meet with us an hour earlier than our original time.

Phired Up: My pleasure. Are you guys heading to the office from here (sarcastically)?

Alpha Sig: [Gordy] Not until I hit the gym. (looks at his phone) Personal trainer is meeting me in 32 minutes.

Phired Up: I didn’t realize I was on the clock. In that case, let’s jump in. Are the rumors true? I heard a well informed volunteer say 60% growth per year and that Alpha Sigma Phi has doubled in the last three years?

Alpha Sig: (devilish grin) Yes. We’re really proud of the hard work that our undergraduates, professional staff, and volunteers put in the last few years. We’re experiencing unprecedented growth. Here, we brought you the numbers:

Total New Members

2008/09 – 854

2009/10 – 1282

2010/11 – 1330

2011/12 – 923 (Fall only); will be over 1700 new members this year

Total Chapters/Colonies/Interest Groups

2009 – 64

2010 – 76

2011 – 85

2012 – 100

Growth Projection

2013 – 16 new groups

2014 – 16 new groups

2015 – 20 new groups

2016 – 20 new groups

Phired Up: I’m pretty sure these numbers make Alpha Sig the fastest growing fraternity in the country! How did you accomplish in 3 years what hasn’t been done in the organization’s previous 165 years?

Alpha Sig: Our board and staff are focusing our resources – human and financial – on supported growth. In the past we were stretched too thin. Today, we choose to use volunteers or outsource anything that we can’t do with excellence on our own.

Phired Up: You said, “supported growth.” What did you mean by that?

Alpha Sig: We’re proud of the numbers, but Alpha Sig is not a fraternity that goes everywhere and recruits anyone. We have a targeted, intentional approach and we take pride in the experience we provide for each member. Our chapters are receiving unprecedented levels of training and volunteer support.

Phired Up: Are you leveraging technology to do more with less or is there something else?

Alpha Sig: Technology has certainly helped. We were the first NIC fraternity offering cutting edge, online member education through our partnership with Big Fish. Also, we were the first national organization to provide every chapter with a free account with WebGreek for website services and backend chapter management. Oh, and Facebook has been huge. But, mostly we’ve gotten better at connecting our base of alumni with our chapters in a way that both are excited to work together. Our volunteers have taken over doing a lot of things the headquarters staff used to be responsible for – and quite frankly they’re better at it than we ever were. Technology helps but we never forget that we’re in a relationship business.

Phired Up: Tell me more about the volunteer and training pieces.

Alpha Sig: 62% of chapters and colonies attended our Burns Leadership Institute, 97% of chapters attended Academy of Leadership, and the Elevate conference became more professional in design while quadrupling its impact to reach nearly 250 undergraduate members. We’ve responded to the growing needs of our growing membership by more than doubling our professional staff and growing our volunteer network. In fact, the fraternity has increased the number of recognized chapter advisory boards from two in 2009 to 50+ in 2012. The coolest part of that statistic is that our chapter advisory boards now require 6 volunteers as opposed to a requirement of 3 in the past. Only a handful of chapters just have one advisor so even the chapters that don’t have a recognized chapter advisory board have more than one volunteer involved in supporting the group. Our standards and support model are increasing at the same time we are increasing our membership.

Phired Up: So this isn’t all about getting as big as you can as quick as you can through expansion?

Alpha Sig: No! We’re serving our current chapters at a high level and offering hands on recruitment help to those in need. Since 2009 we’ve helped 7 chapters with a headquarters led recruitment. We’re working hard to make sure our growth is sustainable for new and existing chapters. In fact, our retention rates are up in our expansion efforts from roughly 75% in 2009 to nearly 93% this past year. To be blunt, we’re recruiting better men at the same time we’re recruiting more men, and we’re giving them all a better fraternity experience.

Back Story & Disclosure: Phired Up co-founders Matt Mattson & Josh Orendi served on the Alpha Sigma Phi national fraternity staff as Leadership Consultants and Directors of Expansion between 1999-2002. Gordy was a Leadership Consultant on the professional staff (and Josh’s roommate) from 1999-2000.

Phired Up: Why now? Gordy, what is Alpha Sig doing different now than when you and I served on staff after college – let alone the 150+ years before then?

Alpha Sig: Here’s one big difference: We rarely hire guys right out of college. Today, Alpha Sig’s consultant team includes a guy with a law degree, a past employee in sales, and a guy with business experience. We only have one staff member that joined staff straight from his undergrad experience. Five members of our team have master’s degrees and Four members of our headquarters staff have masters degrees in higher education … three are former Greek Advisors. That’s important since 87% of our chapters received visits from headquarters this academic year.

Phired Up: What!? That hiring model is so different from what Alpha Sig used to do, and it’s very different from the traditional consultant/expansion model of other fraternity headquarters.

Alpha Sig: We’re hiring professionals to do professional work. We’ve recently hired two staff members who are not members – Tabatha Sarco and Danny Miller. We like that type of diversity of thought and experience. We think the number of staff members we have with higher education degrees and Greek advising backgrounds puts us in a position to better understand how we can improve upon the partnerships we have with our host institutions.

Phired Up: I feel like Alpha Sig has been under the interfraternal radar. How have you been able to keep all this success and change a secret?

Alpha Sig: We haven’t been trying to keep it a secret. We just weren’t talking about it. We wanted to wait until we had evidence and a story to tell before we started sharing what we’ve learned. And, to be completely honest, we’ve just been too busy doing the work to realize others didn’t know what we were doing.

Phired Up: Is there anything you know today that you wish you had known three years ago?

Alpha Sig: I wish we would have started with our 4 step process for expansion from the beginning.

Phired Up: Four step process. What is that?

Alpha Sig: We have a 4 stage business model for new groups. There are benchmarks with each step. The biggest change was moving initiation before chartering. We stopped treating colonies and interest groups like “pledges” for 2 years before they could charter. Now we train and educate new groups the same way we want them to educate new members. We’re modeling the way so they’re operating like a successful Alpha Sig chapter from the very beginning.

Phired Up: Let me tee one up for you. Hundreds of campus professionals are likely to read this article. Why should a campus pursue Alpha Sig for expansion?

Alpha Sig: Expansion – when done right – is good for the entire fraternity community. Here are three things we like to share with campuses we’re considering for expansion. 1) We have a track record of success so the IFC and campus can feel confident we’ll produce results in quantity and quality. 2) We have a five year support model for new groups so schools know we’re committed for the long haul. 3) Alpha Sig is committed to deep campus partnerships – so much so that we have four staff members with professional higher education backgrounds.

Phired Up: I’ve heard you talk about the last few years as “transformative” for Alpha Sigma Phi. What has been the biggest challenge?

Alpha Sig: Getting people to believe has been harder than we imagined. Our own alumni have been some of the hardest to win over. We’ve literally had conversations that sound like they belong in an undergrad chapter meeting. Long time alumni volunteers have told me, “I don’t want us to get too big … we’ll have to sacrifice brotherhood/quality.” In my opinion, they’re not choosing to see opportunities. They’re letting our past or fear of the future control our destiny. Fear is hard to overcome! I believe one measure of our success as an organization is the number of men’s lives we are positively impacting. When we grow, we fulfill our mission. Alpha Sig’s motto is “To Better The Man.” If we can give the gift of fraternity and better more men’s lives, the only question we should be asking is “why aren’t we doing more of that.”

Phired Up: What next? Now that you’ve made such a big splash in such a short period of time, what’s next?

Alpha Sig: This is very much the beginning, not the end. We’re just getting started. Now that we have a winning formula – high caliber staff, strong alumni support, great campus partnerships, and a consistent recruitment system – we’re ready to step on the gas. On top of the seven re-organized chapters, we’ve opened 41 groups since 2009 and the goal is to have 180 chapters and colonies by the end of 2016. That’s roughly 10 per semester. We know we still have a lot to learn and our model will continue to evolve.

Phired Up: If Alpha Sig can turn around a franchise that’s nearly two centuries old, do you think my Pittsburgh Pirates can see a playoff birth in 2012?

Alpha Sig: You’re probably better off hoping the Washington Nationals have another rough year.

Phired Up: That’s cruel.

Written by: Josh Orendi

Interview Date: March 28, 2012

Interviewer: Josh Orendi

Interviewed: Matt Humberger, Gordy Heminger

Be The Bubba in You

by Woody Woodcock with collaboration from Vince Fabra

In 1979, when I was born, a local merchant named Shelton Deloach, a dear friend of my father, posted a special message to welcome me into the world.  He posted “There is a new member of the Woodcock family. Congratulations future Master’s champion 1997” or something to that effect. Now, I did not go on to win the Masters in 1997 or any other year, but golf would become a huge part of my life. I could only dream of reaching the status of the greats, joining the ranks of Masters Champions and wearing that green jacket.

bubba-watson-wins-the-masters_450x276This past Sunday, Bubba Watson did just that. Bubba reached that status, joined those ranks and now wears that jacket. And I am green with envy.  There are three important lessons we will discover about Bubba in this blog related to authenticity, vulnerability, and bold creativity that can inspire you to be the Bubba — I mean BE THE PERSON you are designed to be.

Bubba Watson certainly has a unique style all his own. From his bright pink driver, to his floppy haircut, to his daring style of play, Bubba is as unique in the sport of golf as anyone. He famously boasts that he has never taken a lesson or examined his swing on video. He jokingly said in an interview, “If I start struggling, I guess I’ll have to find a new job.”

Let’s not confuse “never taking a lesson” with “never practicing”. This could not be further from the truth. I am sure that Bubba has worked his entire life for that moment on Sunday where he catapulted himself to victory out of the woods and on to the green of the tenth hole at Augusta National. He’s never taken a lesson, sure, but he has found a stroke that works for him and perfected it. His game is authentic.  Precisely why so many people love him for being, well, himself.

How can we emulate Bubba? What is the authentic swing or thing that is all your own? What one thing do you do that people are attracted to?  For Bubba it is hitting long drives and curving the golf ball with unthinkable creativity.  You would be wise to discover the authentic you and to embrace it.   Maybe you’ve never “taken a lesson” but you definitely have refined a skill or craft. How can you share that gift with others?

After sinking the putt and clinching victory, Bubba had several emotional embraces with the people he cares most about.  His caddy, his mother, his friends on the tour, his family. At the single most defining moment in his 33 years, he was overwhelmed with emotion while embracing those closest to him. Instead of it being a selfish moment, posing for pictures, it was a generous and vulnerable moment, celebrating with loved ones.  It was also very telling that people are gathered together around the type of authentic person and champion he is.

Who are the people that you share your accomplishments with? How can we be generous with our talents and the positive accolades that we may receive as a result of those talents? No one achieves anything alone. Who will be there to celebrate your next big moment?

If you watched the two hole playoff on Sunday, you saw the weekend’s best golfers battling for not only a snazzy green blazer, but golf immortality. After each player parred the 18th. They moved to the 10th tee box. Bubba is known for his long drive, and he bombed one way far but also way right. The ball ended up nestled in the pine straw in the woods that lined the fairway. It wasn’t looking good for Bubba. However, his second shot was easily the most courageous, bold and idiotic shot of his life. With the most improbable angle, about 155 yards away from the pin, Bubba swung from the deep woods. The ball started straight and began to curve 40 yards with a hook spin towards the cup as if he had it on a string. The greatest moment of his life was just a 10 foot putt away.

What bold choices and decisions are you making for greatness? What shots are you willing to take that others don’t even consider? Are you capable and prepared to make excellence appear in the worst of situations?


Step one: Find your authentic swing.

Step two:
Gather people that you want to collaborate with.

Step three: Make bold decisions for the sake of achieving your dreams.

He did it his way. He hit the ball in the center of the club and hit it hard. Be creative with your shots. He attracted people to his style of play long before he won the masters. Now he will have an even bigger fan base by joining another club or organization greater than just his accomplishments all his own.  He got there because his passion for golf and the members passion for golf and winning aligned.  If the past champions choose they can offer camaraderie, mentorship, encouragement and their own network to grow Bubba into a mature major winner.  He will become a great ambassador for Augusta National that inspires others to be authentic and strive for boldness.

At Phired Up we believe that a combined group of talented people can have a greater impact for their cause or belief because they make each other better and the cause they serve.  At Phired Up we are passionate about challenging you to be the person you were designed to be. When that happens, you must be the person who attracts people to your cause or belief through your own talents.

Read Anything Good Lately?

by Matt Mattson

cover-social-excellence-we-dare-youRead anything good lately? That’s one of my favorite questions to ask people I’ve just met.  It provides some good insight into the things that are important to them, allows them to disclose at whatever level they’re comfortable, and typically ends up giving me some good ideas to add to my personal reading list.

So, what are you reading right now?  I’ll be a little candid here and admit that I’m really flattered by all the schools and organizations that have chosen to use our new book, Social Excellence: We Dare You (and Good Guys or I Heart Recruitment) as their book club choices and/or summer readings.  We’ve had several inter/national fraternities and sororities, for example, choose to buy copies for all their summer conference attendees, and we have some schools using the book for their leadership or Freshman 101 classes.  How cool is that?

Thought I’d take a minute to share some other books that have inspired us…  Here’s a copied/pasted section of the Social Excellence book that shares just that…


Which books have you read and what are the five books you would like to read next. If you’re willing, we’d love to hear your book recommendations, too. E-mail them to or find us on Twitter (@PhiredUp) and Facebook (

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
by Stephen Covey

Fierce Conversations and Fierce Leadership
by Susan Scott

Never Eat Alone and Who’s Got Your Back
by Keith Ferrazzi

How to Start a Conversation & Make Friends
by Don Gabor

How to Talk to Anyone
by Leil Lowndes

How to Win Friends and Influence People
by Dale Carnegie

Let My People Go Surfing
by Yvon Chouinard

Little Black Book of Connections and others
by Jeffrey Gitomer

Remember Every Name Every Time
by Benjamin Levy

See You At The Top
by Zig Ziglar

Social Intelligence and Emotional Intelligence
by Daniel Goleman

Start with Why
by Simon Sinek

Tell To Win
by Peter Guber

The Fine Art of Small Talk
by Debra Fine

The Four Agreements
by Don Miguel Ruiz

The Gifts of Imperfection
by Brene Brown

The Likeability Factor
by Tim Sanders

The Power of Nice
by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval

The Social Animal
by David Brooks

by Dan Buettner

Tribes, Purple Cow, Linchpin and others
by Seth Godin

Bowling Alone
by Robert Putnam

By Ori and Rom Brafman

By Guy Kawasaki