Mar 302011

What happens when someone does a web search on your name? Are you telling your own story or is someone else? Don’t let others hijack your name as a top result on search engines and taint your reputation by presenting you in a less than flattering light.

You have to have a web presence. Tell your own story. Having a personal website (or blog) is being called personal branding. There are books and many articles written about why it’s important. Finding examples is sorta scattered all over the web. Here’s 5 basic types of personal websites to help visualize what your web presence could look like:

1. single web page – A basic web presence; a landing page; a digital business card:

2. website + blog combo – the home page has a plethora of features along with most recent blog entries:

3. personal blog – blog-centric, the most recent blog entry is prominently displayed, maybe with extra pages to describe services and/or podcasts and/or whatever:

4. brochure with a blog – a splash/landing page with basic info and a blog (some updated more often than others); the blog is on separate web page(s) than the home page:

5. business web site – website uses a company name rather than a personal name; typical of a freelancer with (usually) single person or a few people:

Since the home page of (practically) any website gets the most web traffic, so you’d want to emphasize what you think is most important to your website visitors. Any other comments you’d add?

Quick start tip: have something! If Google doesn’t see you, do you exist? If you’re able to keep a blog updated at least once a week, put that more prominently (#2 or #3); if you’d prefer to feature your services and updates are infrequent, #4 or #5 would fit you better.

Contact me for personal coaching about establishing your personal web presence, personal branding, and strategies for extending your online engagement.

Mar 282011

What’s the right mix of features for your online meeting? The terms aren’t all that consistent, the dust hasn’t settled, and the features set from different vendors are all over the map. Some call it a web meeting when multiple participants can all show video/audio and use a collaborative space for presentation/ whiteboard/ screen sharing. Some call it webinar when presenter(s) can talk thru a presentation/ screen sharing with a group of attendees. Some call it a web conference or online training or online meeting or webcast. A lot of creativity, and, confusion.
Videoblogging Webinar 5/20/10: Brightcove and Get Seen
There’s the big 2: WebEx and GotoMeeting/ GotoWebinar/ GotoTraining. There are pricey solutions costing $125+ per month or $0.33ish per minute per user seat. But none of those fit my needs or my budget.

I’m looking for one that’d do a few key things all in one, and it shouldn’t be that hard, but it sure has been hard to find. I’m looking for a web app (meaning no software download to install for presenter or attendees) that:

  • shows video from presenter webcam,
  • chat room for attendees’ interaction,
  • VoIP or phone dial-in for attendees in listener-only mode,
  • presentation area for powerpoint or desktop sharing,
  • and one-click recording of the session as a downloadable video file.

Other features would be nice but not necessary. I’ve found dozens of solutions that do all but one of what i’ve listed, but not one with all of ‘em. Sigh. Help?

Mar 252011

Thanks to Mark DeYmaz and Toginet Radio, Laurence “abcpastor” Tom and I were on The Multiethnic Church radio show yesterday. The show was recorded live, and we discussed about all kinds of issues related to how Asian Americans are connecting with the multiethnic church at large. Listen here (mp3):

I’d love to continue the conversation here — add a comment below — and also in person at the Multiethnic Church Pre-Conference @ Exponential this April 26-29 in sunny Orlando, Florida. Let’s talk live over lunch (if it helps, lunch is on me.)

Subscribe to the podcast of the Multiethnic Church radio show to listen to past shows and listen live on Thursdays at 1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT. It’s a live call-in show, too, so dial-in with your comments and questions.

Mar 242011

Had a video chat this week with Tim Goetz about a new accounting software called Aplos. I first met Tim through several Leadership Network events convening multi-site churches with 4+ locations; Tim was from The Well in Fresno. And, if you watch the interview to the end, you’ll get a special bonus for trying out Aplos fund accounting software while it’s in beta phase.

Non-profit organizations and churches have a unique situation that most (?) accounting software do not easily address. Either the accounting software has too many features, as if it were written for an accountant, or not enough features that’d be needed for non-profits to track donations from individuals & print out annual contribution letters, and to track money given to specific funds and spending from specific funds. That’s what I heard from the video interview; I’m not sure what all the above means, since, I confess, I have a hard enough time balancing my check book.

Side note: the video recording didn’t capture my webcam correctly, so I annotated the video with caption to make it flow.

Mar 232011

We live in an amazing time in human history — the leaderless revolution in Egypt was fueled, by social media tools. And we don’t hear as much about the details about how it all happened in mainstream media, because there’s not one person to interview nor one person to represent the revolution.

It’s pure people power. This is Revolution 2.0 and no one is the hero. Wael Ghonim spoke at TEDxCairo, telling the back story of the past two months, “Inside the Egyptian Revolution,” when everyday Egyptians showed that “the power of the people is stronger than the people in power.

This is a striking contrast to how leaders and organizations have historically done things. Now, more than ever, a loosely connected group of people can achieve great things via the wisdom of the crowd. Love it!

What does that mean for the church? Could the church thrive even more, in a revolutionary manner, if she were to highlight the voices of the everyday followers of Christ rather (or, in addition to) the leading voices of gifted communicators and organizational leaders?

2 sociologists has described this social dynamic of faith and religion, Max Weber and Werner Stark. Max Weber’s theory of the organizational psychology has been popularized in the “church growth movement” that casts a shadow on how the American church has organized itself during recent decades. In essence, the success and life of a church revolves around a gifted individual leader,

…. With the magic-like power of charisma, the leader gains the personal loyalty and devotion of a circle of followers. Charismatic authority is centered in the personality of the leader. The bonds of personal loyalty become the basis of a “charismatic community.” … The prophet is the religious founder or reformer who initiates religious change by delivering new revelation… The prophet possesses genuine charisma, a personal power and authority…

The above quote is excerpted from “The Collective Charisma of the Catholic Church: Werner Stark’s Critique of Max Weber’s Routinization Theory” (a paper by John L. Gresham, Jr. in The Catholic Social Science Review, Volume VIII, 2003.) My colleague Chuck Fromm pointed me towards this contrasting insight of Werner Stark, the lesser known sociologist ::

… As a sociologist, Stark questions Weber’s extreme individualism. Stark finds a certain blind spot in Weber’s outlook: Weber recognizes the role of individual charisma in founding and forming a religious collective but fails to recognize the role of a religious collective in fostering individual charisma … closer consideration notes the connections among outbreaks of charisma in such movements as the Benedictines, Franciscans, Jesuits and others. Each and every movement represents a variation and expression of the charisma of Christ, pointing toward a social collective charisma. … Stark emphasizes the role of the community or institution in communicating charisma.

I confess that I too get lost in the academic-speak. What I gather is that there’s a charisma — a gift of grace — that can be embodied in an individual or in a collective group. This dynamic that starts and sustains a religion can start revolutions too.

cf. Read the paper, The Collective Charisma of the Catholic Church: Werner Stark’s Critique of Max Weber’s Routinization Theory

Mar 182011

Adding to the discussion about leadership development, DJ Chuang Ed Choyin this episode of the Multi-Asian Church Podcast Series, Ed Choy and I talk about owning the vision of an multi-Asian/multi-ethnic churches.
Episode #6: Owning the Vision
(18:44; mp3 download link 8.9mb)

Show notes:

And here’s the video that Ed Choy mentioned of Alan Hirsch talking about the dangers of a risk-averse culture:

Subscribe to this iTunes podcast feed and get all future episodes automatically.

Mar 172011


I bind unto myself today
The strong Name of the Trinity,
By invocation of the same,
The Three in One and One in Three.

I bind this day to me for ever.
By power of faith, Christ’s incarnation;
His baptism in the Jordan river;
His death on Cross for my salvation;
His bursting from the spicèd tomb;
His riding up the heavenly way;
His coming at the day of doom;*
I bind unto myself today.
Continue reading »

Mar 112011

For those of you keeping score at home, this is episode number 5. DJ Chuang Ed Choy In this episode of the Multi-Asian Church Podcast Series, Ed Choy and I talk about developing Asian American leaders in the context of an multi-Asian/multi-ethnic churches. You’ll need to listen more carefully, since the background noise at this episode’s Starbucks (in Dallas) was louder than last week’s Starbucks location (in Newport Beach).
Episode #5: Leadership Development
(24:45; mp3 download link 11.3mb)

Show notes:

Go ahead. You are invited to chime in and add a comment below.

Subscribe to this iTunes podcast feed and get all future episodes automatically.

Mar 032011

The conversation continues. Ed Choy DJ ChuangIn episode 4 of the Multi-Asian Church Podcast Series, Ed Choy and I discuss leadership, and how can church leaders better develop and connect with Asian American leaders.

Episode #4: Leadership
(22:27; mp3 download link 10.8mb)

Show notes:

Subscribe to this iTunes podcast feed and get all future episodes automatically.