Changing Everything on ChangeEverything.ca

When we first launched ChangeEverything.ca, it was a hectic and amazing time. Not enough time to get everything done. One of the areas I felt we could do better was site usability and overall design. Kate and I always felt like we wanted to go back and make some improvements.

So this year, we blocked out some budget and started working on fixing some of those areas. Among the areas we focused on were:

  • improving the registration flow
  • improving the workflow for adding changes and blog posts
  • grouping social features together so people discover each other and interact easier
  • putting a sharper focus on the people, and not just on the text
  • making the site, well, just prettier

It was a complete pleasure working with Kirsten Hall, an extraordinary usability consultant here in Vancouver, the amazing Tim McAlpine and his team at Currency Marketing on the front end design, and Affinity Bridge a great Drupal development shop in town.

The process, like the original creation of the site, was charmed. Everyone worked together well, there were no real hiccups, and people had a lot of fun.

The upcoming design changes, including as mock-up of the new look and feel, were announced on ChangeEverything.ca today. We’re looking for Beta testers, so check it out and help out if you want.

Otherwise, I’ll let you know when everything launches in September!

Young & Free Texas-style.

Young & Free TexasI’m a big fan of Currency Marketing‘s Young & Free Alberta campaign. I think it’s one of the smartest uses of social media to drive direct business results that I’ve ever seen.

When I speak to people about it, they have just one criticism. That Larissa Walkiw, the spokesperson of the Alberta program and an amazingly talented young woman, makes the whole campaign and you’ll never find another like her.

So a few months back when Tim McAlpine, the pioneer of Young & Free Alberta, announced that he was opening it up to allow for one credit union in each State or Province to replicate the program, I was very intrigued.

Now I see that he’s partnered with TDECU in Texas, the home of the amazing Trey Reeme, to launch Young & Free Texas.

You can also check out their Facebook fan page.

It will be fascinating to see how this new program progresses. I believe there are lots of talented and passionate young people who will take this program in new directions. That there is more than one Larissa, so to speak, and that there are amazing nooks and crannies that other people will take the program as spokesperson. But ultimately the proof will be in the pudding.

Congrats Tim, and good luck Trey and TDECU!

Make a plan for BarCampBankBC.

BarCampBank BCYesterday, Gene Blishen and I booked the space for BarCampBankBC. I’m very excited that we got such a great space at BCIT (British Columbia Institute of Technology).

BarCampBankBC will take place in Vancouver all day on Saturday, September 20th and a half day on Sunday the 21st. You can sign up here.

What is BarCampBankBC?

What if we changed banking and finance? The aim of BarCampBank is to foster innovations and the creation of new business models in the world of banking and finance.

It’s going to be an amazing time, and may just:

  • change the way you do your job
  • introduce you to new concepts and innovations
  • connect you to some amazing people
  • inspire you

We’ve already got 16 people coming from some great FIs and vendors, including HSBC, Industrial Credit Union, Westminster Savings Credit Union, Everything CU, Credit Union Central of BC, Creative Brand Communications, Citizens Bank of Canada, Ripple Project, Open Money, Mount Lehman Credit Union, Community Savings Credit Union, Vancity and Currency Marketing. And I just noticed Denise Wymore is planning on coming in for it.

I have no doubt that by the time September 20th and 21st arrive many more FIs and vendors will have signed up.

BCIT’s downtown campus is extremely well located, right in downtown Vancouver. If you’re coming in from out of town, you can walk there from any of Vancouver’s downtown hotels. It’s also very close to a SkyTrain station, so it’s easy to get to from almost anywhere.

All that for about $35 Canadian. So go ahead, add your name to the wiki and come on down.

See you there!

UPDATE (May 29): Thanks to Boris for adding this event to Upcoming.org!

See you in Minneapolis.

CUES ExperienceI’m off to Minneapolis tomorrow for CUES Experience.

I’m excited to see so many of my CU alum there, including Morriss Partee, Tim McAlpine, Robbie Wright, Denise Wymore, Brent Dixon, and am most excited to finally meet Ron Shevlin, Steve Williams and Christopher Stevenson in person after months of being eConnected. I hope I didn’t miss anyone – did I?

I’m presenting a Credit Union case study from Vancity, covering who we are, how we show up and how we leverage social media. Should be a good presentation.

It’s also been a fantastic way to procrastinate finishing my chapter for the new Age of Conversation. Truth be told, I’m starting to panic, it’s due in 3 days.

If you’ll be in Minneapolis, please say hi.

Now I gotta figure out how to transport fresh fruit across the US-Canada border, because my son Ivan is expecting tiny apples from a place called Minneapolis (say it aloud).