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BEAN Minneapolis Blog

Occupy a State of Mind
As the world watches the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations (and its offshoots such as Occupy Seattle, Occupy London, etc.), it begs the question: is this something that is ephemeral or is this something that represents a foundational change in how people, especially young people, want the systems...
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What is Fair?
As a web-connected, media-savvy, upwardly-mobile, globe-trotting and hoodie-wearing young professional, I am sure the question of "fairness" might not come up in your day-to-day. Ok, maybe it might pop up in the context of "it's not fair that she gets to go to Katy Perry concert." or "that latte ...
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This is An Open Call for Leaders
By now, I am sure you have noticed that BEAN has some pretty amazing people. Young professionals like you are extremely busy, and yet you give your time generously through BEAN. As shown in the BEAN 2010 Annual Report (http://www.slideshare.net/howardcwu/bean-around-the-world-2010), we gro...
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Why I Joined BEAN @ Shanghai
Guest blog by Katelyn Alldian, an intern at BEAN @ Shanghai. As a freshman at Gettysburg College, I went out on a whim and decided to sign up for Chinese 101. Three years later, I found myself sitting on a plane to Beijing to spend the next six months living in China. After spending the first m...
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Change in Latitude, Continuing Gratitude
Guest blog by Wil Woodward, chapter president of BEAN @ Greenville. I have been a pretty lucky person in the great scheme of things. I've never been hungry or homeless, and have always had my needs met. I feel fortunate for this and hope I never take it for granted. This is something I never th...
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Hashtag for Change
Do you know what a #hashtag is? It's a growingly popular to associate things you post online with some specific event, location or topic. Did you just post a picture from a BEAN networking event last night on Flickr? Add a #beanppl tag to it. Did you just post a video from a BEAN volunteering eve...
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Friends You Have Never Met
What makes someone your friend? Is it having common interests? Probably. Is it having shared experiences? Most likely. Is it because you happen to live in the city you are currently in? My guess is no. It has always been an unfortunate realty that people are stuck with making friends within a di...
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On Giving and Receiving Compliments: Be An Inspiration Award
How often do you compliment people? I don't mean ironic compliments (the "Oh, that's sooooo great." variety) or compliments used to get a date (the "You look hot eating that taco there." variety). I mean compliments given to people in genuine appreciation of what they do and who they are. When y...
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One Dollar Here, One Dollar There: On Fun & Accessible Charitable Giving for Young Professionals
As an upwardly mobile person, you are likely stuck in a weird place when it comes to charitable giving. You don't quite have the scratch write big checks to your favorite causes or for that $250 a ticket black tie fundraising gala. But you are also very interested in giving back in any way you ca...
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Reflection on the 4Ws (Work, Wealth, Web and World) from Seattle to Sapa
I recently took a vacation to sunny Northern Vietnam to escape from the upcoming snowpocalypse that was due in Seattle. Vietnam is a beautiful country that is in the middle of rapid economic development and industrialization that has become the standard story for globalization. The streets of Ha...
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Don't Be a SocStag: Step by Step Guide to Making Friends
If you are a young professional in your mid 20s, you are likely having the time of your life. You are likely living in a new city. You are traveling for work and fun. You are making decent money. You are progressing nicely at work. You are paying down student loans and saving up. You are renting ...
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BEAN, Gone Glocal
At a BEAN event the other day, a BEAN noob asked me "What is BEAN anyway?" Yes, I have never heard that question before. :) Since I started BEAN in 2003, I have literally been asked this question thousands of times. In fact, this is one of the stock questions I am always asked about, along with "...
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Lead In Front, In Middle or From Behind?
I had this interesting discussion with some friends and on Facebook yesterday about what is the best way to lead? How can a leader be effective and accomplish goals? How can a leader motivate and manage a team? I felt that there were three ways to lead and there are pros and cons for each style. ...
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Did Your Dreams Come True?
Much to my surprise tomorrow marks the ten-year anniversary of my graduation from University of Washington. Unlike the cliché uttering of "how time flies", my feeling of the last decade is a wee bit more complicated. During the last 10 years, I married my beautiful wife, started/closed a consulti...
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What Would You Do if You Are a Millionaire?
I think this is a pretty common late-night drunken question amongst friends. No, the answer really should not be "You know what I would do, man? Two chicks at the same time, man! I have always wanted to do that, and if I have a million bucks, I could probably hook that up." from "Office Space". ...
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BEAN is coming to Beijing, San Diego and Other Cities Near You!!!
As you might know, BEAN has grown leaps and bounds since we got started in 2002. From the humble beginning of our first volunteering event (sorting donated food stuff at Northwest Harvest with 5 members) and first networking event (meeting at the Capitol Club's Blue Room with 12 members) in Seatt...
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How Much Do You Care? How Much Can You Care?
Is there a limit to how much you can care? Is there a physical boundary? "Sorry, but since you live on the other block, you are on your own with that fire there." Is it limited to a specific group? "I only help people who are my height, so good luck with that genocide there." With BEAN's Th...
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8 Definitions of Friendship in the Age of Social Media
"How many friends do you have?" used to be a pretty simple question a decade ago. (Answers from 10 years ago would have been a range of numbers that's unlikely to be in the three digits.) It was almost as simple of a question as "What kind of phone do you have?" would have been a decade ago. (Ans...
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How to be Mobile without Being Flakey: A Millennial Manifesto
If you are 35 or under (and reading this), you are most likely a member of the Millennials generation. Millennials are people who were born from the mid-1970s to the early 2000s (I was born in 1978, so I am in the leading front of this pack). We have different ways of seeing the world than pre...
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The Art of Living Locally while Thinking Globally
"What is the carbon footprint of this organic Cesar Salad? Is it from a CSA farm?" "I loved the steam dosa in Hyderabad when I did a backpack trip through India." "Starbucks is great because they source fair-trade shade-grown beans from Brazil. Although my neighborhood cafe does support local...
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How to Change Yourself (and the World) for the Better in 3 Hours
What’s a typical day like for you? If you are a typical young professional white collar cubicle dweller, then your weekday might look something like this. 6am-630am Alarm. Snooze. Alarm. Snooze. 630am-7am Actually wake up and head to the gym/park to work out. 7am-8am Sort of working out, bu...
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Networking 101 for the 21st Century, aka How Not to Come Across as an Idiot
Want to get started with volunteering and networking today? Find your local chapter and join BEAN! As a young professional, a large percentage of you most likely still don't see the value of networking. You might think "I am incredibly awesome, so people should make the effort to meet ME!" Well,...
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Society = Morning Commuter Bus
I gave up my car a couple of months ago, and now I commute via bus for work. After 60 days of cramming myself everyday onto a packed King County Metro Bus #358 full of groggy people, I have come to the realization that an early morning commuter bus is the perfect microcosm for the society at lar...
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Volunteering, DOs and DON'Ts
Maybe you are finally tackling your new year's resolutions or maybe you have been giving back all along, but you are ready to head out to a volunteering project. Easy, right? I can show up whenever and do a much as I want, since you are not getting paid, right? They should be happy that you have...
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Living a Double Life: Balancing a For-Profit Job and a Nonprofit Aspiration
Is it possible to have your money cake and eat your fulfillment cake, too? Yeah, you betcha! Most people feel like pursuing growth in a for-profit career means that there is no way to find the type of fulfillment and meaning typical in a nonprofit venture. I would like to offer myself as an ex...
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BEAN There, Blog That
July, 2011 What is Fair? - July 21, 2011 June, 2011 This is An Open Call for Leaders - June 28, 2011 Why I Joined BEAN @ Shanghai - June 10, 2011 May, 2011 Changes in Latitudes, Continuing Gratitude - May 18, 2011 April, 2011 BEAN Blast: Quarterly Global Update - April 1, 20...
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Random Acts of Paying It Forward: Give a Stranger 10 Bucks Day
How would you manage your finance differently if you lost your source of income? For millions of Americans and countless others around the world, this is not a hypothetical question. You might cut back on going to the movies. You might cook meals in bulk to stretch over multiple meals. You might...
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Tweeting Alone
Like many of the smartphone and social media out there, one of the first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is to check my Facebook news stream on my trusty Blackberry. Usually, it's filled with links to fun stories, latest life updates, etc. When I tapped onto Facebook yesterday morning th...
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The Value of Laziness
What are you doing? Yes, you. You, who's reading this blog post right now on your glowing screen. Are you working right now? (Seriously, leave a comment.) Depends on your evaluation of what you are currently doing, a lot can be discerned about your attitude toward work and leisure. There is a...
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