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Human Potential in the Age of Exponential Tech

February 2014 Update: NYT Best Seller!!

February. I don’t even know where to begin! Two years of researching and writing, editing and rewriting, worrying and doubting, hustling and working, all seemed to coalesce into this one little month. It has been an utter whirlwind, a highly concentrated mix of emotions that I’m still trying to recover from.


Toronto – D3 Conference

The month started with a bang as I was invited to speak at the D3 Conference in Toronto hosted by the Association of Professional Fundraisers. It was such a great event and I spoke about some of the broader trends that are impacting the way people are using technology to influence their behaviours of contributing and engaging in various causes.  I spent the rest of the time ramping up for our book launches and running around like a crazy person trying to finalize the last little details.

New York: CNN, Rita McGrath and our American Book Launch!!

I always love going to New York, especially when I’m hyped up with a project because the city seems to be buzzing with so much energy it just amplifies everything I’m feeling in the best way possible. I landed and immediately headed out to meet with Professor Rita McGrath from Columbia University and author of “The End of Competitive Advantage” (amongst others). It was such an honor to speak with someone whose work I’ve admired for the past few years and I can’t wait to hear what she thinks about The Decoded Company.

I also participated in a fabulous round table at CNN’s offices talking about the challenges faced by women executives. The intimate conversation was so fascinating to me as it really highlighted how, despite all of our differences in career paths and life choices, the issues we faced inside traditional organizations were still the same. A special thanks to my lovely friend, Erica Dhwan, co-author of the upcoming book “Cotential”, about leveraging the power of connectional intelligence.

Another one of the reasons I love coming to New York is the high concentration of people who I adore. My wonderful friends came together and threw a party for The Decoded Company in the Holstee workspace in Brooklyn. The event was co-hosted by  Dave Radparvar (Co Founder, Holstee), Mike Radparvar (Co Founder, Holstee), Fabian Pfortmüller (Co Founder, Holstee. Co Founder, Sandbox), Niamh Hughes, (Developer Advocate, Shutterstock), Kane Sarhan (Co-Founder, Enstitute), Cameron Russell (Founder, Interrupt Magazine), Mattan Griffel (Founder & CEO, One Month), Erica Berger (Founder, Mileage Media), Allie Mahler (Lead Community Animator, Center for Social Innovation) and Chloe Shasha (Projects, Content & Curation Team, TED). I couldn’t have envisioned a more perfect evening, despite the fact that I got lost on the subway getting out there for over an HOUR. (Let’s never speak of that again.)



Toronto – Ivey Ideas Forum & The Canadian Launch Party

I returned to Toronto just in time to speak at the Ivey Ideas Forum, kicking off the 2014 Season. It was the first time that I actually saw the real book “out in the wild” and I was so excited to see people holding it in their hands I could barely restrain myself from jumping up and down.  The rest of the day flew by as I joined the rest of my co-authors for some promotional photoshoots and prepared for the big event. Hosted at the Indigo Book Store at the Manulife Center in mid-town, I was blown away to see so many people come out and support us. Having my good friend Amber MacArthur host the event made it that much more special. From family and close friends to those who I hadn’t seen in several years, I was incredibly grateful to look at at the crowd and see so many friendly faces. The event packed and it felt surreal to share with everyone the ideas that we had been putting together for two years.  Thank you so much for all of you who came out and joined us in celebrating this occasion, it meant so much to me. A special thanks goes out to my mentor, Don Tapscott, who came to support me and spoke a few words about the timeliness of The Decoded Company.



Orlando – NAIS Conference

The following morning, Jesse and I hopped on an early flight and flew down to Orlando, where I was speaking at the National Association of Independent Schools about how ArchiTechs are revolutionizing education. I have such a deep respect for educators and the challenge they face in preparing young minds for the future. It was a little rainy at first, but definitely an improvement of the insanely cold Toronto weather. We even had a few spare hours to check out the Magic Kingdom and Universal Studios where I fulfilled my dream of riding the new Harry Potter rollercoaster.

Miami – A well deserved rest

Jesse flew back to Paris to work on a client project and I continued onwards to the one thing that had kept me going throughout the whole month: the weekend getaway with some of my best friends. The wonderful weather in Miami, combined with our proximity to the ocean and simply being all together was exactly what I needed to unwind, relax, and celebrate everything that had happened. Hilariously, all of their flights were cancelled due to bad weather and so everyone stayed with me since I was extending my trip for a few extra days to meet Jay and Lee. Having all of us in the same room (thanks to the Sheraton for the free upgrade!) reminded me of the sleepovers I used to have as a kid. I’ve resolved to try and have more of these sleepovers because they were so much fun. Our group of friends tries to meet at least once a quarter, so it was also nice to leave knowing we had our next rendezvous scheduled in the calendar. I could not have planned a better way to recover from the insanity of the past few weeks and going back to the frigid tundra that was Toronto was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do. 😉

New York Times Best Seller!

As if the month could  get any crazier, I was over the moon to learn that The Decoded Company had placed on both the New York Times and USA Today best seller lists! I was actually speechless. For all of you who bought a book and supported me these past few weeks, you have my undying thanks and gratitude. Thank you so much for all of your support, I could not have done it without you. We are trying to keep the momentum going with a lot of events planned next month, so hopefully this is just the beginning of bringing the ideas in The Decoded Company to the world. I’m currently back in Toronto, ramping up for another hectic week before returning to Paris.

It looks like March is going to be just as busy so stay tuned, I have a feeling the adventure of 2014 is only now beginning.

Comments: 1

  • Anita Lee

    March 24, 2014

    Congrats on the making the NYT bestseller list Rahaf! That’s amazing! 🙂
    So excited for you. Have an amazing time in Toronto!

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