Tease over

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A few weeks ago, we had mentioned that the Pile was growing. After a much anticipated and highly speculated event, we can officially decree that we are ready to announce our newest member, Chris Hamilton!

A quick rising star who has performed at Hoboken Comedy festival, several colleges in addition to performing at all major comedy clubs in New York City. As a native New Yorker, he talks about his upbringings and the differences from present day New York City compared to New York in the 90s. With a bizarre point of view and observational humor make him a force to be reckoned with in the comedy world.

For the Pile, this means a few things. Other than our apparent presence in the community, this signifies a change as well as growth in our brand. This offers another brother in arms to take up some of the work load and opens doors to new possibilities with a fresh perspective on things. Stay tuned, because 2015 is certainly looking to be “the year of the Pile.”

Stay Piled, friends.
Top of the Bottom Pile

Building While Building…

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Build while you build.

So many times you hear that there is a specific way to do things. An order to it which has to be followed in order to obtain the success and goal you have set for yourself. If you don’t do it a certain way you will never make progress. This would make it seem that there is no room for error or improvisation, which truthfully if you think about it, goes almost against human nature. We are a variable species, with a ton of curve balls thrown our way every day. It’d be nice if everything was a 90mph pitch down the middle, but that’s not how it goes so why does your success have to follow a single trajectory?

Pioneers. Trail blazers. The purple dot in a sea of red. The ones who don’t follow the beaten path and create roads of their own often find themselves in the at the finish line with the rest of the pack and often find themselves there before the crowd. Why? They looked at their goal from all sides.

To the Pile, this is the Comedy life for us. So many people say you have to do it a certain way, you have to follow these avenues to get to the end all the while they are neglecting other important parts that they claim you need to do after you’ve mastered a certain aspect of your career. The prime example being they feel they have to be totally funny, the best they can be, killing crowds every single night effortlessly before they begin to work on the brand and relationship side of things.

Our question: Why can’t you do things at the same time?

While we perfect our acts, we’re cultivating relationships, building our brand and increasing our presence both in the community and online. This way, when the time comes and we start getting noticed, we have legs to stand on. Imagine being so funny, or so good at your job, and then when it gets the recognition, you get turned away because no one knows your work. There’s no audience or support to your terrific talent, so you get passed up again until you can draw. Build while you build.

Stay piled, friends.
Top of the Bottom Pile

Growth

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As movements tend to do, they gather up steam and snowball into something much bigger than originally anticipated. Though we started off as a threesome, we’ve decided that when you meet someone who shares a similar vision to yours, you want to work with them and that’s exactly what happened with the newest member of Top of the Bottom Pile and we are now a fierce foursome. You will however have to wait till April 1st to find out exactly who is this mysterious new member.

This is exciting for us because as many of you have read and joined in the conversation you’ve seen how many times we are met with adversity in the field. Narrow minded individuals who think there is only one path to success. Though we go off course every once in awhile, we assure you, whether following traditions or blazing our own trails, we have created avenues for ourselves to succeed so it was refreshing when we first encountered this new individual, and eventually watching our relationship grow over time, we were elated to find he felt working with us would be just as beneficial for him.

So the pile grows and with this comes more audience to reach, more goals to accomplish and a lot of work ahead. However, together we can split up this work so that no load is more overbearing on a person than any other which will keep us from getting burnt out. All the while, building toward something that we individually wanted but now as a team, the success can be shared by multiple people with the same results just with more support and organization which eventually leads to less work.

Stay piled, friends.

-<a title=”Top of The Bottom Pile” href=”http://www.topofthebottompile.com&#8221; target=”_blank”>Top of the Bottom Pile</a>

Hey, Hi, Hello

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No one’s role in life is any less or more important than the next person. We are not defined by our work role, our monetary stability, or the car we drive as all of these material things don’t fuel our daily interactions. You may have obtained them through your integrity, but in the end that’s all for naught when we are ready to leave. How you treated people and left your mark on them is what truly counts. A man can be measured by memories that creep in late night, not by his possessions, but by the length of his funeral procession.

You only get one chance to touch lives in this lifetime, so why not say ‘Hello’ and be as nice to everyone as you can? Even if your goal is business related, having a relationship cultivated, a positive one, with as many people as you can encounter can only help you later on down the road. Who do you think a person values more? Someone who walks in off the street, or even from within the company, whom just seeks the position or the person who asks about their family, their well being? Who took the extra time to connect on a personal level. My money is on the latter.

We recently encountered, as we do too often, someone who can’t seem to grasp that principal. This person didn’t take the time to say ‘Hello’, however we did and their reaction to this was cold and closed off. They even seemed to go out of their way to mock us when we were simply doing one of the most important things to being successful; building your network. He thought he brought us down a peg, but all he succeeded in doing was leaving a bad taste in our mouths, and a want to never work with him in the future.

That closed off an opportunity for him and in a business such as Comedy, or any field for that matter, opportunity is precious. This man’s integrity, or lack there of, has prevented him from exploring an avenue. By sticking to our moral code and mission statement, we will avoid poisonous people such as this man and continue to prosper.

Stay piled, friends.

Top of the Bottom Pile

Why Our Brand Building is so Important

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So many Comics get wrapped up in the idea of “I have to be brilliant before I can be a brand. I have to get so good at my craft that everyone loves me right off the bat and I become this huge success and get to live my dream.” We are doing both. People love the journey, so just posting pictures of ourselves at an Open Mic or hanging out with like minded people can do almost just as much for us as slaying a crowd.

People may find you funny but once you’re off stage, that set ends and what you shared stays there. They want to be able to connect with you to create conversation beyond the stage and they do this because they buy into you as a brand. They are interested in what you have to offer and little things like an Instagram, Twitter, or blog can keep the interaction going long after the performance.

Getting people interested and talking about you is a way to the top. Let people buy into you as you’re getting better and those people will stick to you throughout your career because that’s what it’s all about; getting people to buy into your brand — what you’re selling. Those will be the people, when your craft is perfected, saying “Well we were there since the beginning. We’ve watched you grow as an artist, we watched the foundation get built and now see what is built on top of it” and they’ll be just as valuable as the people you pick up when it’s all nice and neat and in a little bow.

Our website is our social hub for people to find out who we are, what we’re up to and if they’d like to talk with us, here’s how you can do it and meanwhile we haven’t said a thing about performing. It may sound cliche, but if it’s already built when they come, you’re seemingly one leg up on the foundation already. Lay the groundwork, and reap the benefits as you learn. You’re going to have to do it all anyway, why put a time frame on “getting perfect” first, if you can just do it all little but little as you go?

Stay piled, friends.

From,

The Direction for Your Conversation

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Last week we touched upon what it meant to give your conversation direction so you don’t wind up mired in a talk that is going nowhere. When we initiate a conversation with someone, we for the most part have an idea of why we are having it, or where we want it to go. In the social examples we’ve provided, it’s a bar setting and you’re trying to get someone you’ve fancied your eye on to see value or interest in you.

For us, it’s a more business sided reasoning. We want to alert people to our brand, to get them interested in what we’re doing in Comedy without us telling them we are Comedians. They figure out for themselves through conversation with direction, rather than “selling” it to them. This works effectively because it gives the person the illusion that they’ve discovered the information themselves, which to the human psyche/ego is more important than being bombarded with what we’re trying to do.

We may start a conversation off in public with something as simple as the weather, but soon, through asking and answering various questions, we’re directing that conversation ultimately toward us being Comedians. This is achieved by short, concise answers which slowly but surely creep toward, “Well I’m a Comedian”. The weather turns into the weather in New York, since we were in Manhattan this weekend.

Example:
“Yeah, it was brutally cold in the Manhattan this weekend.”

“What were you doing in Manhattan?”

“I had a gig.”

“Oh? You’re a performer?”

“Yes, I’m a Comedian.”

“That’s so interesting! I love Comedy, where can I see you?”

“Well, you can take my card and check my website to see all my dates.”

Instead of just beating around the bush with various, dull conversation for a huge chunk of time, or even worse, telling that person that I am a Comedian and they should come out to my show, I let them discover the information for themselves, thus seeming they are making a choice to come see me, as opposed to being sold on coming to one of the Top of the Bottom Pile shows. This demonstrates your value to that person through listening, and responding as well as achieving your objective of brand awareness.

Giving Conversation Direction…

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Continuation posts aren’t really our motive here on the Top of the Bottom Pile, however, a very good comment on last week’s installment of the blog Activity Breaking posed the question, “what about the conversation after you’ve engaged someone?”. Outside of business and relationship building, I’d say the average person encounters this hurdle the most. What to do after you’ve obtained the attention you are looking for.

Aside from just trying to kill time, every conversation you find yourself engaged in was started with the purpose of obtaining results. Last week, we used the example of approaching a person at the bar you find attractive. You want to know more about them, and maybe even ultimately take them home for some alone time. We here at the Pile don’t condone pre-marital relations unless the other person is ridiculously hot in both body and mind, but we understand this happens.

After you’ve approached this person, you’ve broken their activity using our method, you now have to keep that person engaged long enough to obtain the goal, which in this case, is dirty dumpster sex in the alley behind the bar. We’ve all encountered the scenario where we decide, possibly against our better judgment, to give someone our ear and a shot to “wow” us into buying into them as a person. They either succeed, or they crash in flames in their own awkward pauses, comments, and silences.

Always have a plan. Always approach the conversation with a clear path to the information you are looking for. First, listen. Gather up as much about the person as you can. Make the first few minutes of your exchange all about them. Their interests, what they do for a living and then wait for them to take the interest in you. When the conversation turns itself your way, which it will as you’ve given them reason to value you, answer with short “jury talk” answers. Instead of giving them all the information at once, spread it out. Not only does it give depth and bulk to the conversation, it lets your listener feel as if they are finding out the information for themselves, as opposed of having it “lectured” to them.

On top of giving the illusion that they are in control of the conversation, it’ll also ward off any negative stigmas such as bragging as they asked you, as opposed to you just giving them the information. More on this next week, folks.

Till then, Stay Piled.

Activity Breaking

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You’ve got something you want to say, a story that needs to be told and you want every ear possible to hear it. You treat life like an open book you are constantly editing. Whether it be something personal, something that needs marketing or perhaps you just enjoy listening and learning when it comes to people, you have no problem breaking down barriers and initiating someone for conversation. But are you going about it the best way possible?

For the most part, people are a lot more introvert than you. They’d rather go about their day, void of bother until they are either ready to engage or must engage. Even if you’re the most outgoing person on the planet, no one likes to feel like they’re being intruded on. However a lot of people still go about conversation in an encroaching manner hindering their possibilities for getting the most out of their discussions.

Instead of interrupting someone’s activity, try to lure them in by breaking it. If someone makes their own choice to look up from their paper or phone, you’re a lot more likely to engage that person than if you draw them in unwillingly. They feel at that point that they’ve made the decision to invest time in whatever it is you’re “selling”, because after all, what are we selling if not ourselves?

Think of it this way; you’re at the bar. You see someone across the way you find particularly attractive. No ring on their finger so they are probably single. You walk up and make a comment, “Hey, I like your beanie!” It’s an icebreaker. It certainly grabs that person’s attention, they say “thank you” and get back to their group of friends. Wouldn’t you do the same? Who is this stranger?

Now imagine that same conversation, however it started as a simple comment about the environment that you both could relate and comment on. Perhaps the air on is on a bit too strong, or the song that just came on is “your jam”. That person turns their attention your way, and they make a comment because why else would they even look if they don’t have an opinion they want to add. They either agree or disagree, and then you can continue to engage from there. That person made the choice to talk to you, they weren’t ambushed in and that’s a beautiful thing.

Stay piled, friends.

-<a title=”Top of The Bottom Pile” href=”http://www.topofthebottompile.com&#8221; target=”_blank”>Top of the Bottom Pile</a>

Share Nice

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Being nice to everyone is just as powerful a tool as any that we will present for you here in this blog. Even if not utilized in a business aspect, it can help you go far in just about any avenue in life you decide to venture down. Except maybe drug dealing, but this is not the place to be if you’re looking for an 8ball. The only drug we deal in is success and it’s a high you can’t obtain from any street Pharmacist.

A genuine niceness is a beautiful compliment to a great attitude. It’s the cherry on top, so to speak, when dealing with people in your every day ventures. As far as business goes, when establishing relationships you want to be a positive go-to for a colleague. No one is going to want to approach you with ideas for work or a project if you never seem personable or approachable. If all you have is negative input, how does that further anything?

You never know who someone is, who someone knows, or who someone is going to be. Part of being successful is hanging out with like-minded people. Sure, people with negative attitudes can hang out with one another, but I think Hitler proved pretty well where that leads. Go-getters with uplifting spirits will do just that; go up. The sky is the limit, and should you eventually fall, that is far drop. You want people there willing to catch you and soften the blow, so just be nice. You’ll be surprised how far it can get you.

They say the nice guy finishes last, but I’m willing to bet that the nice guy is standing in the same spot repeatedly taking the shots and shouldering the burden for all. I’d love to see the nice guy keep that attitude, but take steps forward for himself and not others. Include others in the journey, but have a goal set for himself in the process.

Stay piled, friends.

-<a title=”Top of The Bottom Pile” href=”http://www.topofthebottompile.com&#8221; target=”_blank”>Top of the Bottom Pile</a>

Conversation with Purpose

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A good conversation is stimulating for parties on both sides. More often than not however, we find ourselves engaged in a one sided exchange or a constant struggle for power in the moment. For example, you may have just gotten a dog and are eagerly awaiting some sort of scenario where you can drop this new information. You get to work, and your co-worker asks how your weekend was. Excited to share, you tell him or her how you just got a dog. He’s the cutest thing ever, his bark is so tiny but he tries so hard, he’s picking up on toilet training really quickly, and he’s just a new spark for your dull life.

Your colleague responds, “That’s great! My dog has been such a blessing for my family!”

Your dog? You asked about my weekend, how did we wind up on your dog? What just happened is called “1-up’ing” your friend or whomever it is you are engaged in talk with. Conversation without direction isn’t really conversation at all. Soon, you both begin jocking for position within the dialogue and it quickly becomes aimless palaver. It happens more often than not. Next time you’re talking to someone, watch how often they try to take the direction over and make it about them. It’s the reason a lot of first dates head south. One party contributes too much or not enough, and before you know it, they aren’t answering your texts.

The solution to this is simple; talk with people as opposed to them. You can find a lot more meaning, listening, responding, and contributing as opposed to being a glom when it comes to the energy of the conversation. It’s almost uncanny how the human race is predisposed by an ego to make everything about them, however, if more people took notice to this we could possibly break the habit and engage in rich discussions, as opposed to just finding out about 1 person’s dog, we could know everything about everyone’s personal life and possibly become more in tune with one another.

Stay piled, friends.

-<a title=”Top of The Bottom Pile” href=”http://www.topofthebottompile.com&#8221; target=”_blank”>Top of the Bottom Pile</a>