There is a popular saying paraphrased from Gandhi that says, “be the change you want to see in the world”. I adapted this for this article to say “be the catalyst you want to see in the world”, someone who makes good things happen. This creates energy, vitality, good will and ultimately results and success.

So, are you a catalyst?

A catalyst is a “person whose talk, enthusiasm, or energy causes others to be more friendly, enthusiastic, or energetic or that precipitates an event or change”? People that can do that today have high brand value, capital and assets.

Founded in 1962, is the leading global non-profit engaged in building inclusive workplaces that foster advancement for women in business. Their work is rooted in their global research. They study the progress of women globally in leadership, diversity, talent management, entrepreneurship and work-life issues.

Catalyst’s ideas, findings and research can be applied to anyone. They study how people move, shape and shake things that positively influence others. Many are examples of ordinary people who do extraordinary things like the CNN Heroes or the Time 100 who inspire us, entertain us, challenge us and change our world.

Here are 6 things that catalysts and influencers do that you can do too!

Ignite Passion

There is now a global event, organized by volunteers, where participants are given five minutes to speak about their ideas and personal or professional passions. Five minutes to move others and ignite others to follow their passions! What are yours? Discover them, live them, share them more!

Inspire Others

Share your experiences, triumphs, challenges, successes and failures with others who may be going through difficult things. We need to know that we are not alone, unique and hopeless. is a wonderful example of how young people can inspire each other to be happier.

Innovate New Ideas and Enterprises

Every year we honor people and companies who create, design and invent new things! People making crazy ideas, brilliant ideas, wacky ideas and smart ideas into enterprises that make our lives easier, better and more fun. Check in to see Ted Talks,  the most brilliant companies,  Top 100 Small Business Champions 2012, or the Innovation Awards for 2012.

Interact With Others

Ramp up your networking and get more personal with people in-person and on-line.  Share what you are doing, believe in, and show more interest in what others are doing. Use MORE personalized social media marketing to build your reach and impact by sharing valuable content and resources.

Infuse Emotion

Infuse is an action word that describes how we can affect, instill and pervade someone or something, as in good will, good humor, good confidence. Our words and actions, how we serve and help others, the random acts of kindness, giving back, paying forward all allow us to infuse. Kindness is the most powerful way we can infuse!

Inform and Educate

The most transformational tool is education. Be a  solid source of  information and resources that inform and educate people, and help people learn. It doesn’t matter what your niche or specialty is, there is always someone who can benefit from it. Blog more, speak more, podcast more.

If you want to make more things happen in your life and in the lives of others,  be the spark, the flame, the catalyst. It begins with me and continues with we. Be it, live it, do it, love it.


Deborah Shane is Top 100 Small Business Champion 2012, Career Author, branding/media strategist, writer and speaker. She hosts her Toolbox Blog and a popular weekly Business Radio Show that has over 108K downloads! She is a regular contributor to, Monster, Blogher,, Her book Career Transition-make the shift is available on and all major book sellers. Deborah delivers smart ideas and solutions, which make her a popular go-to resource for CNN, CBS, Fox and Forbes.