* Why Did Erik Heels Contact You About Treehouse?

Because your are a GIVER! And we can prove it!

In the summer of 2003 and 2004, the perfect treehouse took shape in a four-stem maple in the back yard of a house in Acton, MA.  The treehouse was built by Erik J. Heels and his three children: Sam, Ben, and Sonja.  Shown here in all four seasons: winter, spring, summer, fall.
In the summers of 2003 and 2004, the perfect treehouse took shape in a four-stem maple in the back yard of a house in Acton, MA. The treehouse was built by Erik J. Heels and his three children: Sam, Ben, and Simon. Shown here in all four seasons: winter, spring, summer, fall.

I spent 2016 unexpectedly moving Clocktower from Maynard to West Acton. It was a very disruptive year. A very meta disruption project (with an ambitious editorial calendar) that I launched that year ended with real-life disruption. Not all of my ideas are good ones.

So I spent a chunk of 2017 on a listening tour: meeting with people old and new, including advisors, connectors, CxOs, founders, helpers, investors, and mentors. That summer, I was introduced to the excellent book “Give And Take” by Adam Grant. I couldn’t read that book and do nothing. So I decided to (re)focus on giving with no specific expectation of return by mentoring for Techstars, mentoring for MassChallenge, and founding Treehouse.

What is Treehouse?

Treehouse is – and has been called – many things, including the following:

Treehouse is a business networking group that is also very personal. Treehouse is a network of givers that empowers and inspires its members to make an impact via a series of small, invitation-only, nontraditional events.

The Treehouse name comes from the perfect treehouse that I built with my kids. And building treehouses turns out to be a good analogy for building startups.

Treehouse is of/by/for GIVERS. And GIVERS – like you – are rare. About 75% of people are MATCHERS. The rest are GIVERS and TAKERS. Very few people are invited to Treehouse, fewer become members. If you receive an invitation, then I hope that you will consider attending a Treehouse event!

Treehouse is a civic and social organization. The Treehouse mission is to help each other and our communities: by doing favors, giving back, mentorship, paying it forward, referrals, sharing our talents, and volunteering.

Treehouse is free. All events (including food and drink) are paid for by sponsors. Sponsors demonstrate the “give first” mentality that is central to Treehouse.

Treehouse is NOT trying to sell you anything. Except maybe how and why to give in a more intentional and structured way. Based on the teachings of Adam Grant.

Treehouse is NOT a cult. Although I am very passionate about it. And we have touched on issues related to various faith groups. Perhaps people of faith are more likely to be GIVERS? I’m not sure about that.

Treehouse has been called a support group for GIVERS. I’m not sure about that either. But the format of Treehouse events encourages people to be themselves, to be transparent. I have cried at Treehouse events, others have too.

Treehouse members have asked for things as simple as a housekeeper and as complicated as a cure for brain cancer. Since Treehouse members are givers, you are far more likely to get help (whether personal or professional) from Treehouse than from any other networking group. Members have gotten friends, clients, jobs, and more from Treehouse.

Treehouse has been called the blockchain of connections. Treehouse members are curated via a proprietary, trade secret process. We think we know how you were introduced into the group, and we think we know what makes you a GIVER.

Treehouse is my once-in-a-decade good idea. I joke around that I have one good idea per decade, and I’m pretty sure that Treehouse is it!

Treehouse holds 1-2 events per month. Pre-pandemic, we were 100% in person. During the (ongoing) pandemic, we pivoted to a virtual model, which allows folks from all over the country/world to join.

Treehouse is #People and #Events for #Impact. We used to say that Treehouse was #People and #Events for #Action. But we always qualified that with “meaningful action.” Since “impact” is nearly synonymous with “meaningful action,” and since many in Treehouse are from the startup community, where “impact” has special meaning, we changed the tagline.

Treehouse does not set the agenda, your passion/purpose projects set the #Impact agenda. If you read our #Impact page from bottom to top, then you can see how Treehouse has evolved over the years. Initially we focused on Adam Grant’s “Give And Take” book, then on current events, then on the passion/purpose projects of Treehouse members.

Treehouse is in its 5th year and has over 300 members. Are you a GIVER? If you were contacted about Treehouse, then we think you are a GIVER. And we hope that you will be the next Treehouse member!

It Bears Repeating

Since Treehouse members are givers, you are far more likely to get help (whether personal or professional) from Treehouse than from any other networking group.

Treehouse members know that I believe this passionately. But don’t take my word for it. Visit the Treehouse website, read the testimonials, and decide for yourself.

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