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Rana Florida
Rana Florida is the CEO of the Creative Class Group, managing new business development, marketing, consulting, research and global operations. The firm’s clients include BMW, Converse, Starwood, Audi, Cirque du Soleil, Kraft, IBM, Philips, Pinewood Studios, Zappos, and Johnson & Johnson to name just a few.

Rana has more than two decades of experience in corporate strategy, communications, marketing and branding. She previously directed global strategic communications for HMSHost, the world’s largest airport developer, where she led all marketing, advertising and communication efforts.

Rana has appeared as an expert on The Today Show and MSNBC and was featured on the front business page of The New York Times and she has been interviewed by CNN, The Wall Street Journal, The Globe and Mail and several others. Her writing has appeared in Fast Company and and she writes Your Start-up Life, a business advice column for the Huffington Post where she interviews successful creatives and leaders such as President Bill Clinton, First Lady Michelle Obama, sports great Andre Agassi, chef Jeans-George, Grammy award winning singer Nelly Furtado, architect Peter Marino, Governor O’Malley, fashion designer Tory Burch, ABC’s Shark Tank Mark Cuban, celebrity chef Mario Batali, CEO of Zappos Tony Hsieh, architect Zaha Hadid, author Dan Pink, CNN anchor Ali Velshi, creative director Tomas Maier, Mayor Rich Daley and others.

Rana is the author of the best-seller Upgrade, Taking Your Work and Life from Ordinary to Extraordinary.

Previously, Rana wrote Creative Spaces for HGTV and the Huffington Post, highlighting public and private spaces that epitomize creativity, innovation, and design. For almost a decade, Rana was an internationally syndicated advice columnist with her three sisters in major daily newspapers and a regular Fox News contributor for several years.

Throughout her career, Rana has lent her expertise to several boards including Airports Council International in Washington, DC, the Council for International Visitors, and The Founders Junior Council, Detroit Institute of Arts. Rana remains heavily involved in philanthropy having served as a board member for the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, a co-chair for the Design Exchange, and an Ambassador on the CAFA board, which celebrates emerging talent in the arts and fashion, and a Program Advisor for Girls E-Mentorship, whose vision is to bridge the social divide between at-risk girls and high-achieving women to motivate the next generation of leaders. She serves on the Isabella Blow Foundation Event Committee, which supports aspiring art and fashion students. As CEO of, the Creative Class group, the team supports the United Nations including the UN Habitat, the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and Girl Up, as well as numerous charitable organizations. She is also currently an advisory board member for the online retailer

Rana holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications and a MBA in marketing and management.

Rana Florida is the author of the best-selling book Upgrade, Taking Your Work and Life from Ordinary to Extraordinary.

Entries by Rana Florida

How to Run Your Business Like a Rock Star

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2014 | 9:45 AM

Richard and Rana Florida with musician Jack White at Third Man Records, Nashville.

Bands and startups have a lot in common. Sleepless nights, fueled on caffeine and adrenaline, they both have a lot at stake and...

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How to Scale Your Business, Make a Profit and Do Good (VIDEO)

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2014 | 8:38 AM

Starting with $120,000 - their entire life savings, Warby Parker has emerged as a fashion giant, selling over a million pairs of designer eyeglasses. More than that, it's made the world a better place, donating an equal number of eyeglasses to needy people in the developing world while...

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The Drum Beat of Success (VIDEO with Sheila E.)

(0) Comments | Posted September 9, 2014 | 9:48 AM

Musical legend Sheila E. was literally born into the business, yet she paid more than her share of dues at the beginning of her career, playing to empty rooms and living from gig to gig. For all that, she always followed the beat of her own drum, turning down a...

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10 Steps to Getting a Raise

(3) Comments | Posted September 1, 2014 | 11:07 AM

If you are afraid to ask for a raise, you are not alone. Most people, no matter how self-confident they are, feel quite anxious about this issue. But good work should be rewarded and most companies know that great talent is hard to come by and turn over costs are...

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The Creative Class With Legendary Music Producer Bob Ezrin (VIDEO)

(0) Comments | Posted August 26, 2014 | 9:25 AM

The Creative Class video series celebrates innovative creators across disciplines. This week features Bob Ezrin, one of the most commercially successful producers of all time. He's worked with many of the world's most important contemporary artists, including Pink Floyd, Alice Cooper, U2, Peter Gabriel, Deep Purple,...

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Taking It to the Streets -- Walking Meetings Are All the Rage

(1) Comments | Posted August 25, 2014 | 9:44 AM

Walking strategy session with Rochelle de Goias, Founder and Executive Director of GEM

It's a sitting crisis. The offices we've imprisoned ourselves in are increasing our health care costs and taking a toll on our productivity and mental health....

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Essential Rules to Being a House Guest

(0) Comments | Posted August 2, 2014 | 11:27 AM


Photo Credit: The Surflodge

August is the most popular month for summer vacations, and if you are lucky, you have some friends who will invite you to visit them at their beach house, their mountain cabin, or their lakeside get-away....

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The Creative Class with Paddle8: Tips for Launching a Successful Startup (VIDEO)

(0) Comments | Posted July 25, 2014 | 9:53 AM

In just three short years Paddle8 an innovative marketplace infusing technology and art has held hundreds auctions with over $100MM in bidding activity and raising over $25MM for charities.

They've quickly expanded their reach with members and bidders from hundreds of countries and they are also setting records with...

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The Creative Class With Peter Marino

(0) Comments | Posted July 7, 2014 | 9:13 AM

For the first time in human history our economic output turns on our creativity, which is fundamentally transforming the way we live and work. The Creative Class, as defined by Professor Richard Florida make up 40 million Americans -- over a third of our workforce --...

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Creative Entertaining: Game, Set, Match! (VIDEO)

(0) Comments | Posted June 24, 2014 | 2:53 PM

Opening day on Centre Court, Novak Djokovic goes after a return - Jon Buckle/AELTC

The world's oldest and most prestigious tennis tournament, Wimbledon kicked off this week gathering the world's all stars. While 15,000 spectators will gather in

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Creative Entertaining: Grilling the Perfect Steak (VIDEO)

(2) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 10:43 AM


Steak on the outdoor grill: It's the iconic summer meal, and doing it to perfection is an art that every man must master. This video shows him how. Old myths are shattered as he learns how to ensure a seared outside--with perfect grill...

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Going Green With Catie Marron

(2) Comments | Posted June 5, 2014 | 11:44 AM


Catie Marron is a trifecta of style, brains and influence. For openers, she is the woman who spearheaded the campaign to raise $800 million for what is arguably New York City's greatest cultural institution -- the New York Public Library. She...

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An Urban Agenda at the United Nations (VIDEO)

(0) Comments | Posted June 4, 2014 | 9:12 AM

For the first time in human history more than half the world's population is living in cities. That's more than 3 billion people with an estimated 60 million more of us moving to cities every year. By 2050, world population is projected to be 9.3 billion, of which around 70...

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Creative Entertaining: Cooking with Kids

(0) Comments | Posted June 2, 2014 | 9:10 AM


Running out of ideas for keeping your kids occupied this summer? This video shows you how to set up a cooking play date that lets kids do the creating while you stealthily impart lessons on nutrition, working together, safety in the kitchen, even...

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Top 10 Travel Tips for Entrepreneurs

(0) Comments | Posted May 28, 2014 | 1:08 PM

Whether it's to meet suppliers or vendors, to analyze the customer base, assess the competition, or attend forums and events, entrepreneurs know that in order to succeed, they must travel.

But when too much work, too many client presentations, and too many other needs all demand your attention at once,...

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How to Get Rich in Time

(2) Comments | Posted May 21, 2014 | 11:22 AM

Adapted from
Upgrade, Taking Your Work and Life From Ordinary to Extraordinary

"People chase money and forget that time is our most precious resource." --Andre Agassi

Time is more important than money and possessions. It's the...

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Creative Entertaining: It's Fiesta Time!

(0) Comments | Posted May 5, 2014 | 9:06 AM

Today is the fifth of May and that means Cinco de Mayo gatherings are in full swing. The day, to commemorate the freedom and democracy during the beginning of the American Civil War is now observed as a celebration of Mexican culture...

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5 Things Entrepreneurs Need From Their Cities

(0) Comments | Posted April 21, 2014 | 8:05 AM

Every city hopes to attract the next Facebook, Google, Instagram or Twitter. To lure such entrepreneurial startups, they follow the same route that city leaders of their grandparents' generation did -- cutting taxes, easing regulations, and in general trying to create a business-friendly climate. But what are entrepreneurs really looking...

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Simple Solutions to Serious Problems

(0) Comments | Posted April 14, 2014 | 9:04 AM


It is a mindset -- nimble, adaptive, and outside-the-universe -- that has transformed an entire city, shifting Medellin, Colombia's status from the 'World's Most Dangerous City' to the 'World's Most Innovative City.'

We were in town to attend...

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First Lady Michelle Obama Gets Down and Dirty on Leadership

(2) Comments | Posted April 2, 2014 | 9:34 AM

Photo By Susan Walsh/AP
"First lady Michelle Obama and Bancroft Elementary School student Silas Stutz, right, plant broccoli in the White House Kitchen Garden at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, April 2, 2014."


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