The power of story – National Novel Writing Month

November is National Novel Writing Month. While I may not be a novelist, I can’t ignore the community that pops up surrounding story. No matter who you are stories are what bind us together and help us get through tough times.

Originally stories were passed down in an oral tradition. Now pass we pass on tales through writing, art, pictures, movies, quilts, books, and several different methods to tell and display a story.

Each method of story telling sheds light on an aspect that could have been overlooked in previously.

The wonderful thing about the world we live in today is that we are able to have an international community through online forums, community boards, and live chats. And National Novel Writing Month is no exception. Through their site, they have created a community within communities, giving writers the option to join a region where they live. From there they can encourage (aka ‘pep talks’), swap story ideas, check on name connotation and much more. This gives the story tellers a place to hone in on the craft of storytelling.

Let’s face it, the art of telling a story is an important one. Today, in a social society, everyone has a story to tell, draw, animate, video tape, publish, write, sing, etc. But there is one thing that separates the story tellers from the screamers, is the understanding of audience and delivery.

Real story tellers know it’s not really about them. It’s about the audience, and from there, it’s how you tell your tale.

A social world has leveled the playing field, but it’s also drowned the system. Anything can be made public, for better or for worse. The important thing to remember is that it’s not for us to judge what’s the best and worst out there, because there might be a person somewhere, that finds a piece speaks to them. A story that’s not heard in one room, will be echoed and repeated in another.

Either way, all stories need to be told.

 

The Wikipedia Effect

I subscribe to the paper. The Star Tribune to be specific.

Some people might find that peculiar since I’m a digital marketer, I blog, and I pretty much live online (so much so that my husband comments about my tweets sometimes).

Despite those things, reading the newspaper is one of the highlights of my week. It’s a time I dedicate to catching up on local and national news. In fact, it’s something that I have been focusing on making time for, which is connected to the ‘Relax Project’ which is a whole other blog post.

While reading the paper over the past year, I realized that it has everything to do with actually consuming the content I’m reading. I can say that because I noticed that when I read the news online, I no longer read.

Seriously.

Continue reading The Wikipedia Effect

Social media can help leadership

Esmee - Deloitte Insights


My current reading kick has been on leadership and non-profits. There are many reasons why I think a non-profit is successful, including it’s need in the community, the volunteers, passion, available funds, etc. But ultimately, it can come down to the people running the operation. Thier passion, respect, and drive to see it through can make or break the organization in times of crisis.

Social media and great leadership have much in common. Some people might think that social media is a self serving outlet for those that are misunderstood or (my favorite) can’t get any ‘real friends’. Ouch.

Where it’s cool to hear other voices

Leaders could learn a great deal from social media. Ultimately, everyone wants:

  • a voice
  • community
  • support
  • and conversation…

However, the people that don’t recognize the community possibilities are the ones that are losing the resilience factor. They see what it can be for their sole purpose, not a big picture. Most leaders in organizations are big picture thinkers and shakers. Tag on a little tweeting and blogging to that and you have comments and conversations that support, oppose and challenge your world. This can result in high accountability and support in a time of need. They put themselves in the light voluntarily, instead of being dragged in later when the going gets tough. By being an active participant, people get to know them.

Why do you think that (good/decent) managers and owners show their faces around factories and boardrooms? They want people to know them, and what they stand for, whatever it may be.

What’s wrong with a little public accountability?

I believe that people say that Gen Y-ers spend too much time online, or don’t have ‘real life’ skills. What if the definition ‘real life’ skills, is changing… or evolving. If I learned anything in school, it’s that 1) history repeats itself and 2) that the only thing for certain is change.

When you’re trying to get business, having a presence online can really make or break you. So, you need to invest in learning how to manage yourself online. Some of the Gen Y-ers can do this, from their phones (I can’t). Others are able to at least acknowledge that it’s a reality, but choose not to participate. That’s different than ignoring or pushing social media away because you think you’re bigger than that. FYI: If you can’t be found online, you might as well not exist.

Are you prepared to communicate online?

Great leaders are constantly listening and learning- what social media has become, a living, breathing, changing thing. We now live in a perpetually ‘beta’ world. Online communities are growing, dying, reviving and thriving. It’s a cycle- it repeats, but change is kept constant.

Who knew?

How are you preparing or growing in the online world to better your company or organization? How can you see leadership evolving with the online world?

Talkin’ Brazen and Non-Profits

This week I took some time to talk with Ben from MapTechWorks. Ben gathers information and interviews to post on YouTube so other non-profits can benefit from specialists and experinced tech workers. It was a blast and check out the finished product below:

MAP TechWorks – Brazen Careerist in the Twin Cities

A Social Resume

What are people finding out about you online?

Yup, they’re doing it. Googling you. YouTube searches- it can happen. In fact, Emily Jasper over at ‘From the Gen Y Perspective’ talked about using a search engine to investigate her dates. If I wasn’t engaged, I’d be right there with her.

Show the stalkers what you want them to see – your ideas.

However, what if we could all turn that to work for us instead of against us?

Continue reading A Social Resume

Pandora and YouTube have been increasing my musical appreciation

I love music. I think it feeds the soul when you’re clueless that you’re hungry.

There is one band that’s been in my head for weeks- Mumford & Sons. I’ve been reading about their music on blogs, streaming their tunes and watching their videos on YouTube.

Social media makes this possible. Today, someone can tell me about a band on Twitter, I can then check them out on YouTube, create a channel in Pandora.com and get the latest news via RSS feed.

Enjoy.

What music have you encountered because of social media?

YouTube- why you should have a channel.

Working with non-profits and small businesses I’ve learned that some think the video sharing site YouTube is trashy.

Comments I’ve heard:

I don’t want anyone just linking to my video.

It’s unprofessional, I would never want my content available there. There’s no criteria.

All of these comments can be true in some sense. However, those reasons have made the site successful.

What about not wanting just anyone linking to your video.

And WHY NOT? (Oh, I went there with caps)

Continue reading YouTube- why you should have a channel.

How social media expands my world

Today was exceptional. Why?

Besides being employed and generally happy about being alive… I met up with Katie Schutrop for happy hour (even though Don Pablos in Roseville apparently doesn’t do that???) and some geek talk. She blogs here about her life in the Twin Cities and a load of various topics. Her latest blog she interviewed @GirlMeetsGeek on Getting social with your job search.

Katie has been busy in the Minneapolis/St. Paul! Between founding AND organizing the Young Professional Communicators – Twin Cities to keeping up with the PR and social media world, she’s an amazing young professional that you want to keep track of.

Back to me…

Why was today awesome? Well, overall it’s great to be around someone else that speaks my language. From discussing how a local chain isn’t up to social media par to how twitter can be used to enhance and create relationships, she’s all about some insight and conversation.

It’s mostly awesome because none of this would have happened without Twitter. Skeptical?

Continue reading How social media expands my world