I started this post by writing a different title: “What is my Professional Social Media Persona?” However, that title induced immediate gagging, so I deleted it and gave it another go using my actual voice.
As I work towards professionalizing my approach to social media, a part of that process is going to be sitting down and writing out content in bulk so I can schedule posts several days or weeks into the future. In order to do that, I need to answer the question: What the hell am I going to talk about?
I’ve spent some time mulling that question and come away with a few principles to guide my writing:
- Write about things I know about. The internet has enough self-appointed gurus whose expertise is built on a shoddy foundation of too many YouTube videos with no real experience. I want to talk about things I actually have experience with.
- Write about things I care about. If you’re going to be known as being “about” something, make it something you actually care about.
- Avoid controversy. I’m not an arguer and I don’t enjoy conflict.
What Do I Know and Care About?
I know a lot about distributed organizations.
- How to form them and retain talent.
- How to communicate effectively in distributed organizations ranging in size from a dozen people to a couple hundred.
- How to protect company culture.
- The role of leaders in a growing distributed organization.
- How to work effectively in a remote organization.
- How to demonstrate value when working from home.
- How to coordinate complex projects and time sensitive tasks when you never see your colleagues face-to-face.
And so forth. You get the point.
I also know quite a bit about learning new skills, changing careers, and growing your career. I earned a Master’s degree, maintaining a 4.0 GPA, while working full time. I went from drill press operator to regional sales manager in a matter of six months. I then went on to develop sufficient expertise in that field to offer continuing education courses to certified professional engineers (P.E.’s). I became a junior level web developer while working full time in a completely unrelated field. I freelanced my way into the hosting industry. I’ve managed to go from an entry-level position to an executive level role in a technology startup. I’m not trying to brag, I’m just demonstrating that this is stuff I actually know a thing or two about. If you want to learn new skills, change careers, and develop in your career I have real experience doing just that in multiple industries.
The great news is that these are also both areas that I care a lot about. I think both of these areas of interest have the potential to improve the lives of a lot of people, thus good and timely advice on both of these topics from someone who has some real world experience is definitely a net positive in the world.
A thoughtful and interesting Twitter account that talked about these topics is one I would follow, and that strikes me as a pretty good indication that I’m headed in the right direction.