This is my “Thank You” to all my closest friends, colleagues, and former co-workers who supported me during my recent job search.
I am glad to say it all worked out great, but it was the journey that inspired me and confirmed my faith in my fellow humanity. You were all there for me, keeping me motivated, sending me leads, and giving me references or social media shout-outs!
You are too many folks to name: family, friends, former co-workers, and newly made friends from the wonderful universe of social networking. I have a retort to those who doubt the power of social media: In its purest form, your social network can and will change your life.
Of course, that is based on a few assumptions; foremost is that the connections you make are sincere. True social connections involve a unique meeting of minds and/or souls who share a set of common desires, goals or values. My Linkedin connections, Twitter followers, and Facebook friends are more than just a shallow collection of random folks.
Over a period of 10 wonderful weeks, I experienced South by Southwest, a social business summit in the Midwest, two great tech/social conferences in Portland and had dozens of meetings and lunches with friends and amazing folks in the business world.
There is an ongoing debate about the term “social media expert” these days. I would say, just like any other profession, that your ideas and body of work should stand on their own merits. Labels of any kind aren’t usually helpful, but we all need to have a job title.
I am proud to say I am now working as a Digital Strategist and Project Manager at an understated digital agency in downtown Portland: OakTree Digital. They are good people who do good work and deliver for their customers. I am proud to have joined their team.
I don’t profess to be an “expert” at anything, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have confidence that my field is relevant or that my contributions are valuable. I promise to listen, learn, synthesize, and give my best informed opinion to a client. That’s all I can do.
The great thing about our field is the creative aspect to it: there is more than one way to try and solve a client’s challenge. None of us – even self-proclaimed “experts” – can roll into a client’s office with a templated Powerpoint pitch about how to rock digital strategy. It’s not that simple and it’s why there are those of us who specialize in the field.
Yet we are all always learning, ideally. It is the humility of that realization that keeps me trying to improve myself. You, my network, inspire me to do that. If I haven’t personally told you this recently, I say “thank you” for your kindness, wisdom, and shining examples.