The Blerd + Hackers Party

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When Social Media Runs Amuck

Amuck (adverb) – In or into a jumbled or confused state

I have to admit I’m probably one of the few people in this world that could care less about social media, but I use it everyday.  I get on Facebook, I use Twitter, and some days I even put up a post on WordPress.  I’m also the “traditional” girl who would MUCH rather talk to someone on the phone to make plans rather to text back and forth to confirm dinner.  But that’s the age we live in-we text, we e-mail, we tweet.  We rarely talk on the phone anymore or even write a letter and send it in snail mail. 

You’re wondering how social media can run amuck?  Well, I’ll tell you-at least how it did with me.  I developed a Twitter crush (I know, I know-don’t judge me).  I reached out to “Twitter Crush” (aka TC) via e-mail, and we got along famously.  Then, we “upgrading” from e-mailing to texting.  (This was CLEARLY my fault.  I totally should have called as opposed to sending the first text.  I’m falling into the trap I hate.)  So, through the midst of our texting, he fell off.  If you guys know me, you know I love closure.  But I let it go…for about a month.  Then I sent an e-mail, you know the type “Just wanted to say ‘Hi!’-make sure you’re still alive-make sure you know I’M alive” e-mails.  I know he’s still alive, and he knows I’m still alive.  I mean, we are Facebook friends, and we follow each other on Twitter.  So he’s not interested; I respect that and totally get it.  Who goes from flirting to nothing in such a short amount of time?  Ok, you’re not interested, but you can at least be cordial, right? 

See how social media can run amuck?  I was confused by his behavior.  I hate being ignored, and it pissed me off he didn’t respond to me.  I guess since our encounter was brief he felt he may not have needed to respond to me.  But as a human being and as a common courtesy, it’s not polite to ignore people.  And who knows, he may need me one day, and I’ll remember the time when I reached out to him, and he didn’t contact me back.  But then I would be the rude one and not providing a common courtesy to my fellow man.  But such is life-he should have thought about that before he ignored me.

Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

 

Witty Wednesday-Clearing the Clutter

I was all set to make today’s #WW post about Naomi Campbell and how she’s tripping over this whole Cadbury chocolate thing.  But I can sum it up in a few words: She’s crazy-it’s not that serious-they should have gotten her permission before using her likeness in the commercial.  Now that that’s out of the way…

If you’ve been a fan of this blog for awhile, you know I’m not a fan of internet dating (check out my post titled “Internet Dating is for the Birds”).  And while I don’t like internet dating, I’ve realized that I still get e-mails from 3 sites I signed up for eons ago!  Late last year, I deleted my profile from two sites, but I still kept my profile up on a few others.  While I half-way listened to my neighbor, who is a big fan of Match.com, I kept my profile up on them thinking I may change my mind one day and decide to give these sites a real chance.  After reading OneChele’s post about internet dating (go here to read it for yourself), I decided to do delete my accounts.

I’m not going to pay a price to find a date.  And I’ve always felt some type of way about that.  At least 4 days a week I get e-mails notifying me of my matches and how I can contact them; from there, I’ll select one, we’ll communicate, meet, go out, and live happily ever after…NOT!  Now I know this phenomenon has had great results for people; I’m just not one of them.  And to minimize the clutter in my inbox, I’ve decided to no longer receive e-mails from these sites.  Now all of the important stuff that I need to read will reach me, most of the junk will go to my Spam folder, and I’ve diminished the number of times I have to press the “delete” button.

What clutter do you need to clear from your life?  It can be people, things, habits, or whatever is hindering your progress.  I have some more clutter that needs to be deleted…some of it has already been deleted-they just don’t know it yet. 😉  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

Witty Wednesday-Finding Middle Ground

So, the last time I did some self-reflection, I stepped outside of my box.  But I think I stepped out too far. 

With the latest guy that I talked about and approached, we started off with some witty banter.  But…I think I got a little carried away.  All communication has ceased.  I’m going to let it ride because I don’t know him and he doesn’t me.  And while in the past I have always prided myself on people liking me and things ending when I want them to, at 29 years old, I’ve decided who really cares???  I mean, our contact was only through technological means, so it’s not that serious.  And I seriously doubt if we’ll ever meet in person.

With one of the gents I met in Atlanta, we’ve had a nice repertoire.  We’ve spoken on the phone, we’ve texted, and we’ve made plans to meet for drinks on Tuesday. 🙂  AND…he even told me, “He liked my persistence.”  So obvously with him I’m doing something right. 

I have a tendency to take things a little too personally.  My auntie “Madeline” decided to be a little messy (just kidding if you’re reading this!).  There is a young gentleman that we know that she has tried to make play matchmaker with him and me.  Besides the fact I don’t think he’s interested in me, I’ve decided this doesn’t need to be pursued, for many reasons.  While homeboy is nice to look at, he’s too immature.  Recently when I used to see him, I became cold, a little itchy with a “B” in front, and quiet (according to others), which is not me.  The last time we were around each other, I became more like the old Elle-friendly, chatty, and personable.  So I think things are going back to normal.

I say all of this to say…just be you.  Or I need to just be me.  It’s hard to switch up your actions to match what you think people will like or what they’re looking for.  If you just continue to be you, that’s what matters.  Someone likes me just the way I am, with a little sass, a little aggressiveness, and a little cheeky.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

Why Should I Get a Website?

I’ve been pondering purchasing a domain for this here blog and moving from WordPress.  I looked initially in October of last year and looked again this past week.  I have a lot of hesitations. 

1. Who is going to move my site?  If you know me, you know I’m not computer savvy.  Far from it actually.  I’m surprised I’ve been blogging for this long with no real issues.  I know someone who is a site designer but he’s so hard to get in touch with, I’m afraid I’d be setting myself up for failure.

2. Who’s going to manage my site?  Yes, I know I will, but once again I need a web developer to make the pages, keep the set up straight, and all that good stuff.

3.  What’s the REAL benefit of moving to a site?  I would still use the layout from WordPress.  So why shouldn’t I just continue to use WordPress???  Yes, I know I could have ads put on the site, but would you guys really click them and see what they were all about? 

I know there would be a few benefits.

1. I would be a bonafide business owner, because believe me, honey, I would handle it as such.  I know you have to spend money to make money, but who has that kind of time???

2. I would be official.  I get excited when I see people who have their own sites, like “Black N Bougie”,”Until I Get Married”, and “Very Smart Brothas”.  Even my blogging mentor, “Hell in a Handbag”, got her own site recently.  (Maybe that’s who I should have had this discussion with.)

I’m lost.  What do you guys think?  Do I purchase the domain or stick with good ol’ WordPress?  WordPress has been good to me.  I don’t feel limited in anyway, but maybe that’s because I haven’t tried to reach out too far.  For those of you who think that I should purchase the domain, I hope you also have about 1 or 2 referrals for web developers.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

Digital Capital Week: Tech Cocktail Party

As I went on vacation with mi familia (and having a blast I might add), my last DC Week event was the Tech Cocktail Party on Thursday, June 17.  I had a great time, was able to get reacquianted with some old friends, and make some new contacts.  The event was sponsored by Bingham Law Firm, who has offices across the country, and Zenzi Communications, which handles various levels of media marketing and was held at Lux Lounge, a premiere location in DC.

Attendees enjoyed complimentary appetizers and received a ticket to receive a drink.  To identify what sector in which you work, attendees were given nametags and stickers; choices included Developer/Designer/Engineer, Recruiter/Human Resources, Entreprenuer, Marketing/PR/Social Media, and Other.  The stickers (and the key) helped you identify who does what and helped in starting conversations with complete strangers.  The first person I met was Renee Turrell of GRT Corporation, based in Atlanta, GA.  With Renee, I came across a first for me, an electronic business card; needless to say I was impressed.  GRT specializes in logos, branding, and marketing for various small businesses and start-up companies.  A friend referred her to the events of DC Week and she was hoping to make some new connections.   Renee even gave me some tips on how I can help build my business; I will definitely be in contact with her to gain some more knowledge!  I also had the pleasure of running into Marcus Finley of Live Liberty, which handles non-profit and social action work.  Live Liberty also works on creating campaigns. Marcus hopes to work begin work on the tech start-up part of his full-time.  He heard about DC Week through a fellow tech start-up “rival”, Mike Romero.  Marcus and Mike, along with some others have a network of small tech start-ups that meet on a regular basis to network and share ideas and events that are taking place that pertain to their industry.  Marcus says there is a little friendly competition among them, but he learns some valuable information.  The second floor was where the Startup Showcase was taking place.  Approximately nine companies were highlighting the things they can do in the tech world for various investors.  (Prior to the event, attendees could complete a sign-up sheet that identified them as a business owner or an investor.)  This was another way that people could network and dialogue on ways to assist each other in the tech world.

I would have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the events of Digital Capital Week that I attended!  I was able to meet some great people, see where I fit in the tech world, and find out where I can help.  I hope you guys were able to attend some of the events, especially the events on Friday and Saturday.   If you attended any of the events during DC Week, please share your experiences.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern Girl…in the city!

Digital Capital Week: Delivering Happiness

I had the pleasure of attending Tony Hsieh’s book signing for his latest book, “Delivering Happiness”.  Frank Gruber, co-producer of Digital Capital Week, served as the moderator for the event.  During its opening week,  “Delivering Happiness” debuted at #1 on Amazon.com and at Barnes and Noble.  The book mainly discusses how to better create customer satisfaction and how his company (Zappos.com) delivers happiness.

Mr. Hsieh started a pizza making business in college with his roommate.   After graduation, the two friends started LinkExchange.  While they had fun with the company, employees were working around the clock, and it came to a point where Tony dreaded coming to work.   In 1999, LinkExchange was sold to Microsoft for $265 million.  (Yes, you read correctly-265 MILLION DOLLARS!)  He decided to sell the company as the culture went downhill.   The employees were qualified; they just were not good for the company culture.  In 2005 when Tony became the CEO of Zappos.com, he wanted to build a brand that focused on customer service.   Within 4 years, Zappos became the #1 online shoe retailer.  Tony shared that the quality of great companies are a very strong culture and having a concept of a higher purpose.  At Zappos, they have 10 core values, also known as commitable values, meaning that people can be hired or fired based on those values.  Zappos.com also looks out for its employees by providing a comprehensive benefits package and encouraging entry-level hires to work on their personal and professional growth.   It’s Mr. Hsieh’s goal that these new hires can reach senior management level within 5 years.  This young entrepreneur believes it is possible to make customers happy, employees happy, and raise a profit in a successful business.

Mr. Hsieh took the time to answer a few questions from audience members.   He was very forthright and honest with his answers as well, which was very refreshing coming from a CEO of a major company, as one attendee pointed out.  He admitted that his biggest failure was that he hired people to quickly and was slow to fire them, when those should be reversed.  He also admitted that he should have shared his core values on Day 1 instead of waiting 4 or 5 years to share that information with employees.  Another tidbit Mr. Hsieh pointed out was that he encourages his senior level management team to socialize with their employees outside of the workplace.   His experience has shown teams become more productive by increasing their out of work socializing by 10-20%.  Free copies of  “Delivering Happiness” were given to all registered guests; for a donation of $20 to LiveStrong, Mr. Hsieh would even autograph your book!  I had an enjoyable time at the this event and even live-Tweeted from my seat at George Washington University.  One quote that will stay with me for awhile was, “It’s better for co-workers to become friends than friends to become co-workers” meaning it’s not always a good business practice to hire your friend just because they are your friend.  To get more information from Mr. Hsieh purchase the book or visit the book’s site at http://www.deliveringhappinesbook.com.  I know I cannot wait to delve into my copy.  As a budding entrepreneur I would love to hear more of his suggestions on how to create and retain a successful business, be happy, and ensure your employees stay happy.   Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.