Scott Monty - Strategic Communications & Leadership Advisor

Scott Monty - Strategic Communications & Leadership Advisor

Words are difficult at a time like this. Yesterday, I wrote a post that was difficult for me. I asked for help, very directly, and I was amazed and honored and the outpouring of support that came from it.

First, here's my response on video:

But I think there's more to be said here.

First, it's clear to me that you only get out of social media what you put into it. I have always participated in my communities because I've genuinely wanted to be there, or because I've been interested in those around me. My world is improved simply by learning about and from a variety of individuals that I meet. I don't look for anything else out of the people I get to know. But I guess friendship has its privileges, for people whom I have befriended, followed, and met over the past year were the majority of the contributors to my fund.

But it's the other group - people that I've not met, or who are following me on Twitter and with whom I've either rarely or never corresponded - that made me realize the power of social media. This was a subject of a recent Managing the Gray - Friends vs. friends. It concerned real life (capital 'F') friends vs. associates (lowercase 'f''). I found out that through social media, both groups were there for me when I needed them. Wow. I just never expected that.

When I mentioned It's A Wonderful Life in the video, I really felt like George Bailey, the respected and kind-hearted man who was down on his luck when his community turned out to help him. He always did for others, without the expectation of anything in return. And when he was universally supported by the town, his brother said,
"A toast to my big brother George: The richest man in town."
That's what I feel like tonight. And I can only humbly say thank you to everyone who has stepped forward.

The Consequences
I know I'm going to be catching hell over this. I already am, by Uwe Hook and to a lesser extent, Doug Haslam. This isn't in my nature, and I wasn't simply looking for bling. This was a true need.

That said, I'm open to criticism or comments. Was this defensible? Probably. Would it qualify as a potential experiment for a brand? Mmm, maybe. If I was structuring it as a true conversational marketing project to get the attention of a brand, I probably would have done it differently. Uwe called me out on that, with good reason, I think.

The challenge now, is how to prove my worth to my community. I know, they'll say that I already have, simply by being who I am and doing what I do. But again, I'm not one to ask for things or to simply accept a hand-out. I need to do something. Whether it's to share photos, take a video of my neighbor borrowing the snowplow, or whatever (I kind of like Doug's suggestion). I'll be thinking about it, but I'd certainly appreciate your input as well.

And I'll sign off now with another quote from the movie, this time from the angel Clarence:
Remember, George: no man is a failure who has friends.

Thank you, my social media friends.

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