I wrote this blog post in October 2013 but still has relevance today because there are far too many people who still do not see the value in social media especially when people still have the mindset to use it as an advertising tool rather than a connecting tool.
I decided to take a slightly different route as I feel it is time to give a big shout out to a fantastic group of business people who I met online using social media or met at a networking event or are one of my clients who have come together in an online community group called The Launchpad.
This blog is to share with you the importance of planting seeds and building social currency for when you need it most and how social media as a communication tool is a benefit to your business and can be the lifeblood that keeps you and your business going when your world is falling apart around you. This came home very strongly for me because of a seriously dark hour in my life that I experienced and I’m sure we all have.
As a business owner I never realised just how strong one has to be when facing life adventure challenges. You do not have the luxury of calling in sick and don’t necessarily have people you can fall back on – so you have to push yourself really hard, fight the hurt, fight the anger, put away your feelings and show up and do what is expected of you. Honour your commitments because it is the right thing to do.
Going through a life adventure experience can bring about good days and bad days as one deals with a variety of events including traumatic experiences such as death, divorce, loss, etc; one goes through the grieving process of denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance – and I need to thank the wonderful people who are helping me through my current life adventure experience. This is about people who keep you going when you feel like all hope is gone. This is about people who genuinely care about seeing the best outcome with the people they connect with and encounter. This is about people who, without social media, would never have been there for me.
Being in the UK far away from all my peeps back home, I’ve learnt just how important it is to have people who can shoulder the burden with you. If it weren’t for these dynamic people in my life, I don’t know what state I’d be in right now. Their strength, their support, their love and compassion and passion motivates me to keep going. If it weren’t for the internet and for social media I’d be a complete mess because I’m miles away from my very close support structure of friends and friends in business.
Dr James Liddell, Liz Chukwu, Joanna Ree-Taylor Engelbrecht, Carol Gerber, Sandra Roy De Greef, Clarissa Witten, Ann Mackrill, Shaza Grainger, Charne Atherton, Eugene Stalmeester, Jamiel Philander, Lucy Welsh, Gwen Kloppers, Jeanette Kelp, Robyn Lambrick, Trudie Johnston, Sharyn Driver and Bryan Allworthy. My part time assistant Lisa Flack and copywriter Jean Young. Then my dearest friends, Mia Pym, Belinda Friendland, Roxanne Liang, Sean Vester, Patrick Pollachi, Greg Flemming, Maryne Bathea, my mom Erleen Crook. Thank you all.
Everyday when I read their posts, their messages, the emails they send me, when I see them connecting, collaborating and finding ways to help one another in business, I am inspired to come up with new ideas because all I’ve ever wanted was to see small businesses working together. These amazing people are helping to remove the fear paralyzing me. They work to remove that feeling of isolation and dread, cheering me on, motivating me, inspiring me, and keeping me strong.
My tips for you if you are a business owner working alone:
- You have to have a business support group outside of your friends and family. They help you get through the challenges you face, especially in your business.
- Be open about the things that are going on in your life, especially the trauma moments because you need the support of those around you.
- Keep your mind focused on personal development stuff, listen to audio’s that inspire and motivate you, watch positive movies, attend workshops and learn something new.
- Keep all the positive testimonials and all the good things that people say about you to hand and when you are feeling like a failure, focus your attention on these posts to help keep you strong.
So for those people who may think social media is a complete waste of time and energy and don’t see the value of it for their business, I say think again. All I can say is that it saved both me and my business, if it weren’t for being able to connect with fellow business colleagues in the social media space I’d be worse off. My business colleagues have stepped in where they could, have offered assistance where they could and just been there for the emotional support. You cannot put a price on that. The ROI on this is immeasurable. The value of human support an interaction outweighs any monetary value.