I want to forget about business blogging for a moment here and move the focus to something that is really more important entirely. What did you do today to help someone else? I’m not talking about in terms of your job either. What did you do TODAY to help someone outside of your comfort zone?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot. Most of what I’ve been focusing my energy on in terms of off the clock time has been personal projects, creating things and generally enjoying myself. That’s not to say that we shouldn’t have ‘me’ time but if someone came up to me today and asked what I’ve done TODAY to help someone else, I wouldn’t have an answer. That bothers me.
I do a lot of reading, writing, tweeting about business, tech, and social media. In fact I’d venture to guess that one of the top subjects on social media channels on any given day is…..social media. We’ve got these amazing sets of tools to connect with others and we seem to put in a lot of time talking about the tools themselves as well as talking to each other about how profit from them – instead of really thinking about how to leverage them for the greater good.
That’s not to say that this isn’t happening. I’ve loved Beth Kanter’s posts on how she helps non-profits through the use of social media. Mark Horvath’s Invisible People project is using the web to highlight the plight of the homeless in America. There is amazing work being done – but we need more of it, online and offline. Let’s face it, your local shelter might not necessarily need a Facebook page – they need funds and volunteers. While I think we should use our talents to help others, (which might include helping a non-profit with their social media outreach) sometimes we forget that we need to get out from behind the computers, listen to the needs of the community, and put boots on the ground. It has an impact – and let’s face it – it’s good for business.
I don’t have an answer here. Just a question. What can I (we) do that will have a measurable impact on someone else’s life (whom I know or don’t know) on a regular basis? I’ve getting some ideas together on how I can use some of my time to give back to organizations I care about, so I’m not paralyzed by indecision….just hoping to get you thinking too. What are YOU doing? I’d love your suggestions and stories, so fire away in the comments. Thanks.