Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Are you a Catalyst?

About two weeks ago I was involved in a discussion on Twitter with someone about blogging and awareness.

He writes a blog about AIX systems which I like but rarely get to play with any more. He tweeted to me about how management doesn’t “get” his blogging nor gives him any credit for it. My answer is, this too will pass and his time will come. Writing for a few weeks or months, even in some cases years, does not produce tangible results until some catalyst brings you into the spotlight.

I tried to point out that blogging is first and foremost a personal endeavor, unless it is your primary source of income. We went back and forth a bit and discussed some posts and ideas. His blog is well written and quite technical and documented well, but probably not for your average person in business. Having worked on many systems over the years, I appreciate when people take time to fill in the blanks of what might be missing in wikis and official documentation.

After a few messages and some others following our discussion, the bloggers readers, some are my own followers perhaps, let us know they read his blog, love it and encouraged him to continue. I also encouraged him to continue, but one person is not enough. If 4-6 people can provide you encouragement, you will be on your way.

There have been times over the last 2 years especially when I wanted to pack it all in. Drop blogging and get on to do something new. Amazingly what I needed was a sabbatical from writing. Changes in my professional and personal life obviously weighed heavily at times, but so did my blog. Sitting there idle, one post a month at times, I felt like my desire to write had flown away. Regrettably, I let my blogging lapse and in turn possibly hurt my own abilities to connect with new people, potential clients and perhaps employers.
I am not likely to become a daily blogger again, that took a lot of time that is now spent on other endeavors. 

On the other hand, I foresee having some more free time, in theory, to write more often.

Everything I read, says one should write daily to get your brain accustomed to writing no mater your mood or ideas. It may not make me a better writer, but it will help on those days when I have documentation to produce.

Maybe I was trying to convince myself about my own writing when I encouraged my AIX blogger friend to keep going. Perhaps I was just trying to help someone else that does not get the value of what they write. 

The value is in the long term benefits of people trusting your skills and ideas and encouraging others to do so.

Peers help strengthen the weaker egos from failure. We all want to see others succeed and exceed all expectations. You are, and can should be, the catalyst for your kids, spouse, friends, coworkers and in some cases even competitors.