I’m constantly being sucked into advertisements. Sometimes it’s the fairy book lighting of an Olivia Bee Hermes Ad, other times it’s the simple, yet effective story telling and then there are times when I’m visually captured. This advertisement – Bvlgari advertisement for the new Lvcea watch – caught my eye simply because of the composition of the rose gold with the red dial. It’s such a subtle ad, and yet I was instantly reminded of those stubborn flowers that inevitably seem to appear in the harshest of conditions.
I think this is an interesting look into my personality. I pour over high fashion and its advertising and yet the rawness of a desert sheep herder is stunning and to me so much more beautiful. A part of me wishes I could be a photo journalist like Lisa Kristine. But then again, the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive. I wander through this topic because I’m still trying to figure out how I can best mash up all my interests.
Have you seen any ads, recently, that have struck you for some reason?
The workplace has become a world full of interruptions: meetings, noise, and Facebook. And even I – someone who’s always been good at switching gears between different projects quickly – find my productivity getting as chopped up along with my day.
As with most people, I’ve found ways to work through the distractions, but I still face those weird, 15-minute windows of time when I’ve finished up one task but don’t have time to start something new before a meeting or a phone call. It may not seem like much, but 15 minutes here and there add up quickly. Here are three ways I fill those potential “dead times” in my day:
Start the day with a plan. (This one is super obvious, but we all need reminding, right?) You may know what you need to do (run social media accounts, plan a campaign, create supporting collateral), but it takes a block of time to really get into your projects. If you start your day by listing out your projects, then break them down into bite-sized tasks, you’ll know which you can knock out in 15 minutes.
Collect articles to read. Whether it’s bookmarking a webpage, favoriting a tweet, or physically printing out something, keep a couple quick articles handy to read when you have a couple open minutes. This will keep you on track, and up-to-date on your industry.
Stack your meetings back-to-back. Whenever I plan a phone call or meeting, I try to schedule them adjacent to any other meetings I have scheduled for that day. That limits those dead times and also allows longer stretches of “heads down” time.
Don’t do anything. Sometimes the best thing you can do, is let yourself do nothing. And I’m not talking about mindless Buzzfeed binges, I mean real moments of meditation. (Yes, even you extroverts.) There’s a lot of benefit in just taking a moment to remove yourself from the trenches and regain some perspective.
Full disclosure: I’m not great at doing these, but I know that when I take my own advice I’m better off for it. What about you? How do you maximize your day?
One of my big focuses at work, right now, is to train our colleagues on how to use Twitter. And I’ve realized that trying to convince baby boomers of the importance of 140 character blurbs can be overwhelmed by “handles,” “hashtags” and “live tweeting”.
So I begin my training with three fundamental points, with the hope that they will motivate the trainees to figure out Twitter, as opposed to relying on my examples to get them through:
- The digital world is highly integrated with our off-line life. The more you can be aware of the digital conversations, and take part in them, the more influence you will have.
- Create a personal brand. Read my post on personal brand tips.
- Integrate social media into your current patterns. If you read news every morning, tweet the articles you find especially interesting. If you are in and out of client visits, check the Twitter app while in the elevator. Stuff like that.
Despite my awesome advice to people, I struggle with keeping on top of my social media. I question my personal brand, and I wonder if I am creating a voice worth listening to.
Last night, I was going through my notebook of random thoughts/inspirations and I found an old note to myself:
“I don’t have to have all the insights, knowledge and thoughts, I just need to add my voice to the conversation and the connections will come.”
And that’s what I’m going to do. If you have any advice that has helped you, please share!
When I started my first job, I was all excited about establishing myself online as some kind of expert, but I was uncomfortable with everything I was publishing. My blog? A fluffy mimicry of fashion blogs I followed. Twitter? Sporadic and voiceless.
I thought the frustration came from feeling like I was selfishly talking about myself all the time, but after two years I realized I hadn’t figured out my personal brand. I didn’t have any confidence in creating and sharing “me” because the person I was portraying was a façade.
A big part of my job, right now, is training others on social media and I always start my Twitter training talking about personal brand. So while I haven’t perfected my personal brand, here are three tips that have helped me:
1 – Pick a focus.
I started out, like a lot of people do, just jabberjawing about anything that came to mind. It’s a good way to get familiar with the different platforms, but a personal brand should have a focus. For example, right now, mine is branding, design and guerrilla advertising. Figure out what your unique focus.
2 – Care.
You should enjoy posting on social media and the best way to do care about the conversations you’re involved in. This is very similar to picking a focus, but you can follow topics you don’t necessarily focus on. For example, I throw a little bit of Harry Potter and literature into my conversations to add depth and it makes me excited to continue building my brand.
3 – Stop focusing on the end.
I’m a destination person, and one struggle of creating a personal brand is there is no destination. People are ambiguous and continuously changing, so a good personal brand will match that.
What other tips have you found to be helpful in building your personal brand? I want to know!
I am all packed and ready to fly to New York City! If you don’t follow me elsewhere, and therefore haven’t heard: Thanks to Diet Coke, and my obsession with social media, I was one of five winners selected to attend the Red Dress show at this spring’s New York Fashion Week.
Basically, I was gifted a sister weekend and a fashion show. I keep saying “I’m excited!”, which is true but it’s starting to get cliche. So let’s put it this way: They let me extend my return flight to Sunday so I will eat obscene amounts of pizza at obscenely late hours, I will be eating buckets of donuts, I will probably drown in Diet Coke, and I will be doing all of that with some of my favorite people in the world.
To that, I raise my Diet Coke!
If you want to read all about my trip check out my life adventures blog in a week.