Social Media Samurai Pet Peeves: Social Media Internships

Social Media Samurai Pet Peeves: Social Media Internships

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Internships have been a part of the professional growth process for ages. As new technology and ways to do business emerge so to do the opportunities for fresh faces to show their skills off to businesses in need. In their purest form I 100% understand the role of an internship. When targeted at the right people it is a valuable lesson in work ethic, determination and humility. Unfortunately that isn’t always the case.

The reality of the business world is that many brands want to get as much out of talent for free as possible. Dangling exposure and experience to an industry newcomer has often been a successful method to lure in workers. In the case of social media, which is still a new and growing industry, many businesses are attempting to use this same internship approach  with those who have work force experience. They bank of the freshness of social media and the limited number of those that professionally grasp it as a way to get work loads lessened for nothing.

I took a stab at one of these gigs just to see if the end result would pay off. Here is my experience.

I came across a social media intern role with a respectable international media outlet. They have a solid following and have been recognized in their field with a number of awards. After doing my backward research I figured I’d go for it. The outlet is based in another country so the time difference worked out in my favor.

I was brought on quickly and then given the expected duties of my role. It was pure digital grunt work. I was given a set amount of “shares” that needed to happen for every new post that was published on the home site. While these social media shares could be spread around to various platforms, the biggest issue was  the Facebook requirement. I was directed to post their content directly to the pages of those within my network.

They wanted more eyes on their site but they essentially wanted me to spam people. Their intentions weren’t  malicious. They just didn’t understand the ethics and decorum required to operate effectively on social media. Not to mention these type of acts would negatively effect my personal brand.  I tried to work my way around this but in the end we had to part ways.

You see, I believe that quality content gets attention naturally without having to beat people over the head with it.

When people utilize interns as just cheap labor it’s a disservice to the worker and the business. Any opportunity worth having should be a mutually beneficial experience. There’s more to social media than mere tweets and Instagram posts. I can only hope more businesses come to understand that.

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Know Your Role. You Are Not My Spokesperson.

Know Your Role. You Are Not My Spokesperson.

Social Media is an amplifier. It’s an amplifier to a megaphone to people standing on soap boxes yelling hoping for reactions. Be it in business or personal, we are all trying to hear the right messages in the midst of noise, 24/7/365 digital static. I think that understanding the noise makes it easier to block out that which isn’t needed. One of the trends we need to be careful of is the self appointed spokesman syndrome.

In a nut shell, now that we all can easily tap into such a massive public audience, we feel compelled to make grand statements and assume a position of representative for others.  I’m a Black man and as such I have experiences that connect me to other Black people and other men. That doesn’t mean I can attempt to speak for all of them.

The more you attempt to speak for others beyond yourself the more specific and focused you need to make your statement.  “From my experiences” and “based on the discussions I’ve had” gives your position more realistic scope. People know this but admitting that kills the grandeur and value of whats being said.

If every “Men are dogs!!” claim was phrased “Every man I’ve dealt with is a dog.”  Said person loses the message because it now turns more focus inward instead of on the group in question.

Generalizations are what we do as a society. I get it. It’s just how we communicate but that’s why some people truly stand out from the crowd as genuine leaders, spokespeople and advocates. Just because you can talk doesn’t mean you are good at communication. The ability to speak directly to the point with focus and direction isn’t a given. That skill is what the rare few have to lead businesses to success and communities to positive expansion.

99% of us can only speak for ourselves with any true certainty. It’s tempting to turn a simple personal viewpoint into a worldwide PSA. Fight the urge my friends. Let us speak for ourselves.

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The Digital Torture of The Job Application Process

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I think it’s safe to say that most of us at one time or another has been in the following situation. You’re searching though the various job posting sites and career sections of companies and suddenly you see it. The ideal position appears and you hit that “APPLY” option. Excitement grows as you start thinking of where your career can go next but before you get too worked up you see the worst thing possible.

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Why? Why? Why!?!? Nothing stops me dead in my tracks like coming across this. With all the advancements in technology and data sharing, companies around the globe continue to use this out dated job application method. In all honesty, this may be the only time you ever access this site so being forced to create another account just to express your interest in a job is a such a frustrating exercise.

There’s a method to the madness but before we look at that let’s continue to identify the issues within the current format. So, now you’ve created an account or hopefully were able to log in via one of your social media accounts. (Side note: I’m assuming your social media presence is business friendly.)  The next level in the application maze is the “Upload Resume” page. You are told to upload your resume with the belief/hope that doing so will streamline the sharing of your career history and make this application less time-consuming and more efficient.

Unfortunately by the time you get to the next page your fears are realized as the next set of questions you get are “Please Enter Employment History”.

WHY!??!??!?! Why was it requested of me to upload a resume only to have it manually enter the same info on the next page? Chances are likely that you have a vast and detailed background so entering that takes time. For many of us this is a cold robotic process with very little human element. I’ve been on the over side of the process in having years of Human Resource experience so I’ve seen it. Many businesses still don’t get that the more you can show genuine interest and humanity, the more you get out of employees.

Hopefully should you reach the interview stage whoever you meet with actually comes across like they read your resume and did some research on you, but lets’ flip this and look at the employer side of equation.

Why would such an antiquated process be used when it could so easily be improved? Well here’s the mentally behind it. It’s one part cruel test and one part if it ain’t broke why fix it.

It’s a tried and true belief with many employers that making people go through less than pleasant situations weeds out those that aren’t “serious” and finds out “who really wants it”. The concept is that if you really want the opportunity that a few minutes spent engaged in tedious data entry won’t hurt you. Personally I don’t think that legit interest can solely be measured by enduring unnecessary action. This also leads into what I view as the true reason behind the lack of process evolution, work load reduction.  No one is viewing the applicants as “determined potential workers”. It’s just systemic process of elimination.

If an employer is genuinely looking to engage the best talent available then make an effort to appear vested in the process from the beginning. In the end a human has to review the information before an interview is to take space, so why create a digital obstacle course when you could use that space to ask real questions related to the business. Inquire about goals, likes, dislikes and ambitions that go beyond the generic “Tell me about a time you have to see great customer service.”

Businesses today know that community content is the best to share because it connects to the people. That connection isn’t limited to content alone. It’s needed in talent acquisition as well. The mutual investment in a persons success goes a long way to getting the best out of people. Many companies would do well to remember this when reviewing their hiring process.

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Support & Relief For the Philippines After Typhoon Koppu

Support & Relief For the Philippines After Typhoon Koppu

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Recently Typhoon Koppu tore into the islands of the Philippines with strong winds and flooding rain leaving the people with a number of life threatening issues to contend with. A friend of my originally from the Philippines brought this to my attention and asked for help. I think at it’s most basic level humanity is about looking out for and helping others when ever we can.

Please take a moment to check out the link below and do what you can to aid the relief situation. I know folk that deal in the charity networks and if you know of or work with other groups providing help feel free to share.

Emergency Koppu Relief

Some 100,000 Filipinos have been displaced by tropical storm Koppu, which meteorologists predict will remain life-threatening for days to come. Known locally as “Lando,” Koppu made landfall as a typhoon, causing severe floods and landslides that have knocked out power and communication lines and damaged roads and bridges. At least 12 people have died.

“UNICEF’s first priority is to ensure children are safe and protected.”—Lotta Sylwander, UNICEF Philippines

Emergency Koppu Relief

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Do You Know Your Legal Rights To Combat Revenge Porn?

Do You Know Your Legal Rights To Combat Revenge Porn?

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These are the times we live in. There’s nothing new about a bad break up or bruised ego resulting in a ugly statements and reputation bashing, but today the stakes are higher as what was once contained to people within a neighborhood or town now has global eternal reach thanks to social media. Think back to high school. What was the worst thing a person could do to you if your relationship ended on bad terms? They could attempt to lie on you and spread fictitious rumors about you. If only it was still that simple.

In our present age of sexting people of all ages are sharing explicit content at an increasing rate. Be clear I’m not here to preach against that sexting I’m actually all for it but I’m ever in support of is the sharing of said imagery when things between go cold. Known as Revenge Porn that is a vast subculture online that feeds off this material. Many folk know it by its less sinister label “HomeGrown”. Presented as non professional material, people, men mostly share images that have been released without consent. They do this and get away with it because most people don’t know what they can do or don’t want to admit to what has taken place.

In those better times you trusted someone with a side of you only to be seen by them. When that trust is violated you need to be to able to protect yourself. The link below takes you to an overview of the states that have laws on the books  against revenge porn w/ some states that have bills awaiting approval.

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**CLICK HERE FOR REVENGE PORN LAW INFO FOR YOUR STATE**

Many people simply don’t know what they’re resources are, especially the younger generations that are growing up with online access and social media as a natural component of life vs the added technological advancement it was for many of us. They are making life long decisions without thought of future implications, Educate yourself and those that matter to you.

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ETIHAD AIRWAYS WELCOMES NOMADNESS TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

ETIHAD AIRWAYS WELCOMES NOMADNESS TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

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Opportunity. It can come and go before you even realize it. In a world that is now fully connected via digital networks and social media, opportunity when recognized, can be maximized to levels never before imagined. Truth be told, last Christmas morning I nearly slept through my opportunity. As night turned into day an amazing once in a lifetime deal hit the internet. What would be affectionately referred to as #GlitchGate resulted in a wave of new travelers reserving flights to the destinations in South Africa and the United Arab Emirates. Abu Dhabi and Dubai had situated themselves as the predominant destinations for the Nomadness Travel Tribe in 2015, and 2014 hadn’t even ended yet. What made this 2015 of UAE travel so remarkable is the way the Etihad Airways embraced the upcoming crop of new faces. From honoring the initial reservations to that treatment of tribe members throughout the year, they left a mark of excellence that would not be soon forgotten by veteran and novice travelers alike.

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I am such a novice. My trip to Abu Dhabi and Dubai represented my first travel across the Atlantic. As it would turn out my randomly selected travel date put me square in the middle of the largest Nomadness group visiting to the UAE. Roughly one hundred of us set out for a memorable Labor Day Weekend courtesy of Etihad Airways. This would also turn out to be my first international Business Class experience as well. As far as flying goes,Etihad has spoiled me for life.

From the world class 7-Starservices at the Emirates Palace to the private helicopter tours, roof top parties, desert excursions and exclusive yacht meet ups, Nomadness took in all the luxury and pleasure that was available to us.

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Yet, our time wasn’t solely spent checking off the expected tourist bucket list. The people we met were all friendly, helpful and pleasant. By the end of our time in Dubai my friends and I had made a new pal from Saudi Arabia who helped us navigate the local scene including the various sukh markets around town. In the end I made a promise to myself that I would soon return as there was just too much to experience and too little time to do it all.

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For 3/4 of the year the UAE welcomed my tribe and sent us home with memories that will last a lifetime. I remember back on December 25th, as news of the travel deal made its way out of private groups and onto social media there was no shortage of naysayers as to the validity of the reservations and jokes made at the expense of the people that quickly booked trips. “They don’t even know that Abu Dhabi and Dubai are different cities.” “They’re booking flights to a place they can’t even afford to stay in.” So on and so on, yet as Nomadness always does, we exposed just how many are talking without any true knowledge of what the UAE is about.

Ten months after the initial fare deal Etihad Airways has successfully and safely handled hundreds of Nomadness travelers. The relationship would expand even further as they would come on to support our first ever #NMDN ALTERnative Travel Conference, as well as help us celebrate our 4 year anniversary with some of the best chocolate I’ve ever had in my life.

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**See All The #NMDN Images Here Nomadness Anniversary Images Here**

This was the year of the #UAETAKEOVER but rest assured it’s not the last that the cities of Abu Dhabi ad Dubai have seen of us. I see quite the future for Etihad Airways and the Nomadness Travel Tribe. #GlitchGate was clearly the gift that kept on giving.

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Entrepreneur Launches 1st E360 Conference In New York City

Entrepreneur Launches 1st E360 Conference In New York City

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Entrepreneur Media Inc looked to kick off its brand redesign with its first ever business conference E360. Within the confines of the gorgeous Hilton Midtown Hotel Entrepreneur served up a full day of business teachings, testimonials, instruction and inspiration from a wide array of successful self starters.

After morning registration and breakfast, Editorial Director Ray Hennessey opened up the day greeting the attendees and introducing Entrepreneur VP Amy Cosper. She would hold a very personal and powerful one on one with Award winning Producer, Artist and Innovator WILL.I.AM. Fielding questions from Amy and the people via Twitter, WILL.I.AM would share his personal motivations, driving forces behind his work and personal views on the current state of society and culture. One of his key points was his concern about the misuse of social media, which he calls “Dumb-Thumbing” and the under utilization of the Internet for educational purposes. One of the statements that stuck with me the most was the following.

Continue reading Entrepreneur Launches 1st E360 Conference In New York City

SAMURAI RIDES: NOMADNESS ANNIVERSARY WEEK WITH THE 2015 HYUNDAI GENESIS

SAMURAI RIDES: NOMADNESS ANNIVERSARY WEEK WITH THE 2015 HYUNDAI GENESIS

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This is a very special edition of Samurai Rides. This marks the official 1 yr anniversary of my coverage of the newest automobiles to hit the street from many of your trusted brands. It’s fitting that this anniversary coincides with the Nomadness Anniversary weekend. Much of my Samurai Ride travel links into my Nomadness duties so it’s only right to celebrate the two! This year leading into the massive weekend I was blessed with the Hyundai Genesis to make my way around the busy street of New York.

With the UN, Beyonce and most notably the Pope in town, I was about to really put the Genesis to the test. Hyundai has again succeeded in delivering style, performance and luxury in a super affordable package. The genesis rides smooth and handles amazingly on the open road or in stop-and-go rush hour traffic.

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Continue reading SAMURAI RIDES: NOMADNESS ANNIVERSARY WEEK WITH THE 2015 HYUNDAI GENESIS

Moleskine Revamps Its Line of Personal Bags

Moleskine Revamps Its Line of Personal Bags

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When you’re constantly on the move your bag is often your life support. On the day-to-day you need something that combines organization with smooth mobility. You don’t want to drag a sack around that is over bearing and cumbersom. I have to say that the Moleskine series of bags delivers consistently in this field.

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Presently an array of options for the new season, Moleskine provides a wide selection to cover all situations. Choose from classic designs like the totes especially for ladies. In addition to that they have messenger and reporter bags for your daily routine. If you need a little more room you can dive into the collection of weekender bags that can hold a change of clothing for a day or two, a lap top and more as you hit the road.

Personally I’m a weekender bag type. I keep my devices on me due to the nature of my business. It’s water repellent, durable and adaptable with a retractable shoulder holster, luggage tag and more.

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It’s not foreign for me to have to dip into a Starbucks while in another city and whip out my laptop to manage a business issue. From buses to car to planes Moleskine is as stylish as it is tough so you know that when you buy one you won’t be replacing it anytime soon.

I can go on and on about Moleskine’s quality but hey, hop over here and take a look for yourself. 

Did you cop your Anniversary Batman Items from Moleskine earlier this year?

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