It’s been 8’ish months since I last gave an update on the blog. Once again, I’ve been quite busy (in a good way). In fact, being busy as a consultant is always a good thing. I’ve spoken at events all over the UK, gave a keynote to an international audience in Mallorca, Spain, and traveled back to the United States to consult with two of my favorite higher education clients.
By the way, as I am constantly crafting my consultancy, here’s my latest description on what I do for a living:
I teach individuals and organizations (usually universities and colleges, but sometimes businesses too) how to communicate more effectively using digital channels. Effective communication via social media includes all things related to marketing, recruitment, student engagement/experience, career development, alumni relations, identity development, “customer” service, teaching/learning, and organizational change.
Lastly, I have to give a huge shout-out to Jisc for inviting me to speak at their annual DigiFest conference in Birmingham. Definitely one of the neatest events that I’ve ever been to…so much technology!
Thrilled to be able to announce that I am now able to work in the United Kingdom as a higher education consultant. My wife and I relocated to London and are loving life in a new country/city. Looking forward to continuing to work with clients in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Higher education in the United Kingdom is in an interesting place when it comes to social media / digital identity and I hope to continue building upon the work that I’ve been doing in North America for the past decade.
Officially "here" in the UK and ready to get consulting for the UK higher ed crowd: social media + digital identity. http://t.co/NcE7NNQyLc
Every time I make it “around the horn” to celebrate another successful year of consulting, speaking, and writing, I get a bit reflective about the journey. As if on cue, Dustin Ramsdell from the The Student Affairs Spectacular Podcast, invited me to do an interview about my endeavors.
Here’s the full audio interview where I go into detail about my journey as a student affairs professional / higher education consultant. I manage to throw in some thoughts on work/life balance as well as some insight into what my typical day is all about.
Spoiler alert: life is great, work and life aren’t a dichotomy, and it’s been 4 years since I started doing this work full-time. Thanks Dustin for giving me some time on your show.
This month has been jam-packed with speaking and consulting engagements. One of my favorite moments on this month-long set of trips was when the Chancellor of Indiana University Southeast took a picture of one of my slides during my social media / digital identity presentation.
Wow. The last post on my blog was in July. JULY! How did this happen? Well, it turns out that being a speaker/writer/consultant is a full-time job (x) 1000. According to my TripIt.com account, in 2012 I took 44 trips and was on the road for 148 days. Coming up, I plan on putting together a post that lists all of the trips/cities from last year. I’ve never traveled so much in my entire life. Whenever anyone asks me if enjoy traveling, I usually respond with “sometimes” or “it depends.” My enjoyment of travel tends to be modulated by my fellow travelers. It’s always more fun when people on flights are happy. Trust me.
One of my foci for 2013 is to be more mindful of my time when it comes to blogging. Writing is something that I did a lot of last year, but it wasn’t always on my terms. As much as I love writing my Student Affairs and Technology blog for Inside Higher Ed, sometimes, it’s tough to generate content when you’re always on the go. Additionally, I realize that many of you are coming over to this blog because of something that I shared on Twitter or because of a Google search for a variety of topics. And, when you get to the blog, you’re probably wondering, “hey, where’s the new stuff?!” Well, here’s the deal, I’m going to make a more concerted effort to post, ponder, write, question, and get my thoughts on “the page.”
Now, I realize that saying and doing are two different things. To that end, I think I’ll reduce my consumption of television programs, minimize my time on Facebook (we’ll see how that goes!), and be mindful of how writing for the love of writing energizes me. There’s always time for writing and thinking.
Slides from my social media educational session at this year’s CAMEX event in Salt Lake City, Utah. I gave a 60 minute talk about how campus stores can use social media for strategic communications and marketing. Additionally, I led more than 14 hours of social media consultation sessions with campus store representatives.
Yesterday, I ran the Cambridge 5K. It was the second 5K that I’ve done and it was the first time I had run an event that was officially timed. According to the web, the temperature for the run was 24 degrees. That’s right….it was super cold. Fortunately, I was very bundled up…unlike some of the race participants. Several runners had on some sweet costumes!
For me, running has been something that has challenged me throughout my life. When I ran track in junior high, I suffered from exercise-induced asthma. I dislocated my left knee during my first year of high school. My knees have always been cranky. However, running in my 30s has become something that I enjoy. And, my knees and lungs have not bothered me for the most part. I think I’m in better shape now than I was when I was in my 20s. Running allows for a lot of contemplative thinking, helps with stress reduction / sleep, and keeps me more physically fit then I would be if I wasn’t pounding the pavement.
Here’s the start of the Cambridge 5K race.
One of the neat aspects of the course was that it went around Harvard University:
My per mile pace for this race was just under 10 minutes at 9:57. I think I can do better. The cold weather for this run made my lungs feel pretty sore. Next time, I think I’ll be faster. Running really isn’t that complicated. The more you run, the better you feel. The better you feel, the easier it is to run. Just keep running.
Having been a consistent blogger on this site since 2004, I find myself in a bit of a conundrum. My consulting adventures, writing projects, and speaking engagements are capturing almost all of my blog time. I love writing, exploring, thinking, processing, and let’s not forget – typing. However, if you need to find me (at least for right now) I can be found here:
In Wisconsin, I did an 18-minute-long “Edge talk” on technology and community for an ACUI, SCUP, and Herman Miller sponsored event.
EDUCAUSE is the greatest technology and higher education conference of all time! This year’s conference was in Philly and I thoroughly enjoyed geeking out!
In a couple of days, I’ll be heading to Newport, Rhode Island for #NASPAtech. I’m participating in 4 sessions in 3 days. I may need Red Bull!
In November, I’m giving a keynote for a client’s company in Florida before making my way to San Diego for the NASPA Western Regional Conference where I’m giving a talk on social media, student affairs, and creating connections.