If you want to promote the professional geek ideal, there’s one thing you have to do.
I’m not talking running cons, doing events, writing books, and so forth. Those are all fine and you should do them (if not all of them). One thing you need to do if, like the motley crew here, you want to help people be professional geeks, is to be accessible.
Being accessible is indespensibe if you want to help people in their geeky career endeavors. It’s not something we think of very often because it’s a “being” as opposed to an “action.” It’s being someone people can reach and find out about is very important because . . .
- People need to reach you to call upon your expert knowledge, sublime wisdom, and other things you are, of course, too modest to claim.
- There are cons, events, chat groups, and more that you should attend – you need to be accessible to be invited.
- You need feedback on the things you are doing, both positive and critical. If people can’t reach you, how can they do it?
- Those who may want to call upon you may not always know what you do. You need a way to tell them and show them.
So, you, my fellow progeek, need to be someone people can reach. Perhaps not overly so, you may value your privacy, but people need to be able to know about you and contact you. Take control of it – and make it work the way you want.
- First, as I harp on endlessly, get a web page for yourself. Find the right domain, get up a page simply (Rapidweaver, WordPress, what have you). This lets you show who you are, get found in search engines, and funnel people towards a media you control entirely.
- Make sure you have contact information on your page – or better yet an email form that people can fill out so you can avoid spam. Those are pretty easy, and many simple apps and web packages come with them (or you can go to http://www.wufoo.com/).
- Have the right social media profiles that fit your needs – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Again, find what fits your personal tastes and need for privacy – though as usual I’ll emphasize LinkedIn is wonderful, useful, restores hair growth, and makes kittens smile.
- Be sure your web page has links to these social media profiles – it helps tie everything together so people can reach you the way they want. By choosing what to show and how to connect, you, of course, still keep control.
- In the web page/social media that “advertises your progeekery” be sure to have a section that covers what you do in that vein. Perhaps you list panels you do, books you’ve written, etc. Let people know what you do (it also helps filter out people that really don’t need to talk to you).
- Review your “accessibility plan” regularly to make sure it works for you.
If you want to change the world (you know in a positive way), in a way to help people find their interests and live their hobbies (you know, in a geeky way), make sure people can reach you.
Just make sure it’s in the way that is something that fits your needs.