How did I meet John?
In 2007, having taken voluntary redundancy from the University of Manchester, I was trying to work out where next, and came across one of Barbara Sher’s books, which I found very revolutionary! I started to hunt around for something similar in the UK, and came across Scanner Central, run by John Williams, who had been on one of Barbara’s retreats (see a recent blog entry as to how he has made his ‘career path’, or should we say career hop, skip & jump, so successful). To be honest, I’m not sure whether I braved a Scanner’s Night ‘cold’, or whether I had already been chatting to @johnsw on Twitter… ah look, a previous blog entry tells me that it was the pull of a talk on social media that pulled me up to London! I have since been to several events (even made it onto the video here), and look forward to more (and wish I’d blogged about ALL the events I’ve been to..), but here’s one more from the event re: “getting yourself on TV“.
Screw Work, Let’s Play
Since taking that redundancy, I’ve been ‘playing’ with various ideas, and in training as a life coach, realised how much I wanted to recapture that sense of ‘fun’ in whatever work I did, re-injecting life with colour. I have been experimenting with various things to see where I want to take it next, and so far have discovered that I love teaching (especially when I can inspire others to think differently) – especially groups, although I enjoy one-to-one mentoring also, that I can’t stand a 9-5, that I want to work with many different people, on many different projects (all informing each other in sometimes interesting and surprising ways), and that I am a real ‘Digital Resident’ (but that I very much want to find ways to ensure that I am in charge, rather than the digital life taking over!) – really enjoying developing community and communication (hence my PhD, and why I enjoyed being a tour leader so much). For years, as I’ve played around in the online world, I have produced material that others have found helpful, so in April 2009, I decided to rethink my ‘Web Consultancy’ ‘Mydesigna’, and focus it more towards social media (I’m more into structure, content and community, rather than programming or design – although I know what looks good!), creating http://digital-fingerprint.co.uk/.
Screw Work, Let’s Play
In January 2010, John offered a few places on a 10 week teleseminar course (plus reduced entry to Scanner’s Night), which, despite an already over-heavy workload (which I want less of in the future… hence why I seized the opportunity), I decided to seize. I am looking forward to 5 weeks time, when teaching/marking comes to an end, and I can start to find some space to go back over the material, and consider where I want to develop some more thinking! The first activity we undertook was to determine our wealth dynamics profile (included as part of the course) – apparently I’m a “star”. I’m always fascinated by any kind of personality profiling (and would like to train in administering some!), whilst also determining what we were going to focus upon on this particular course – which I decided would be developing Digital Fingerprint. I plan to be back in the summer with more illustration of how I have developed since this course, but for now, it’s back to that pile of marking!! I’ll let you disappear off to read the blog for more, and order the book (recommended in today’s Sunday Times as one of the six hottest self-help books around – see image above)!
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014; second edition in process) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.