Paying it forward: Mentoring and Teaching 1

“Pay it forward” has become such an overused term when it comes to “Social Media Experts” about retweeting or sharing something. But, truly, paying it forward has to do with helping others and not some Social Media douchebaggery. For those that know me well, they know that I’ve always made time to help others in any way possible. Whenever a friend has a question, I’m always there and if someone is looking for mentorship, I’ll gladly spend the time doing it. Most recently as well, spending time at the Coloft for some SEO office hours to help various startups with their projects.

Sharing what I learn daily is really important to me, because I want to pay forward what others like Greg Boser and Rand Fishkin did for me when I was breaking into the career. It’s the reason I share the knowledge and experiences at conferences or events. I’ll never say I’m an expert and you’ll never hear me say I’m one of the best, because I know I’m not, just a guy that’s sharing what he’s learned in his career. The reason I started this blog was to share my experiences as an entrepreneur and sometimes the challenges I may face.

I realize I’m a hypocrite

Yes, you might call me hypocritical for writing this after talking about not letting people pick my brain. That statement still holds true for people that don’t appreciate it. Sure, it happens, it’s the nature of life and business, I won’t let it get me down. Life is too short for that and there are so many amazing people that do deserve it. I just brush the people that are all about using others off and move on to bigger, better, and happier things.

Sharing is truly caring

Over the course of the last few months, I’ve spent countless hours of my time educating others, fielding questions and making intros for people that are current colleagues, former colleagues, or acquaintances in the industry. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve spent an hour or more with people going through the basics of SEO and constantly field emails or IMs from people with questions they may have. In my opinion, it’s important for us to do this and share our knowledge.  I really do enjoy teaching others and watching people have “ah ha” type moments because of what they learn. At the end of the day though, there is no greater feeling than having helped someone learn something new.

As I get older and more successful (and hopefully wiser!) I will try to dedicate more time to this and less to things that are a waste of time.. Until then, I’d love to keep doing this when I have time and do more trainings, some for free and some paid.

Education is an important part of life.

My friend Erik Deutsch teaches an extension course at UCLA for Communication professionals and he has asked me to guest lecture the class twice. Both times it was an amazing opportunity to share my knowledge with a room full of both young and hungry students to older professionals learning new skills. I’d love to continue sharing my knowledge in these capacities, especially with younger students looking to break into Online Marketing.

Being a mentor and dedicating time to it

Over the next few months and into 2012, I have made it a personal goal for myself to teach others and be a mentor. Yes, I’ve got a lot of my plate with eventify and overseeing my SEO consulting company, at a high level. But, I want to make room for mentoring because it is important to pay forward what others have done for me. Would be great to find one or two students looking to break into the online marketing world and teach them all the things that I’ve learned from my friends and colleagues. I’d even love to give them a chance to work on projects for Visible Factors and eventify, and provide them real life experience.

Providing an opportunity for someone to grow and succeed is important to me and I hope it is for others. If you are a student or you are looking to learn and experience new opportunities in your career, definitely feel free to reach out to me by emailing me or follow me and mention me on twitter and I’ll follow you back!

One comment on “Paying it forward: Mentoring and Teaching

  1. Reply Nancy Aug 22, 2011 12:34 pm

    Amazing article!

    I feel the same as you have expressed.

    In the upcoming weeks I too am taking a stand for improving education and forming tomorrow’s leaders TODAY!

    I’d like to talk further with you as our paths are in the same direction.

    Best Regards,

    Nancy

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