Friday Features - Comments

A friend told me a few weeks ago that he follows my blog and he follows my resume tips.

Resume tips? Huh?

"You know, that video about exporting your resume," he said.

Ah, that video - necessary information passed along quick and dirty with emphasis on dirty - that video is a mess. In fact, it has been redone and will come out with other CML Job Help Center Info. Additionally that video is pretty software specific - and no I'm not posting it on my blog.

Still, my friend got me thinking - I've been looking for more of a focus for my blog -or- Do I need another blog specifically for jobs and resumes I wondered?

I started asking folks who might know or have an opinion and the general consensus for a number of reasons is "No." An additional blog is not necessary or necessarily a good idea at this time.

Hmmm... Well, I still sometimes you know have more than just a story to share, and there are some subjects of interest to job hunting or coaching or teaching that I'd like to post on.

What to do? I mulled it over for a few days and decided that I would incorporate something new into my blog. A series of tips, tricks, shortcuts, advice or whatever you'd like to call it that I want to share.

After all - It is all about me right? (Kidding)

In reality this part of my blog will be all about you - I'm calling it my Friday Feature. Why Friday Feature you might ask? Well it's Friday and this is the first in the series so there you go.

(Note: Not all Friday Features will come out on Friday, but all Friday Features will be called Friday Features.)

In today's Friday Feature I want to talk about COMMENTS, or to be more specific the importance of comments as feedback which is so integral to not only our growth and learning as individuals, but also in many cases - one's self-esteem.

I'm not suggesting that anybody is responsible for somebody else's self esteem, but I think it's fair to note that feedback certainly has an affect on that aspect of our personality.

Now reading blogs isn't about coaching, but it is about the give and take of feedback or commenting.

As Chris Brogan writes:

"It’s hard to keep writing when you feel like no one’s watching, or that they’re not engaged."

As a coach, as a leader I have found that the best way to get results, the best way to enhance improvement, the best way to get more of what you like to see your players do is to give them feedback.

And - sometimes I've found that if I didn't give that feedback that's exactly what I got in return. i.e. Nothing for nothing.

I've had a few posts of my own that I labored over for hours and I knew folks were reading because I have that little feedjit traffic feed at the bottom of my blog. What I didn't know was what people thought. I admit at first that bugged me quite a bit.

"Wow!" I thought. "Do I suck that bad?" (If you know me you know there was some serious smoke coming from my head.)

But then I had some posts that generated a lot of feedback.

"Cool!" I thought, "I must be the greatest writer ever." Not really, but I was obviously much happier, more confident.

Then I finally got it. I joined the community at NHL Connect, The National Hockey League's online fan site. I have some friends there who blog about hockey and I was always reading their blogs and watching the incredible number of comments they had, the give and take, the conversation.

Well I love the conversation. So I joined. Just for kicks I threw up a hockey blog - something I just happened to have on hand. I wasn't there to blog as much as I was there to support my friends, but I didn't want to be the guy with no content and I had the story so there you go...

Of course my Connect friends immediately commented and welcomed me, (Thanks Juice, Jess, Kiki and everyone else) but then something happened that I had never anticipated.

The next day, (and still today so they must not update very much) I got blog of the day. It's true. You can see it here. One paragraph, but enough emotion for 10,000 words. Or if the link is broken I do have a picture. (I couldn't figure out a way to show the link's progression.)

Of course I was very proud and I posted on Twitter and Facebook and called Annette and the girls and Woo Hoo for me. But how the heck did that happen and why did I feel so darn good about it?

Well it happened because my writing touched somebody, and I felt so darned good about it because that somebody, those somebodies, let me know.

I gave this plenty of thought and I decided a few things.

First, I decided that while it's cool to write to touch somebody it's not always necessary. With that though goes the fact that while you've written for yourself you are just as likely to have to comment for yourself. Not a bad thing if you expect it. So I decided not to put so much pressure on myself if a post turned out to be more about me or for me and I didn't hear very much back from my readers. Still I would have to reconsider it that was what I truly intended.

B, I decided that when I was touched by what someone wrote I would be sure to comment or even - OMG Hold your horses there young man - share that moment - that piece with others.

I know, I know - Hey, women and children first okay.

III. I went out and commented on a lot of the blogs I read regularly, not nearly as many as I would have liked, but a whole lot more than I had been. I even commented on blogs I hadn't read previously and added new friends in the process. (Thanks DrLori)

4th. I tried to share blog posts I had read with my Twitter and Facebook community and tell them why. Here is a good New Year's resolution post. Here is a good Fashion post, and here is a good post on the NHL's Winter Classic.

In every instance of sharing I received a positive comment from someone who had gone to the post from my link or some positive feedback from the writer themself.

The give and take of feedback.

So the next time you go to a blog, maybe even one that you read regularly - before you do a quick read and move on, I would ask you to pause and consider giving at least some feedback to the writer.

A quick "good job," or "I liked this about your post," can go so much further than you may ever consider possible.

If you're a blogger and you don't get a ton of comments or feedback or you're worried about lack of feedback, stop and consider why. But no matter what, with credit to Chris Brogan:

Keep trying. Persist. Try new things. Experiment. Comment elsewhere to build relationships. And don’t give up. Blogging is more fun when there are comments, but your ideas are still just as valuable just being out there.

I'm glad that you share, and I'm glad I get to share with you.


mbk said...

Nice, I'll be looking for to your Friday Feature from now on.

Julie said...

I love that you will have a Friday Feature on days other than Friday, but you are still calling it that.

It's And me too. It's a little snarky. Yay You!

I always read. Sometimes I comment. Almost always touched in some way. Sometimes it's an "ah ha!" moment. Like realizing that just like I like it when someone comments, I should comment too. And that's the whole point of your post.

Share the joy. It will come back to you.

Christa said...

Very nice feature. I always have off-topic things I don't know what to do with. I could use a few more blogs :)

goooooood girl said...

i like your blog......

Maureen said...

Good point, good post! For some reason, I've had the mindset that blogging is one-sided--people post and other people read. But I'm starting to see that it's better for everyone if there's a bit of communication and feedback. Unless, of course, it's from Anonymous!

Thanks for all the feedback you've provided to me on my blog--I really appreciate it and should be doing more of it myself!

largesse said...

Hey, Jimmer, I'm reading and I'm engaged! :-) I always enjoy your posts. Looking forward to the Friday Features.

Cat said...

See all these comments? Good for you!

I've read that commenting in your own comments helps create more of a conversation and more community-building stuff. :-)

Anonymous said...

Wow - thanks for mentioning me in your post! What you said about comments is completely on target. I know how good I felt about my blog when you, a complete stranger, had something positive to say. Thanks again!

Jim Brochowski said...

Well Cat is spot on, (as usual) with her comments so I'm making commenting in my own comments a new goal. I've done it a little in the past, but will try to be more diligent in the future. Thanks Cat for the feedback and for reading!

mbk - Started work on this week's Friday Feature on Monday.

Julie - "Share the joy. It will come back to you." Exactly!

Christa - You have energy I didn't know was possible - Maybe you should start the resume and career blog?

Maureen - It's all about the sharing. And - I think anonymous is fun to toy with - sometimes. Haven't seen him comment on your blog in a while. Hope I didn't chase him away.
Glad I could help with the feedback. Still looking for you on Twitter.

largesse - You know, you are just an awesome team player. Thank you so much - and not just for reading my blog. Really appreciate everything you do.

Lori - Great to hear from you. Your blog is so so funny. I always look forward to new stories from you.