I believe in giving back to my local community. I'm on the board of Junior Achievement, I co-founded the Save Our Parade committee and saved the Billings St Patrick's Day Parade five years ago, I helped with our Billings Swords For Kids run at the Pepsi Refresh grant #17 out of over 300, I help with the Yellowstone Highland Games and I give free presentations on online marketing and social media for a variety of organizations.
How do I give back?
I prefer to give back using my skills: public relations, marketing strategy and social media /online marketing and tend to do that for the different groups I get involved with. Most of the time that's simply because i have the most experience other times it's because I request to fill that roll.
I believe that anytime you can fill a roll that fits your work skills it's best. It's not that I'm allergic to setting up tents or manning a ticket booth, but I know that my skills are best suited lining up and doing TV and radio interviews. So try to fill in where your skills are best suited. If you're a carpenter, build things, if you're a graphic designer design things, if you are extremely organized, manage the projects there is no end to the number of roles that are available to you.
How do I benefit?
There are a lot of great benefits from giving back. I truly enjoy teaching kids in the Junior Achievement program. It's so much fun seeing the look in a kids eyes when a concept hits home. I also get a chance to hang out with some amazing people that I may not have met without getting involved.
My business has benefited because I've been able to get to know a number of the local reporters and have been interviewed on camera as the local social media and online marketing expert and provided commentary on Facebook changes and Cyber Monday. This has helped me get speaking opportunities and new clients without doing anything but giving free information.
So get out and get involved in your local community, you'll feel great, you'll meet some great people and you can build your business. Now I need to run the St Patrick's Parade lineup starts in 1/2 an hour.