How Chris changed my life

brogan-n-paulChris Brogan and I first met when I was in Africa. We “met” through the wonderful world of blogging. I was working as a manager at a non-profit organization whose Africa headquarters were in Nairobi, Kenya. I found Chris’s blog through another long-forgotten social media authority. Chris’s blog quickly made it to the top of my daily must-read list. His easy-going manner, wide knowledge of many topics and above all, humility, drew me in. He has the ability to relate with a large number of people and make them feel like they have value. Rare indeed.

Chris found me through our mutual friend Jon Swanson. I was blogging about the quirkiness of life in the frenzied city of Nairobi. Chris enjoyed my perspectives and appreciated some of the work we went there to accomplish.

How did Chris change my life? He introduced me to the world of social media. I realized that I enjoyed that world! Management was not my cup of tea – at least when it involved directly managing 15 people, none of whom were Americans. (Cultural gaps were magnified in ways that I never expected.) So when our tour of duty was up, we returned home to Colorado – and social media became part of my job mix. Thank you Chris!

Disclosure: a small part of why I wrote this post is that I’m entering this post to try to win a free trip to #SOBCon2010 (the Successful and Outstanding Bloggers Conference in Chicago). I met Chris and Jon face-to-face at SOBCon 2009. I must say that more people than Chris changed my life as a result of the 2009 conference.


A great Christmas present for the business person in your life

tacoversmallTrust Agents by Chris Brogan & Julien Smith.

This is without a doubt the best business book that came out in 2009. It’s readable, interesting and filled with great illustrations. It is laced with application sections, so you can grab things to use in your business or organization.

Chris brings something new to the field of business communications – humility. He proves that you do not require a big ego to get the job done well. He cites many stories about how the best way to further your goals is to help someone else. What a refreshing voice!

Julien adds a lot of stimulating insights to the mix. However, since I don’t know him like I know Chris, it’s harder for me to really sift out exactly the part he had in the book’s creation.

Most books in the business category I read or skim and then sell on Amazon. This one? It stays on my shelf.

What’s the best book you added to your keeper shelf this year?