Tag Archives: personal

7 Deep, Dark Secrets About Me


This is a bit off-topic for what is usually discussed on this blog, but apparently a few people want to know a bit more about me. Either that or it’s just that they know I’m a sucker and would keep the meme going.

A few weeks ago, Amybeth Hale – THE Research Goddess herself – tagged me in a post on her blog to share seven things about myself. Yesterday, one of my new favorite friends Shannon Paul did the same in a post on her blog. So, I guess that means I need to get cracking and share my stuff.

Without further ado, here are seven things you were dying to know about me. Yes, you may feel free to make fun of me for any of them.

1.  I look like I’m 18. No, that’s not a blessing. Whenever I meet a new client, I feel like they wonder if I’m the intern. My actual age? I turned the big 3-0 last month. Actually, I was very excited about turning 30.

2.  When I mention something about one of my daughters in a conversation, 90 percent of people say something along the lines of “wait, you have a kid?!” I reply that I have two. The next question is, “how old are you?!” (See first bullet above). My girls – Madelyn and Piper – are amazing kids and they’re beautiful. I’m not just saying that because I’m biased. See for yourself. I make pretty babies.


3.  I auditioned for American Idol last year. It was for the season that David Cook won (this year). I did it on a whim. I would be too old to audition the next year. The audition city was close enough to drive and I had friends there I could stay with for free. My wife and oldest daughter (Piper wasn’t around yet) were in Wisconsin at her mom and dad’s house. So I threw some stuff in the car and headed to Charleston, SC. Yes, I can carry a tune – just ask Libby Krah. No, I didn’t make it to see Randy, Paula and Simon. But I had an absolute blast. If you want to know more about the crazy audition process, just ask.

4.  I tell corny jokes and one-liners within the context of conversations. They get a good laugh about 75-80 percent of the time. That’s not a bad percentage, right? The other 20-25 percent fall flat on their faces. But that doesn’t stop me from dropping another one. Hey, laughter is good for the soul, I say. Besides, if two outta three ain’t bad, then three outta four must be good.

5.  I can dance my white, little butt off, folks. You’d be surprised how much rhythm I’ve got in this body. I was even in a hip-hop dance group for a year when I was 18. No, there is no video of such performances. This was way before the days of YouTube, Facebook and other such social web things. No one was carrying Flip Minos around back then.

6.  My favorite movie is The Shawshank Redemption because the real hero of that movie is the single most important human emotion in my opinion – hope. That and I love when Morgan Freeman’s character tells Andy Dufresne that people maybe call him “Red” because he’s Irish.

7.  I’m a ridiculously positive person.  I’ve been told my energy is contagious. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or if it can be annoying, but consider yourself warned. I wake up on the bright side.

There you have it. I guess not all of those are deep, dark secrets. But a few of them do have some potential for embarrassment.

Now, as the “rules” state, I’m tagging seven other people to participate in the next round. You were chosen because I think you’re interesting and others would enjoy knowing more about you. There are many folks I find interesting, BUT I did have to narrow it down to seven.

Sonny Gill, Beth Harte, Scott Meis, Taylor Graves,

Lara Kretler, Mark Tosczak, Lisa Hoffmann

Here are the rules I followed, as shared by Shannon and Amybeth:

  • Link your original tagger(s) and list these rules in your post.
  • Share seven facts about yourself in the post.
  • Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names and the links to their blogs.
  • Let them know they’ve been tagged

Again, sorry for the departure and I hope this hasn’t bored you silly. Look at it this way. When we meet in person, you’ve got some great fodder for conversation in the hopper.

*First image by Audrey Ahern. Image of the Mullen girls by Sarah Hahne.

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My Verdict on Keeping Personal and Professional Separate

A couple weeks ago, I asked a question. Should we keep personal and professional separate when it comes to social networking? Specifically, I had been struggling with what to do about facebook. I’ve always used it as a place for friends and never used it to connect with professional contacts. I limited that to LinkedIn and twitter.

After getting a lot of comments (for a newish blog, at least) on the post and a ton of responses to the similar question I asked on LinkedIn, it’s obvious that others are talking about this, too. They ranged from “No way should you put them together” to the opposite end of the spectrum. Some people were middle of the road.

The Verdict
I’m going to open up my facebook to communicate with both personal and professional folks alike.

What did it for me? I was reminded firsthand of the benefits of keeping connected with professionals beyond just LinkedIn and twitter last week. A former coworker, Mark, who I’m really good friends with was visiting Chicago. Another former coworker, Rakesh, moved to Chicago about two years ago with his wife. We hadn’t really stayed in touch.

My friend asked if I had Rakesh’s mobile number. I didn’t. But I remembered that we are still connected on facebook. I sent Rakesh a message to let him know that Mark was in the Windy City and wanted to get together. I also gave him Mark’s mobile number. Rakesh got the message and gave Mark a call so they could hang out.

So what’s the big deal? It’s a great picture of the power of connections – about being able to bring the right people together, regardless of the reason. Whether it’s helping two guys connect for a beer in Wrigleyville or helping someone find a PR pro well versed in social media who happens to live in Ohio, it would be beneficial to me and the community at large to be able to come through and help from time to time.

Don’t worry, though. I’ve updated all my privacy settings so family and friends can see my kids without barraging professional contacts with too many photos from our weekend at the beach. As beautiful as my kids are, it’s scientifically proven that you can only take so much of seeing other people’s kids before it gets nauseating.

So, want to connect on facebook? If so, you can find my profile here. And feel free to connect with me at other places here.

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Should We Keep Professional and Personal Separate in Social Networking

When it comes to social networking utilities, should there be a line in the sand on whether it’s for personal contacts or professional connections? That’s what I’ve been struggling with of late.

Maybe I should share with you what first made this question come to mind for me. When I joined facebook a while back, I “friended” a lot of coworkers, some of whom I am friends with outside of work and some of whom I am acquaintances with at work.

About a month ago, one of my coworkers that I’m acquaintances with had a major event happen in her personal life, which I found out about through facebook. She’s nice. We say “hi” to each other. But this is something I don’t believe she would have told me in passing. We’re not close enough. Now, you could say that she shared it on facebook, so she must not have minded telling everyone. But I still felt weird finding out about it that way.

I also had a couple clients friend me recently on facebook and it made me a little uneasy. Not that I put things on there that are crazy and kooky. Just the normal stuff like photos of my beautiful family, friends writing funny things on my wall, etc. But what if one of those funny groups I joined to laugh about with friends isn’t seen as funny by a client. Things that people know about in our personal lives that they wouldn’t have known about pre-social networking can color their opinions of us in our professional lives.

That’s my concern. So I decided to save facebook for my personal contacts and Linkedin and twitter for my professional connections. But I’ve noticed lately that a lot of fellow bloggers whom I respect have links to their facebook pages on their blogs. Folks like Chris Brogan, Mack Collier and Lara Kretler.

Should I rethink my assessment? Am I going about it the wrong way? Am I missing out on great exchange by not opening up facebook to professional contacts as well? What do you think?

(Click here to read My Verdict on Keeping Professional and Personal Separate.)

*image credit – facebook.com

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