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I hated algebra, but what does that have to do with social media?

I will never remember coming home after that first day of algebra class.  My dad asked how my day was and I said, in typical teenage fashion, “algebra sucks.”  A lengthy conversation about theorems and proofs followed.  My eyes glazed over.  Are you kidding me?  I have to prove Pi is 3.14 whatever?  Yeah, right.

Those first weeks were hell.  The irony that I was a 4.0 student and couldn’t understand algebra for the life of me didn’t seem to humor my teacher or parents.  Tutors were hired.  Hours at the kitchen table were spent.  Nothing helped.  It was hopeless.  I was hopeless.

Then it clicked.

Just like that, the connections started clicking and suddenly I understood.  Pi may be defined now but someone at one time had to PROVE that to be true.  It was a process.  Establish the constants and variables.  Test different ideas.  FIND THE ANSWER!

Years later I still laugh at the mental image of that frustrated teenager crying over X and Y.  Now, I apply those skills every day but to engagement theories – how do people connect?  What do they share?  What do they think?  How do company’s participate in conversations?  How do they add value without being self-serving?

Applying social media provides the new theories I must test.  Opportunities abound so I research and look at what paths will take me to my answer.  The “answers” being the objectives I want to achieve.  The largest difference here is that instead of a defined path that takes you to that answer, it’s a bit more choose-your-own-adventure.  That’s the fun part.