As we all know, February is Black History Month. It’s a month where we honor those who have made an impact on American culture for equal rights, those who have invented, those who have a helped others and those who have inspired everyone to be the best they can be, not only as a person of color but as a human. Last year for Black History Month, I started an online series called 28 Days Diversity where I would feature someone new everyday during the month of February for just being awesome in their own right. Even though it’s black history month, the goal for 28 Days of Diversity is to feature not just African-Americans but other minorities in the web/tech space. Also note that 28 Days of Diversity is not a popularity contest or an influencer list but a list of thought leaders in the social web sector, including entrepreneurs, bloggers, conference organizers, IT professionals and friends not ranked in any particular order who I have either met in person or followed online. Each post will include a picture, bio, two links from the selected person and this paragraph.
For 2011 I wanted to not just feature individuals but also address a topic that affects everyone. For 28 Days of Diversity 2011 each post/person will answer the question “How can we use technology to close the digital divide?” So for the next 28 days, come back to visit SocialWayne.com/tag/28daysofdiversity and 28daysofdiversity.com to see who’s on the list. For day 16, I would like to introduce to some and present to others:
Brent Leary is a crm industry analyst, advisor, author, speaker and award winning blogger. He is co-founder and Partner of CRM Essentials LLC, an Atlanta based CRM advisory firm covering tools and strategies for improving business relationships. In 2009 he co-authored Barack 2.0: Social Media Lessons for Small Business.
Recognized by InsideCRM as one of the 25 most influential industry leaders, Leary also is a past recipient of CRM Magazine’s Most Influential Leader Award. He serves on the national board of the CRM Association, on the advisory board of the University of Toronto’s CRM Center of Excellence, and on the editorial advisory board for The Atlanta Tribune. Leary writes a regular online column for Inc. magazine, and serves as Blogger-in-Residence for TheSocialCustomer.com. He blogs at BrentLeary.com, and can be found on Twitter at http://twitter.com/BrentLeary.
How can we use technology to close the digital divide?
The latest social tools and mobile technologies have dramatically lowered the cost and complexities of business creation. And because certain barriers have been lowered, more people are exploring ways to start a business – which means more people will be competing for the hearts, minds, and dollars of today’s socially-empowered customers.
Technology is evolving at an accelerated pace, which means we need to be vigilant in perpetually understanding how we can best take advantage of it. The Digital Divide can quickly shrink if we permanently embed technology into our business and personal lives. But it can expand at the speed of light today, if we turn our head for just a moment. Knowing what’s available to us today may not help us be as competitive as we need to be tomorrow. So it’s imperative to continually be up to date with how technology is changing, and how those changes impact business models, as well as customer relationships. We should also be ready, willing and able to drive those changes wherever possible.
You can follow the status of 28 Days of Diversity 2011 on http://28daysofdiversity.com, http://socialwayne.com/category/28-days-of-diversity/ and syndicated on BlackWeb 2.0.