“Hey I’m convincing a client to start a weekly chat #hashtagremoved 1PM would love help getting it rolling, if you could show up & help :)”
Once I was past the initial urge to correct his appalling grammar, I’ll admit to the twinge of resentment that popped up out of nowhere. Has this person ever joined MY chat? Nope. Has he ever left a comment on my blog? Nope. Has he ever liked a Facebook post or retweeted something I’ve written? I’m pretty sure he hasn’t. He isn’t part of my little tribe.
I could have responded with something snarky like “Golly, since you’re so active in MY chats, I’ll be there with bells on! Glad to help!” Or, “Sure, where should I email the invoice for my time?” I didn’t. Restraint sucks, but if I can’t say something nice….
… Then I grumble about it to the dogs following me as I head to the kitchen and pour another cup of coffee. (They escort me everywhere. Like heading to the bathroom is more fascinating than their nap?)
Does it make me a grump to resent his request and expect him to give before he asks for a favor? Maybe, but I refuse to feel apologetic. I try to be a “pay it forward” kind of person, but there are times it just doesn’t make sense and it has nothing to do with generosity.
Every single day, often multiple times a day, I’m asked to do something for someone I don’t know. Review a product or piece of software. Give feedback on something. Share a philanthropic tweet. Invest time doing something for someone. Like many people who are extremely active on social media, people bombard me with requests. They want something without ever having given of their own time.
They want to use me as a media platform.
But here’s the rub: I’m not one. I write for three specific reasons – to gain an audience to learn with, to do my part improving the PR industry through education, and to build an audience for my book.