On Social Media “Superstars” and the Scott Monty Corollary

As I write this I’m just coming back from BlogWorld Expo 2011 in Los Angeles.  Three days of more than 300 speakers, 4000 attendees and more than a few self-proclaimed “social media superstars.”

I come away from the show with a true appreciation for those industry leaders – and I’ll name them shortly – that are humble and graceful.

As I continue to travel to conferences and tradeshows – either as a speaker or attendee – I am graced with the presence of some amazing people who are role models and mentors.  Some are friends who have continued to rise in the world of social media, some I’ve observed from afar.

One in particular is Scott Monty (thus the title of this post).  As head of all social media for the Ford Motor Company Scott is constantly in demand as a speaker and an interview subject. Yet, despite his status, he continues to remain humble, accessible and a man of true grace.

He takes the time to talk to those who approach him, never shoves them aside, and tries to always be available if possible.  A man in his position doesn’t have to be that way, it’s a choice (I know because he’s told me so).

So-called social media “experts” could take a lesson from Scott Monty. Or Craig Newmark, Shel Holtz, C.C. Chapman, Peter Shankman and a myriad of other truly amazing people I’ve met and gotten to know over the last several years.

I often laugh when people say: “Oh you know (insert well-know person’s name here)?  Wow, what’s he like?”  My response is usually “he’s a normal human being.”

I have been incredibly blessed in the past several years to get to know a lot of interesting thought leaders.  But the real blessing isn’t from knowing an industry leader. It’s from learning how they handle their status – with a grace and humbleness I continue to see as a model for all in social media.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are exceptions to the rule, but for the most part, social media “superstars” are, as a group some of the best people I’ve ever had the privilege to know.

The bottom line is a simple one: we are all people, with feelings and emotions. We all have something to say that is valuable.  And, we should treat each other with respect and caring.

The rest is easy – enjoy the ride, pay it forward whenever you can, be humble and graceful whenever possible.

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