Thank you – 2010

Thank you
There is no better expression in any language than thank you. It's quite a simple thing to say, and it can help you connect with others in more ways than you can imagine. I like to end the year by thanking all the people who have contributed to my growth, and the growth of this community.

Streams come and go even faster than fashions. Connections made based upon conversation and ideas exchange have greater staying power — and with a little bit of additional attention and care over time, they can develop into true relationships, including joint projects.

Staying power is an evolution, too.


It's no secret that I have a soft spot for intelligent dialogue here at Conversation Agent. This is my online home base, the place where I provide hopefully useful information for individuals who are serious about reflecting upon ideas, connecting with other people and stories, and gaining fresh perspectives with which to conduct business.

I devote time thinking about you and the challenges you are facing daily. Do meet other members of the community who have stepped forward and become active by leaving comments on that page, in the posts, and on the Facebook page.

My gratitude goes to everyone who has ever left a thoughtful comment on a post, and particularly to Brian Driggs, Gabriele Maidecchi, Eric Pratum, Patrick Prothe, Alessandra Farabegoli, Rich Becker, and Beth Harte for furthering the conversation.

A thank you goes to Arik Hanson who hosted the 2010 PR Readers’ Choice Award, and to his readers — particularly Jay Baer for the kind comment — for choosing Conversation Agent as the most thought-provoking blog.

A special thank you also goes to Elli St. George Godfrey for partnering with me and then taking the baton of #kaizenblog — we had the opportunity to help each other beyond organizing the chat, and that is the best kind of collaboration one could have.

And talking about collaboration, it sounds like Gini Dietrich and I have more than a few things in common, including our desire to share helpful resources. Thank you, Gini for your kind #followfriday post. And to all who have commented there, thank you for reading.

Thank you also to the silent majority reading this blog, and those who share these posts.

It was also lovely to meet so many conversationalists and connectors at SxSW this past year — Chris Guillebeau (who also let me be part of the conversation about his book in Philadelphia), Jonathan Fields, Colleen Wainwright, Taylor Davidson, Liz Strauss, Terry Starbucker, and many others.

Event organizers

I would be remiss if I didn't thank the organizers of FutureM, Inbound Marketing Summit, IABC Heritage Conference, Social Media Plus, and many of the panel organizers at BlogWorld, The New York Times Small Business Summit, MENG, etc. who made it possible for us to meet and share ideas and examples face to face.

Those in attendance participated with their energy and smart questions during the conversations and connecting one on one around the sessions. To me, it is about the whole experience, not just about who is in front of the room or on stage. See the links to those presentations and abstracts here.

The follow up encounters have generated amazing ideas and, in some cases, they were the starting points for future exciting projects.


A very special note of thanks goes to all clients and colleagues who have negotiated meaning with me and shared the opportunity of working together in 2010.

I've been fortunate to work with a very diverse and skilled team — Jen van der Meer, Greg Verdino, Jane Quigley, Amadeo Plaza, Charles Lim — and group, including someone who has written and talked extensively about customer conversation in the last year, Joe Jaffe.

Many others have given me the gift of co-creation with their thinking as authors — some literally sending me copies of their work, some by researching, documenting, and working to deliver thought-provoking books. For a complete list of reviews, browse the recommended books page.

[image courtesy of screanzatopo]

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0 responses to “Thank you – 2010”

  1. Thank you very much for including me, Valeria. I’m honored, truly. While I subscribe to far too many blogs, yours is one of 4 or 5 that I always give due attention to rather than skimming, pausing reading and returning later, or just skipping because the headline doesn’t catch my eye. Thank you again. I’m happy to have connected here and on Twitter.
    Now, you made me re-think my year end post… While I do not much focus on my personal blog and have been stuck in a redesign quagmire for 3+ months, I was still planning on posting a 2010 retrospective and 2011 look forward today or tomorrow, but really, that seems very Eric-focused. After reading this post, I’m questioning whether or not it should be more focused on the reader. *scratches head* I honestly don’t know. Hmm…

  2. Thank you Valeria for being an inspiration to me during the course of this year. It has been wonderful to get to know you through #kaizenblog and our own personal get togethers. You are a true tour de force. And when it comes to marketing and social media, you are “poetry in motion”!
    I wish you all the best for 2011 and look forward to seeing many great things from you over the coming months.

  3. As Eric said, above, thank *you* Valeria for not only providing intellect, insight, and inspiration, but making others feel so sincerely valued. It’s an honor being part of your community and, to once again agree with Eric, one of the reasons why yours is among the small handful of subscriptions I consider daily must-reads.
    A Conversation Agent in Training,

  4. @Eric – looking forward to seeing the results of your design work. I’m a words person, so tend to do a lot of mileage with one layout. To me, it’s very important to recognize those who make a difference and to tell them why. A habit I developed a long time ago. It keeps me honest, too.
    @Alessandra – we’re among friends.
    @Mary Ann – hope all is well with you and look forward to more conversations and projects together. You are quite a force yourself and I’ve been lucky to have had the opportunity for quiet face time. “poetry in motion” I like that a lot. Thank you.
    @Brian – you give me such a chuckle when you say that. Some people would say one of me is enough. I’m glad the interactions are helpful to you and your growing community. Way I see it, we’re inherently social beings and need each other. That’s good.

  5. You are a brave woman to write this post, but to no surprise, it’s done with such class and sophistication. I’m with Allesandra – the real thanks goes to you.You’re one of the very few bloggers I read daily who not only gets it, but provides huge value on a daily basis.
    Happy New Year! I WILL see you in 2011!

  6. The real work goes into deciding what needs to come out/not go into the blog. One thing I have always been unapologetic for is being myself, while at the same time considering that a work in progress.
    Yes, see you in 2011. Looking forward to sharing a few laughs and stories.

  7. Hi Valeria, thanks for the mention – I really enjoyed our conversations at SXSW, and I look forward to the next time (yes, I will be there again). Keep up the great work in 2011, and all the best!

  8. Valeria,
    Your blog and our conversations are always an inspiration to me. Your insights dig far (far!) below the surface of any situation, trend or challenge and that is exactly what is needed in today’s business environment.
    Today’s status quo thinking is below adequate and your thought-provoking posts, presentations and questions makes that very apparent. As well, it gives those of us who believe it too the ability to keep pushing a huge boulder up hill. Thank you for all you do for us!
    Here’s to an adventurous, thoughtful, prosperous and fun 2011.

  9. @Terry — thank you for stopping by and for coming back to SxSWfor more conversations.
    @Beth — it’s a mutual inspiration. I like it that in this new environment we’re creating, status is based upon what one shares. I’ve believed that for the good part of 10+ years now, and we’re seeing it come to fruition in some parts of the world. Success is predicted upon all of us seeing how we’re connected. Interesting times ahead for sure.

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