Personal Development, Continuous Learning

Margaret Fontana, Rider University

I'm a firm believer in personal development for personal and career reasons.   Continuously learning new things and skills can always enhance your performance professionally and in life.   I've had experience working in many areas of media starting my career off in television as an intern and then working my way  up to producer for Emmy winning talk television shows.  I later moved into documentary programming and writing, which enabled me to move into the digital space, where content was starting to move into.

 In those years in order to learn the digital space, I put myself into the trenches of learning all about digital media by producing my own content.  Around 2008 I started my first blog called, Italian American Girl, which featured all content about growing up Italian American.   I produced a ton of content in a short time span and then began experimenting onto social media.  Myspace first, Facebook later, Twitter and Youtube were the front-runners, amazing to see that Twitter and Youtube are still the dark horses that in my opinion will win the social media race in the end.   As I moved into the digital media world, I expanded my knowledge of traditional media and began to experiment with content on every platform, which also forced me to produce for the medium.  Today when you hire someone to work in digital media, you have to ask them if they know all the platforms, and can they produce traditional to customized for each, its a very rare skill(s) and no not that many people take the time to learn the platforms, their capabilities, or their metric systems.   As I moved from producing in tradition TV to digital, I learned on my own and basically became self taught. 

My first experience with social media experts was while visiting the infamous Gary Vaynerchuk at this store in Springfield, N.J., where he was just starting to talk about how he used social media to scale his father's liquor's store to e-commerce.  Gary is now a gazillionaire, and I believe I may have made into one of his first books where they featured a whole video on line.   Point is, if you want to succeed in this space or any other industry you must continuously learn, you must take the time to learn what, why and how new technology or trends are effecting the world,  Self taught and surrounding yourself with those who are succeeding at the experiments is the only way to go.