Byrdie Franco-Rocha

Each day is an opportunity to be creative, exercise experience and learn something new. I strive to improve myself, my projects and my relationships along the way.

Small Biz owners in #Houston –Attend Mi

Small Biz owners in #Houston –Attend Minority-Owned Business Summit– Nov. 17 –#VZWHoustonSMB http://ow.ly/TP1Db

Why I support Immigration Reform

This week I am taking part in LATISM’s Top Blogueras Retreat. Latinos in Tech, Innovation and Social Media organizes this annual event that kicked off last year as an effort to empower the Latino communities across the nation and Latin America and give a voice to the voiceless. It achieves this by sponsoring a two-day leadership-training workshop that in the past has included a trip to the White House and this year, a trip to the United Nations for 50-100 of the online communities top bloggers. I am an organizer and director with LATISM and also a blogger at BSoFly.com.

As part of this movement, we are sharing our immigration story. Here is mine. Well, a small piece of it anyway.

This is one of the hardest things to write or talk about. I hope that one day very soon, it will get easier.  

My immigration story is difficult to share because it is not my story to tell.

But, what I can share is that I am the daughter of an immigrant and a U.S. citizen. I am somewhere in the middle of a first and second generation Mexican-American. I was born on the Texas side of a small town on the U.S/Mexico border.  But, I could have easily been born on the Mexican side. I have a very supportive family so if I was born in Mexico, I’m sure I would have probably gone through the proper path to become a legal U.S. Citizen.  But, I was fortunate.

Many are not so fortunate. I know several amazing people that I love and have helped shape and motivate me to be who I am today and aspire to continue to improve. They inspire me to improve my community and really help me appreciate my opportunities as a U.S. Citizen.

I am the first in my family to go to college. I now have a Master’s degree. I am involved in my community and volunteer almost every week to give a voice to my community. I work and pay my taxes. Actually, many of those I speak for today, work and pay taxes. That is why I write today. To share the inspiration and support my undocumented community has given me. Imagine how many others have been positively affected by the voiceless. Countless.

I support Immigration Reform. 

Elianne Ramos (@ergeekgoddess), 1st Latina to Join World Brand Congress International Advisory Council 2013

Very proud my my #LATISM colleague and mentor, Elianne Ramos AKA @ERGeekGoddess for not just being acknowledged on a global scale as a brilliant marketer, but for also taking her perspective as a Latina to the forefront. World Brand Congress International Advisory Board Council will meet in India this October. Read her blog to learn more.

Elianne Ramos aka ERGeekGoddess

WBC_Logo

Baltimore, MD – April 24, 2013 – Speak Hispanic Communications is proud to announce that its Principal, Elianne Ramos, has been invited to join the World Brand Congress International Advisory Council 2013. An international meeting place for leaders in Marketing and Communications, World Brand Congress will be held on October 21st  to the 23rd, 2013 at the Taj Lands End in Mumbai, India. This year’s theme will be “Sustainable Brands”, and how Social and Environmental Responsibility has been a key issue for business.

As the first U.S. Latina ever invited to join their Advisory Council, Ms. Ramos will join a select group of marketing and branding elite from every sector and every continent to serve as a nominating member for the Global Brand Excellence Awards.

Previous and Current Advisory Council members include:

  • Alexei Orlov, CMO for Volkswagen Group, China

  • Moira Cullen, Senior Director Global Design, The Hershey Company

  • David Rogers…

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BSoFly.com Launches This Thursday

Image

I’m excited to launch my personal blog http://bsofly.com/ on April, 25, my birthday!

I hope to experience more of my creative side in my personal blog. I also want to share the FLY things that others are doing. To be fly is to be cool. To do the things you have always wanted to do.

I also have a Facebook page you can like at Facebook.com/BSoFlyDotCom. I’d love your support and hope you can share what you are doing to B So Fly!

 

See you on B-DAY!

Excited to meet #SanAntonio Mayor @Juila

Excited to meet #SanAntonio Mayor @JuilanCastro this afternoon with fellow #LATISM colleagues!

Six Tips from Ford’s CEO #FordNAIAS (video)

 

“Do you seek to understand before you seek to be understood?”

I get passionate about helping others discover possibilities.  I think it’s part of my calling to share things that I have learned, offer a path where it’s been paved or point in the direction of a new one waiting to be trekked on.

Talking and listening are equally important

I also enjoy listening. It’s good to get different perspectives. Even when you don’t agree with others, you can learn something about yourself. For example, disagreeing with someone reconfirms your own beliefs and when in agreement, you can take the moment as an affirmation, maybe even get inspired to do something great.

But, giving advice and listening takes time and sometimes that means offering your undivided attention, away from your mobile device. Yikes! This is challenging for me especially because I definitely get inspired by social media. I use it to share my tidbits of knowledge (obviously) and of course, some of my experiences, like the blogger trip I recently took to Detroit/Dearborn, Michigan where constant social network updates via cell phones are not only accepted but expected.

See how some bloggers took time to talk face-to-face in this #FordNAIAS re-cap—photo borrowed from: http://www.ottawavalleymoms.com/2013/01/recap-of-the-naias-digital-summit/

StackediPhones

 

Meet and greet with Ford’s CEO

Earlier this year I got invited by Ford Motor Company to attend the National American International Auto Show (NAIAS/#FordNAIAS), I couldn’t help but get excited. First of all, it was my first “online influencer” trip of 2013 and the agenda was jam packed with fun activities including exclusive time with Ford’s executives, a visit to Ford labs, test drives and The Henry Ford Museum to name a few. In addition, I knew I was going to see a side of this American-icon-of-a-company that not many get the opportunity to check out.

 A few pics from the museum and labs

Again, lots of opportunities to share ideas with bloggers from around the world (yes, Ford brought in nearly 200 influentials from all over! Post on that coming soon!) But also, I’d have an opportunity to listen and learn from top management.

 

 Bloggers get VIP media access

Today, I want to share with you one of my most memorable moments of #FordNAIAS which was chatting with Alan Mulally, President and CEO of Ford Motor Company. It was one of my favorite moments for two key reasons. First, to have a CEO of such a large company share a genuine Q&A with non-traditional media is pretty impressive.  Secondly, I knew I would have this great opportunity to be a voice for you and hopefully bring you a few words of wisdom and I did indeed do just that!

I asked Mr. Mulally what advice he would offer young professionals that might be interested in being part of all the innovation by joining the Ford organization in the future (lots of technology, sustainability and design concepts going on at Ford right now. Post on that coming soon.) I was hoping he would tell us a little bit about his personal career experience and he definitely did share some interesting points.

Here are CEO Alan Mulally’s professional tips below along with a few comments I’ve added:

  • Expected Behaviors

Ford has a set of expected behaviors integrated into their mission. Actually, a lot of companies adopt such goals for their employees. It’s important to understand what the culture of an organization is to build a successful relationship with it whether it be as an employee or a partner of sorts. http://corporate.ford.com/doc/one_ford.pdf

  • Follow Your Passion

Before becoming a CEO, Alan Mulally grew up with a dream to be an astronaut but when he realized he was color blind, he had to switch gears. He looked at his passion differently but did not lose it. That led him to a career in aviation at Boeing.

  • Be Technically Competent

To work with the best, you have to prepare to be the best in your field. Understand how things work. Never stop learning!

  • Teamwork

In the real world, people have to work together to solve problems. Make sure you understand the “skill” it takes to manage those relationships and your role in a project.

  • Values

If expected behaviors or mission of a company do not match your professional values, then it will be very difficult to live there all day.

  • Results Oriented Attitude

The bottom line will always exist. No matter how many goals you set, if you don’t reach any of them, you are not in business.

“Do you seek to understand before you seek to be understood?” Video

Ford Motor Company paid for my travel and accommodations at the three day NAIAS Digital Summit. I was

not compensated in any other manner for my time. My opinions posted here are my own.

 

Why you should speak at LATISM’12

Be a leader. Be part of history.

My journey with LATISM (Latinos in Social Media) began in 2009 when I stumbled upon the hash tag #LATISM. I had no idea what I had found. I just knew that I was attracted to just about every post that preceded #LATISM.

Then last year, my accidental find led me to a conference call with LATISM leaders and other curious folks like myself. A few months after that, I was submitting paperwork to be a chapter director, then in October, I helped organize Texas’ first chapter Tweet up! In November, I attended the first major national conference in Chicago, and I attended as a leader!

Today I am chipping in and doing my part to help make LATISM’12 even better! See, the conference will be held in my home state of TEXAS this year so it has to be BIGGER and BETTER!

I want you to be a leader. Everyone has something to offer and to share. LATISM’12 brings the online and offline leaders together. It’s the perfect opportunity to create synergy and ignite change; that is why you should be there and be part of history.
Check out this link to see how I participated in LATISM’11 and how you can be part of LATISM’12.

http://blog.latism.org/2012/06/byrdiefranco-encourages-others-to-take-the-lead-at-latism12/

Four tips on professional event networking

Bring plenty of business cards.

Meeting fellow professionals is important in any career, but if they can’t remember you then you have wasted your time. Presenting yourself with a business card shows confidence and purpose.

  • If you are unemployed, a student or just do not know how to brand yourself yet, you should still have business cards. There is almost no excuse to not have a personal business card. Order free cards online at sites such as Vista Print.
  • As a backup, use your cell or smart phone to capture people’s contact information and don’t forget to follow up after the event.
  • Some people will tell you they don’t believe in business cards or don’t use them anymore. I can respect that but at the end of the day, if the key person I want to connect with prefers a card, then I’d rather have one than not. There are apps like Bump that can substitute for exchanging a card but both parties must have it downloaded on their smart phone.

 

Have purpose.

Networking events are meant to be beneficial but if you’re not in the right state of mind, they can be a distraction. You need to find the right kind of events. If you are new to the networking scene, then by all means get out there and start.

  • Go to events that are related to your industry or the industry you want to be in such as specific organization happy hours or group meet-ups.
  • Do some online research on Linked In, Facebook, Meet-Up and Google on topics and events that sound interesting to you.
  • If you are in sales or an entrepreneur, then you can benefit from general events such as your local chamber events.

Don’t be shy. Be kind.

You might feel awkward at events if you are shy or introverted but you have to get over it.

  • People have their own unique personalities, some will be great and others will be jerks. But, remember your goal. Network or go home.
  • Remember, we are all human so don’t ever feel intimidated. If you have something to offer (I’m sure that you do). Remember your talent in those moments when you want to curl back into your shell.
  • Look people in the eyes and give them your attention.

Pay attention.

I have to stress that last bullet point on looking people in the eye.

  • If there is one thing that you take from this, it should be the importance of being in the moment. Engage in the conversation you are in. You never know what it might lead to. I’m not saying spend the entire event with one person, but you need to acknowledge the current opportunity.
  • If you are talking to someone, don’t spend the entire time with them looking past them into the crowd. That is so disrespectful and a personal pet peeve of mine.
  • Listen. You’ll need to remember whom you met so you can follow-up accordingly. Because you will follow-up right?

Consumers share experiences and make dec

Consumers share experiences and make decisions together. – Tim Hayden from @44doors #MobileMarketing #Explore

How neighborly are you? A reaction to Meetup’s 9/11 email

Growing up I lived in a remote part of town off a sporadicly trafficked highway. My neighbors were an empty, cracked, grassless lot  to my left and a 10 ft. cylinder block fence to my right. In short, I became very good at creating my world. But, I always wanted neighbors though. I would see families interact on TV shows and thought how nice it might be to go outside and play in the street with the kids next door. I would have to go out of my way to see my friends. Correction, my mom would drive me out of her way so I could visit with friends (thanks mom). Today, I have my own home and I have neighbors. But, I’m not sure that I still want to go outside and play with them.

Today, we don’t really get to control who our neighbors are. But, we are able to choose whom we spend those extra 15-30 minutes with.  And let’s me honest, for a lot of us, that time is not spent outside leaning against the fence or asking for a cup of sugar. Instead of being restricted to chat with the person next door, we go online and pick who we want to poke, tweet or just plain stalk on Facebook (don’t act like you’ve never done it).

Anyway, my point is that it’s ironic that before, I used to look at TV and like the kids in my favorite shows, wish that I had neighbors to play with everyday.  Now my TV gets little use but I do look into another screen daily. Except this time, that screen is not my  fantasy neighborhood; It’s a real neighborhood! I use my computer to say hello to my virtual neighbors, check-in and see if they need anything or just share an invitation or a smile :-).  Most of them are far from local but I’m closer to them than people that are just a few feet away.

Now, anyone who knows me knows that I am not at home on my computer all the time. I am out in my community A LOT. I network. I work. I run. I do lots. I even still find myself going out of my way to see my friends. Seriously, like four-hour drives (but that’s another blog).  I am part of several online and offline communities but here I would like to briefly mention one of those communities called Meetup.

I am an assistant organizer with the Meetup group Hispanic Professionals DFW and through it I have made some new friends. Our goal with this group is unite Hispanic professionals and do fun, laid back activities. Many of us network all the time and it’s always about business. This group is about friendships first. If there is a professional connection, that’s a bonus! Reading Scott’s email today reminded me of how important it is to go outside and remember to be neighborly, even with those people that live next door to you.

Today on 9/10/11, I got an email from Meetup founder Scott Heiferman. He shared his own story of him and his neighbors and how those relationships changed after 9/11. The impact of that horrific day changed him. Because of that change, we now have Meet-Up. The online site helps facilitates in-person events for people that are united with a specific interest.

His email is below:

Fellow Meetuppers,

I don’t write to our whole community often, but this week is
special because it’s the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and many
people don’t know that Meetup is a 9/11 baby.

Let me tell you the Meetup story. I was living a couple miles
from the Twin Towers, and I was the kind of person who thought
local community doesn’t matter much if we’ve got the internet
and tv. The only time I thought about my neighbors was when I
hoped they wouldn’t bother me.

When the towers fell, I found myself talking to more neighbors
in the days after 9/11 than ever before. People said hello to
neighbors (next-door and across the city) who they’d normally
ignore. People were looking after each other, helping each
other, and meeting up with each other. You know, being
neighborly.

A lot of people were thinking that maybe 9/11 could bring
people together in a lasting way. So the idea for Meetup was
born: Could we use the internet to get off the internet — and
grow local communities?

We didn’t know if it would work. Most people thought it was a
crazy idea — especially because terrorism is designed to make
people distrust one another.

A small team came together, and we launched Meetup 9 months
after 9/11.

Today, almost 10 years and 10 million Meetuppers later, it’s
working. Every day, thousands of Meetups happen. Moms Meetups,
Small Business Meetups, Fitness Meetups… a wild variety of
100,000 Meetup Groups with not much in common — except one
thing.

Every Meetup starts with people simply saying hello to
neighbors. And what often happens next is still amazing to me.
They grow businesses and bands together, they teach and
motivate each other, they babysit each other’s kids and find
other ways to work together. They have fun and find solace
together. They make friends and form powerful community. It’s
powerful stuff.

It’s a wonderful revolution in local community, and it’s thanks
to everyone who shows up.

Meetups aren’t about 9/11, but they may not be happening if it
weren’t for 9/11.

9/11 didn’t make us too scared to go outside or talk to
strangers. 9/11 didn’t rip us apart. No, we’re building new
community together!!!!

The towers fell, but we rise up. And we’re just getting started
with these Meetups.

Scott Heiferman (on behalf of 80 people at Meetup HQ)
Co-Founder & CEO, Meetup
New York City
September 2011


Add info@meetup.com to your address book to receive all Meetup
emails

To manage your email settings, go to:
http://www.meetup.com/account/comm/

Meetup, PO Box 4668 #37895
New York, New York 10163-4668

Meetup HQ in NYC is hiring!
http://www.meetup.com/jobs/

Meetup, PO Box 4668 #37895

New York, New York 10163-4668

Meetup HQ in NYC is hiring!

http://www.meetup.com/jobs/ “