If you’ve been around Support Driven for awhile, you might remember we’ve run a Writing Challenge in the past. I’m pleased to announce that this fall the challenge is coming back and the Support Driven community is looking to hear more from you. Yes you!

Have you ever wanted to write more outside of your work day?

Share more about your thoughts and opinions on Customer Support?

Create a portfolio of your writing skills and experience for future job opportunities?

Then this challenge is for you! There will be four prompts in this writing challenge and our first prompt will go live on Monday, October 1st. We’ll post challenges every other week to allow you time to gather your thoughts.

To kick things off and help those of you on the fence about participating, I decided to interview Chelsea Baker, Head of Customer Engagement at Recruiterbox. Chelsea ran our past Writing Challenges and actively blogs about her support career here.

How did you get started blogging about support career related topics?

My team first started blogging about the internal team setup when we were hiring some folks.  I have always loved writing, and had personal blogs before, but also found it fun to explore a career / support blog – because I was new to Support, and loved sharing what I’d learned.  I set the blog aside, and picked it back up during some Support Driven writing challenges – which always get me motivated to write!

Why is it important to blog about your work?

In an industry where we all are in different businesses and supporting different types of folks, we have a lot in common.  We all have something to teach others – even if we’re new to the industry. Sharing our ideas, our successes and our failures makes support as an industry stronger, and helps people outside of support see how valuable and important support is as an asset to your team.

Also, it shows growth.  A few years back I wrote a post about having human apologies. More recently, I wrote a post about why I started educating customers as to why we don’t have what they’re asking for, instead of always defaulting to saying that I was sorry we didn’t have a feature.  Sometimes it makes me cringe to go back and re-read some of my early posts, but it’s also an amazing “Journal” of growth.

What kind of influence has blogging about work related topics had on your career?

It always surprises me when people tell me that my posts helped them, or that they shared them with their team as an example of a way to work.  This gives me confidence that maybe I’m not making everything up, and that I know what I’m doing 🙂

Having a career-focused blog is also an amazing asset when you’re applying for jobs.  It allows you to share a lot more about the real “you” than a resume or cover letter ever can.  Whenever I’m hiring, I love perusing an applicant’s blog, and reading through their thoughts and posts.  

How do you come up with ideas?

Sometimes my blog posts are things that I’m interested in, or that I wish I’d know when I first started out in Support.  Other times I will have a passing conversation, or have something happen, and I’ll think about how important it is to document, for myself, and for others, to teach them about what I’ve learned or observed.

I also often pull from other people! One day, I tweeted asking for topics – and wrote about the first thing someone suggested.  It was a fun way to flex my writing muscles, and get a great post up.

Do you have any favorite support career focused blogs?

I’ve always enjoyed the following company’s blogs:

– Buffer’s blog about culture and remote work: https://open.buffer.com/

– Groove’s blog about doing support: https://www.groovehq.com/support

– Helpscout’s blog about doing support: https://www.helpscout.net/blog/

– HelpU – https://www.helpscout.net/helpu/

What would you say to someone reading this who is unsure about participating in the writing challenge because they don’t feel they have anything new to say or contribute?

JUST WRITE! Everyone has a voice that is important, valuable, and will contribute to the world.  The more we talk and write about support the more the world sees us as a valuable asset to companies. The Support Driven writing challenge is also an amazing way to get advice and support on your writing – everyone cares and is incredibly supportive – from people who have blogged for years, to people writing their first post.  

 

Thanks so much for the encouragement Chelsea! 

 

Still on the fence? Join the #writing channel in our Support Driven Slack community to chat with others about writing, blogging platforms to use, and other ways to prep for the writing challenge.

No blog? No problem! Feel free to reach out to me in #u-WordPress to chat. If you’re not in the Support Driven Slack yet, join us here.

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