Yesterday on the blog we introduced you to one of or new exciting team members, Amber Naslund.
While Amber has been a big name in the world of social media for years, we realize that not everyone knows who she is or what she’s accomplished. So, we thought that we’d shed a little more light on her so the entire world can get to know her like we do.
Today, we did a short little Q&A with Amber to find out a little bit more about her past, why she decided to join our team, what she has in store for the future of Sysomos and few more fun things.
So, without further ado, please meet Amber Naslund:
What did you do prior to joining the Sysomos team?
For the last four years, I’ve owned a social business consulting firm with my co-founder, Matt Ridings. We work with enterprise companies to improve their social collaboration and adoption to make “social business” truly operational in the real business world.
Prior to that I led social strategy at Radian6 and Salesforce.
What attracted you to Sysomos?
First and foremost was the people. I’ve learned along the way that culture fit is everything when you join a company. I’m encouraged by Jim and the executive team’s leadership, and felt like they were a team that I’d enjoy creating things with. That matters a lot. And I figured they’d be willing to put up with me. I loved absolutely everyone I met in the interview process – fun, enthusiastic people – and the bonus is that I get to be reunited with some former Radian6 colleagues, too.
Second was the potential of the platform itself and the incredible work going on behind the scenes around innovation and tech advancement. There’s a lot going on with the Sysomos platform that just hasn’t gotten much attention out in the world — I had no idea myself! — so it’s a heck of an opportunity to have a killer product just waiting to have its story told and give customers a real advantage.
What are you hoping to accomplish with the Sysomos team?
Like I said above, the Sysomos team and technology are doing great things, and I want people to know that, much more than they have to date! I’m also hoping that we can really work internally to collaborate and make Sysomos customers’ overall experience with us – from product to useful content to customer service – the best in the industry.
This market is in a very unique state right now and I think we have an opportunity to really do something exemplary with our customers. This kind of technology can really change the way people work, and I think we have a great opportunity to make that potential a reality.
Oh, and we have to have some FUN. What good is work if you’re serious all the time?
Where do you see the future of social media heading?
Social is in the normalizing phase right now, which means it’s a lot of grunt work, and the reality check that ‘social’ is NOT synonymous with tools and tech like Facebook. It’s a behavior and a method of doing business that demands open communication and community focus regardless of the technology involved..
The tools are just enablers of that philosophy, exposing the ability to be more communicative and customer-centric through tech. I think we’re starting to see glimmers of movement in that direction, so I think the future of the industry is all about pushing that forward and improving our businesses, both culturally and operationally, to take advantage of what modern tech allows us to do.
Plus, there will always be cat videos. It’s simply not the internet without cat videos.
You gave a great TED Talk on mental illness in 2012, what inspired it?
I was asked, actually. I have to give credit to my friend Jacqui Chew for that. She wanted me to give a talk at TedX Peachtree, and we were tossing around topic ideas. She knew I’d written about my experiences with depression and anxiety before, and wondered if I’d do a talk about it. At first, I thought “NO WAY!!”.
But the more I considered it, the more I realized that it wasn’t really about me. It was about telling other people out there that they weren’t alone, that many of us suffer too, and that we have to stop being so silent about it. The stigma around mental illness is so awful, and it’s only through talking about it that we change it. So that made it worthwhile.
Who’s your hero?
I have a few, but most immediately I think of my friend Sara Santiago.
She’s been through more than almost anyone I know living with crazy neurological conditions, and yet she maintains a beautiful sense of humor, optimism, and a strength that you rarely see. I think of her daily, and more than once I’ve said to myself “look, lady, if Sara got up today, you can handle this.” And she’s so open and vulnerable about it all.
Plus, when she reads this, she’ll either cry or swear at me or both. Which is exactly why I love her.
You wrote a book once. How hard was it and would you write another one?
I had a co-author, so I had it easier than many! The writing wasn’t the hard part, that comes pretty naturally to me. But the marketing, the promotion, the book tour…that was the hard part. Getting the book sold is a heck of a lot harder than getting it written in my view. But it’s the kind of hard I love.
Not only would I write another one, but it’s being written as we speak. This one I may self-publish, even, just to try it out. Glutton for punishment, I guess.
What’s your idea of a perfect vacation (despite just starting a new job)?
Cabin. Woods. Near water. Solitude and quiet. A stack of books, no itinerary, campfires and a couple of great bottles of wine. Or a case. Whatever.
Where’s one place that you’ve never been but would love to go?
Spain! It’s on the top of my wish list. New Zealand is a close second.
What’s the one app you can’t live without at this very moment?
I’m such a terrible example of a tech geek because I use hardly any apps. But I’d say Evernote. I rely on it daily to help me remember all the stuff I’d surely forget otherwise, from shopping lists to blog post ideas.
And lastly, if you’d like to see the great TED talk that Amber gave in 2012, we have it right here for you:
So, if you haven’t yet, please help us welcome Amber to the team and keep an eye on what she’s going to do here.