Carey the Torch caught up with Brandon Chicotsky, lecturer in the business communication and management discipline. His areas of expertise include law and ethics, business communication, media branding with interdisciplinary aspects of human capital valuations, organizational management, and corporate public relations.
Twitter Handle: @Chicotsky
When did you first start using Twitter and what was the draw to it?
I was present for Twitter’s “soft launch” at the SXSW Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas in 2007. A bunch of techies and I joined the platform, which was mostly a text push-notice system that created personalized followership and 140-character microblogging. Of course, today, the platform has evolved into a journalist echo chamber, social movement change agent, and pop culture dissemination engine. While I would like to claim foresight into these developments, any claims would be difficult to substantiate. Many fellow early adopters and I actually had grander visions for Twitter’s impact and usefulness. The most credible reason I can offer for joining Twitter was my keen interest in the merger of media, technology, online community, information, and branding. Twitter satisfied each category.
Who are your favorite people to follow on Twitter?
I’ll just leave this right here: 17 Venture Capital and Angel Investors to Follow on Twitter.
I follow only a few hundred people, and almost every account includes the following industry: venture capital or “super angel;” company founder or c-suiter; an academic centered around finance, media, or branding; or a technologist.
Do you feel Twitter enhances your role as a Carey professor?
Every week, my master’s students engage industry leaders who either visit my seminar in person or key-in via video conference. These mini-guest lectures are essential for expanding our network and knowledge of industry expectations. Twitter is one of the platforms where I showcase these visits, and where I connect with the industry leader for follow-up. Thus, the platform serves to showcase and acknowledge our college’s newest industry contact while maintaining a relationship beyond the initial engagement. Moreover, prospective master’s students can see what opportunities exist if they enroll in my course or join the Carey Business School community.
How does your use of Twitter influence your teaching?
I often incorporate technology and social media into my lectures. For example, my students recently covered case studies involving crisis communication in a corporate context. I had students search trends on Twitter for any real-time examples of crises in business. We then could evaluate growth patterns from viral activity while evaluating the corporate public relations strategy for addressing media online. In another scenario, If I ever speak to a large lecture hall, I’ll often hold a smart-tablet and field inquiries from listeners on Twitter who are either too timid to raise their hand or perceive it’s inopportune to interrupt my lecture. Along with enabling me to better manage interactivity and provide reserved students a platform for engagement, the online posts can generate outside interest and create a rich archive of content related to the lecture.
What was one of the most memorable Twitter exchanges you’ve had?
Just this week I received a direct message from an associate of Mark Cuban informing me that we were quoted together in a company press release. This is definitely among the most memorable exchanges I’ve had this year.
As for other memories, I’ll leave it to your readers to tweet at me to find out. They can connect with me at @Chicotsky.