Blogging apology of sorts

I've been silent on the blog for a few weeks now. I suppose some of this silence has been a legitimate response to all that's been going on: 1 new course that I'm teaching; 2 conferences I've attended; 2 presentations; 2 lengthy roundtrip airplane get the idea. However, a few of the reasons why I've been silent are, perhaps, not as legitimate. You see, I've fallen prey to the same root cause of inactivity experienced by many a student and entrepreneur: I've let one comment, one piece of information, one note derail me and, truth be told, I've found it increasingly difficult to get back on.

Have you been "thrown off the horse" recently?

For context, it might be helpful for you to understand why I started this blog in the first place: it was curiosity, plain and simple. I wanted to know about blogging and figured there was no better way to do so than by doing so.  [Go back to my earliest posts and you may find interest in my random thoughts at that time. Truthfully, I can't recall what I wrote about back then.]

The interesting thing about my blog is that it has followed similar contours to the rest of my professional work experience over the same time frame.

I've spent the last four years learning, exploring, asking, teaching, creating, and doing "stuff" related to the entrepreneurial context. Before 2006, I taught and conducted research on Human Resources and Organizational Behavior topics. I changed the direction of my career in 2006 when on sabbatical leave. Unbeknownst to me at the time was just how much and in what variety of ways this singular decision would change the direction of my career.

It had always been an interest of mine to better understand entrepreneurs and I figured a sabbatical leave would be an ideal way to "break the mold" on my career and start investigating this area for both research and teaching opportunities.

It's been going remarkably well, or so I thought.

I've recently learned that there are some of my colleagues who believe that what I've done over the last four years is worth less (worthless?) and of little value because it isn't found in a journal.

The videos, the interviews with entrepreneurs, the new classes, the interested students, the challenging activities, the thought-provoking questions, the discussions, the blog posts, the blog readers, my ongoing interactions with nascent entrepreneurs...all of it is without value unless it is published in a peer-reviewed academic journal.

That was hard to take and still is. In fact, that was the main reason why I've not written in my blog over the past weeks; they told me (in not so many words) that it doesn't matter. My blogging doesn't count. It's not peer-reviewed.

However, just today, I was reminded by a new blog reader that what I am doing is of value. She contacted me to say that she found interest in both my teaching interests and my blog writing. Keep in mind that before today I had never met her, nor had I reached out to her in any way. What she didn't know at the time she sent me that email was that she would play a significant role in getting me back on my horse.

Has anyone helped you get back on your horse? I'm guessing that nearly every entrepreneur has had an experience similar to mine. You get discouraged, you question what you've been working on for years, and you wonder if there's much of a market for your "thing". You're down; you're off; you're nearly out.

But, then a person comes along side you and supports you, even if they don't realize it at the time. They offer a hand; an idea; a hope that you didn't realize that you needed. And, slowly, you begin to think again that what you're doing does make a difference, at least to one person.

Thanks for helping me back on the horse...really.


CJ said...

GREAT to have you back!!! I have always enjoyed your posts and can't wait to read more.

Bennett Cherry, Ph.D. said...

Thanks, CJ. I appreciate it.

Wesley said...

I enjoy reading your blog as well! Come to think of it, I haven't updated my own blog in several weeks. I'll get to it!

Anonymous said...

You have been an important part of the CSUSM community and especially important for the entrepreneurship students. Your blog may not be peer reviewed... but students aren't interested in reading a peer reviewed journal! Students are interested in hearing from people who are actually out there working for a living and can tell your passion for entrepreneurship carries over into the activities and classes you invest your time into.

Reminds me of a Chinese Proverb: Get up one more time than you fall and you will make it through.