Matthew Roach

Lending a Helping Hand

Many of you probably already know that I am an active twitter user, hell you probably reading this as I tweeted the link to the article. The majority of my traffic comes from twitter. So with that sorted…

Anybody who is a twitter user will realise that, twitter is not just about telling people what you had for lunch or when you woke up, what the weather is like, etc. Well it is for that, but it’s also has great deal more to it, it’s also a great resource for learning, or finding answers to questions quickly, or even provoking a conversation (bit hard I know, you timeline soon fills up).

Over the years I have been using twitter, I have tweeted about pretty much everything, hell I even tweeted I was going have sex in the shower, some people took it out of context, but I was not lying, I just did not explain myself correctly. I actually had a sex in the showeremotibomb it took some explaining, but it was all good fun.

So, what I am I getting at?

Put all the fun aside, twitter has been a huge help for me, not just making new friends online and having fun, but I have also learned a lot from tweeting questions to what I may of thought to be stupid questions. Being a front-end web developer (as you may already know) sometimes I hit problems with things, generally I’ll Google for a bit and see what I get, but I’ll also tweet my issue at the same time in order to get a more mix of answers, 9 times out of 10, somebody will reply with the answer I am after, great, somebody saved my bacon once more, so times I even get a twitter reply before I have had chance to scan the search results in Google.

These passed few months I have not asked that many questions on twitter in the vain of seeking help for a problem, mainly due to not needing to. Not sure why, maybe I am not pushing the boundaries enough, or maybe I am actually getting smarter. I would like to think the latter.

So with that in mind, these passed few months I have been the person on the other end, I have been offering support to people who have asked the questions, by doing this I have made a few extra friends, had some great Skype conversations with people and even been promoted by the person I helped. Each time I offer my help I am expected nothing in return, one of the main reasons I offer my help/knowledge is it will help you and it also helps me.
How is it helping me? You may ask..

Well, I would say about 20% of the help I offer is to questions that I feel I may be able to help with. You may say why offer the help if you are not sure? Well everyone has to learn somehow, so I see it as an opportunity to help someone out as well as help myself learn that bit more. About 90% of these unknowns I actually do know what the user is asking, this actually scares me a little as I am unaware of my own knowledge until it’s questioned, maybe I am becoming more complacent with my skills/ knowledge and am not pushing them enough.

What next?

Well I am going to keep offering my help why I see someone struggling. In the future I am going to document the problems and solutions so others can also learn from them.

Look forward to helping more people with their problems, also I hope people help me why I get stuck! If you are reading this and your not following me on twitter, maybe you should. My twitter username is Follow me on twitter