I am part of the generation that straddles the time before social media and what came after. Having built my first community in Paris back in 2000, I vividly remember what it took to collect people together and organise events without the benefit of social media or mailing lists, things that we very much take for granted now.

I am a huge cheerleader for social media. How it has changed the digital landscape for us is undeniable. We are able to reach many more people at scale, no matter where they are in the world. No longer are we hemmed…


I was sitting having coffee with another business owner when she said “and then I realised, I don’t want to be the tugboat in my business, I want to be the lighthouse. Do you know what I mean?”

I made a vague “mmhmm” noise and stirred my coffee quietly as she continued talking.

I did know what she meant.

But I didn’t know what it meant for me.

Later that day I found myself Googling “lighthouse vs. tugboat” and coming up with various variations of a self-help parable doing the rounds on the internet.

The parable asks the reader to…


Taking my son to the office was not the plan. Little did I know that I would be the one learning the biggest lesson that day. There was a study day at school. Another one. Despite knowing the dates in advance somehow they always sneak up on me at inconvenient times.

On this particular occasion, I had a meeting at work that I could not miss and our regular babysitters were unavailable. Which meant that we were all out of options and he would have to come with me. Neither of us were thrilled by this.

Our office is a…


Mirrors, myths and magic

I think that this is the question I get asked more than any other.

I run my own consultancy, I run a non-profit. I’m on the board of other organisations, and that’s before we start on the wife, mother, friend roles.

So, how do I do it all? Do I have a Hermione-esque Time Turner? Sadly not, let’s break it down.

I don’t “do it all”, it’s a myth

Let’s just get this out of the way up front, I don’t do it all. I barely even do a little bit of what I could potentially be doing. …


Do you remember when social media felt like a magical place to spend time? Back when it felt like the biggest and most intimate conversations could all happen in one place?

And then the marketers came.

This, people, this is why we can’t have nice things.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a business owner, I’m not blaming the marketers for the state of social media today. We all contributed to the noise that is our current social media world. …

Emmy McCarthy

I wear a lot of hats, most frequently Mama | Community Builder | Curiosity Seeker | Curator of Notes for the Curious: http://bit.ly/notesforthecurious

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