Reflections on my first week at MLS Digital HQ in NYC

I’ve just returned to San Francisco after an amazing five days at the MLS league office in New York City working with the Digital team on social media strategy, and I can’t contain my excitement!

With a Commissioner who’s enthusiastic about social media to both build and engage the soccer community, a digital department that’s forward-thinking and ambitious, and a league office staff that’s ready to take social media integration to the next level, I’m lucky to have this unique opportunity to really make a difference in the way people engage with our amazing sport (and those who play, coach, manage and build it too!).

In my best attempt to stay true to the advice I generally give to others, the first thing I’m doing is listening, listening, listening. My boss, MLS Director of Digital Strategy Chris Schlosser, and I met with executives across the league all last week to learn what each of their departments do, how they’ve used social media in the past and what cool and creative ideas they have in the works. I met with editors, writers and videographers to learn who, how, what, when, where and why they publish content. The Digital team even shared a slice with the Commissioner himself. Many more meetings will follow but I’m starting to get a good sense for the present landscape.

While there’s a lot of work to be done, one thing’s for certain. Social media is part of the fabric of sports, and it’s here to stay. I’m humbled be a part of the growth and development of social media at Major League Soccer, and I’m looking for thoughts, feedback and suggestions from Tweeters, bloggers, Facebookers, journalists, website-readers, employees, executives and fans alike. Always feel free to pop a comment below, send me an email, or Tweet me @vandey01.

In the meantime, here are a few photos from my first week in the office:

Chris Schlosser and me
MLS Director of Digital Strategy Chris Schlosser and me at the office.

Chris Bettin and me
Chris Bettin showing me the Drupal ropes.

Chris Bettin and me
Greg Lalas generally just being cool as always.

Extra Time podcast
The Extra Time podcast being recorded before my very eyes.

Don Garber checking out Digital space
Commissioner Don Garber checking out the Digital office space with Chris Schlosser and Chris Bettin. That’s Turchese d’Andrea in the foreground at her computer.

Judy Concha and me
Judy Concha showing me more of the Drupal ropes. (There’s a lot of ropes)

The amazing MLS Digital Office, my NYC home away from home
What an awesome office space we have!

Opta in action
The Opta team training up on the software before #FirstKick.