As a leader, how do you feel about social media? Do you use social media? What do you see as advantages or disadvantages of social media?
I once heard the president of a large corporation say that social media is bad and that you should avoid it like the plague. He went on to say that nothing good will come from your involvement in social media. I felt like this viewpoint came from limited knowledge about social media and its benefits.
The Wall Street Journal article Better Leadership Through Social Media by Alexandra Samuel highlights six things leaders can do with social media to make life easier. They are:
1. Create a Leadership Dashboard – “Don’t just monitor the Web for intelligence about your business and brand; mine it for ideas, news and research that will help you develop as a leader.”
2. Stay Focused – “For you and your team, social productivity, planning and visualization tools can keep your focus sharp and creative powers strong.”
3. Change Channels – “If it’s getting difficult to spot the urgent emails amid the accumulating CCs, FYIs and LOLs, escape the inbox by switching to Twitter as your preferred channel for high-priority or time-sensitive communications.”
4. Join a CEO-cial Network – “You need to consciously build a CEO-cial network: a set of five to 15 respected and trusted executives, leaders and advisers whose knowledge, insight and loyalty will have a meaningful impact on your own professional capacity and performance.”
5. Build a Golf Course (Find a retreat amongst all the leadership stress) – “If your mental paradigm of CEO regeneration looks like an afternoon on the golf course, it’s time to bring that golf course to you. Find or build a social-media space that is purely relaxing and restorative—something you can enjoy in that miraculous five-minute gap between meetings.”
6. Amplify Your Voice – “Charismatic leadership is a tremendous asset for any company—but it also creates pressures to project your charisma online through a CEO blog, Twitter feed or YouTube channel.”
Under each point, Alexandra Samuel discussed different platforms leaders can use to make life easier once they take the leap of faith into the social media world.
Why Social Media Is Important
As a participant in social media, I strongly agree with the points she mentioned. Social media has a lot to offer, so use it to your advantage. Even though there are stories of people that posted derogatory comments about their employer or added inappropriate content to their Facebook page and then got fired, there are still major benefits from using social media properly.
One of the biggest benefits I have seen from social media is the ability to connect with others that have the same interests. I use my blog, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and About me pages to connect with others. Through these connections, I have learned how to be a better leader. I have also been able to express how I feel towards leadership.
Leadership Benefits to Social Media
There are a number of people that have helped me to know how to help my employees and work with others. I have also gained valuable insight from others that have experienced my same challenges. Reading their insight has helped me to avoid making the same mistakes they made.
I encourage you to learn about social media and become involved. You don’t have to start on every platform all at once. Enter one platform at a time. Once you reach a comfort level with that platform, try using another until you feel comfortable there. If you have any questions, leave me a comment or send me an email and I will be more than happy to help you.
If the leader I mentioned at the beginning of the post had had a good understanding of social media, I don’t think he would have had the same comments. He would have had a different outlook. Had he started using social media, he would have seen the benefits. How has social media benefited your leadership?
Please share your thoughts and comments in the comments section below!