Social Media Liberates and Amplifies. Do you Feel Like Liberating?

Infographic on how Social Media are being used...
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Social media is authenticity with a liberating microphone ready to amplify if we use its power for good.

I would encourage leaders to look at the implications of social media more broadly than just marketing and fads.  It really is a liberating tool to express the feelings and thoughts we have about people, companies and corporate culture, communities and leaders in broad and sweeping ways. Soon we will freely see people talking about their company culture, the treatment of its people and how closely the company brand aligns with their corporate reality.  We can use this contagion as a tool to promote not only what we are but what we aspire to be.  I would encourage leaders to be real on who they are, be bold and state what they aspire to be, work every day to create a magnetic culture, own up when mistakes happen and be visionary and create a world of possibilities.  Now that is authenticity and authenticity is the source code and content for what appears in social media.

So to the world out there on this microphone I would say…I am a leader in the making…every day growing, learning from lessons and wishing I would hurry up and live up to the image I have of great leadership.

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Politically Correct…Not Us.

No political correctness
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Tim, one of your employees, comes into your office full of “you know what the problem is”…his saying for just about every issue he has uncovered.  He has done it enough that you know it is his “go-to-line”.  You think to yourself, “wow he has superhero vision, since he sees all the problems of the world.  Why can’t he come in and tell me what problems he has solved?”  Instead, what you actually say is: “what’s going on?”

Then there is Betty who says, “it will never work” to just about every suggestion or new idea to improve the process.  She spends her time campaigning to anyone who will listen to her complaints.  You think to yourself “ if she would spend this much time and energy searching for solutions instead of just complaining about the problem, we would be miles ahead of the competition.”  What you actually say is: “now Betty, we have to think positive here.”

Or Frank, the Sales VP who is the fair-weather leader…always critical of new trends until everyone else on the Facebook community or the Google search universe says it is a hit.  He then converts with not so much as an acknowledgement of his previously strong opposition.  You think to yourself, “hmmmm…Really…what was that?  Wasn’t HE the one that said ‘this thing won’t catch on’?”  What you actually say is “Frank that is a great idea, I am glad we are going to implement it.”

Have you seen anyone like this?  Your answer has to be “yes”.  We have all been on either side of this type of conversation at some point in our lives.  We are all blessed with at least one person whose anchor is negative, uninspiring and unimaginative.  And we all know people who keep their opinions to themselves to the detriment of the team.

It is not surprising to me that, as leaders, we all have people who are disconnected from themselves and their greater inner positive power.  But what is surprising to me is despite how much leaders really do care about their employees they do not always say the words that are rolling around in their head, heart and soul.  Somehow we have this notion is it better to be politically correct, hold back the truth, maybe even lie with a smile, and keep our brilliance in our own heads rather than to share it.

With our friends and loved ones, we feel the freedom to share our opinions and thoughts.  Political correctness goes out the window.  We want the honest truth to keep us grounded, help us grow, and garner varying perspective.

Next time your employee or leader makes some comments that are less than flattering and you feel so inspired, ask, “Hey, would you be open to some advice?”  Most people appreciate that you asked first and then you can proceed only if you are under the impression they are willing to be open and receive the advice.  Asking first will actually make a difference.

So to Tim, Betty and Frank, here is what I would say to them if they were open to advice:

“Tim, what I like about you is your ability to identify problems.  I would encourage you to come to me with your success stories of how you solved them.  Now, if it is something big I need to know about, please flag the problem early, however if not, feel free to solve it and then share your success stories with me.  Success stories are infectious you know”.

“Betty, you have been here for 15 years.  You have seen this organization grow and change.  Your work has contributed to our team’s success.  In recent months I have sensed a change of heart.  How are you feeling and what is going on? [Pause for her response]  I am going to ask for your support of our new initiative as a veteran of the organization.  If you can focus your energy on making the project and the team a success, we have a real chance at this.  Do you recognize the power for good you have here?  I guess my question to you is ‘are you using it’?”

“Frank….[LOL]…now wasn’t it you who said this social media thing was just a fad?  I am glad we are going to get a Facebook company page.  With 700 million users, there is a real opportunity to be where people are at in a cost efficient way.”

When dealing with tough conversations, be honest and truthful in an inspiring, kind and impactful way.  If being honest is not politically correct, then it is not for us.  As leaders, we have a higher calling and duty for our team.

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People Take Care of People…Period.

Thanks to Social Media, we are seeing just how communal and supportive people are to one another.  Our most basic needs to be socially and emotionally connected are being met in a broad and sweeping way.  It is an amazing new frontier we are experiencing and the business world is catching on in droves.  You have heard the saying “our employees are our most important resource”, yet not as many employees felt that way.  Thankfully, the tides are starting to change…ahh….how good it is and what a glorious change it will be when fully realized.

People ARE the most important resource, people ARE the most important asset, and people ARE the most important gift you will ever get in life.  They are the like water, and air to us…we cannot live without their connection.  Why…because people take care of people….period.

As a leader of an organization, rethink the paradigm.  Your employees should be first in the care chain.  When you take care of your employees first, they will see your customer as their customer and take care of them accordingly.  People will do more when they are in love and they will be naturally inspired to make a difference with others.  When your employees take care of the customers, they will show their love, care and support in return and take care of your business and your shareholders/owners.

Rethink the Paradigm:  Employees then Customers then Shareholders.  Your organizations may be successful but you won’t know just how much you are leaving on the table until you realize this paradigm.

As the leader of You, take care of yourself first.  Fully love yourself first and then you may love and help others.  When you love yourself fully you expect more, learn and grow more, and give and care more.  Caring and giving more are the best things you can do for yourself, others and your company.  Finding out what gifts you are meant to leave, what messages you are meant to share, and what lessons you are meant to teach are the greatest things you can do for others and your company.  When you take care of yourself and then others, it becomes a natural extension to take care of the world including its resources and peace.  Only the most self-actualized and enriched people live this way and aspire for a world of peace and possibilities.

Rethink the Paradigm.  You then Others then the World.  Are you awesome already…taking good care of your health, heart, mind, soul, family and friends, employer, leader, co-workers, community, and earth?  If you are not yet, just imagine how awesome you could be?

People take care of People.  When we understand this fully and emotionally, our new reality will be far greater than anything we could imagine.

Today’s Project:  Show kindness to yourself, to someone who has made it challenging for you in the business community (your boss, your employee, your customer) and do something earth friendly today.  It takes time to see the change so do it again tomorrow and the following day.  Know this: You are changing the direction of your life, the lives of others and the world.  Now that is Awesome!

I would like to hear from you…you matter to me.  What do you think of this interpretation of People taking care of People?  Share your comments below and share with others if you feel so inspired.