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Connection over Projection

This morning I listened to a powerful 4-minute Punk HR podcast episode from workplace thought-leader Laurie Rueittimann. I have always enjoyed Laurie’s work as she is a disruptor and challenger of the status quo.  There are not so many people that are prepared to stand on a hill communicating their beliefs so boldly and purposefully.

Additionally, I had a wonderful 2-hour catch up with another progressive challenger of the status quo and thought-leader in Mike Vacanti yesterday afternoon and what listening to Laurie and having a great, constructive conversation with Mike has led me to reflect upon today is the impact and service of my social media interactions.

Social media strategy

Curiously only yesterday morning I had made a note to review my social media strategy.  This topic was already on my mind, yet somehow these two great humans have held the mirror up to something that was already percolating. So I wrote this post on LinkedIn earlier today and wanted to invite you, the reader, into a period of reflection with me.

  • Why do you use social media today?
  • What value do you offer to others by being on social media?
  • What value do you gain from being on social media?
  • What does a good experience of you and others look like on social media?

Beyond COVID-19

Mike and I spoke yesterday about being in service.  Creating and forging the path so that we do not miss this opportunity of personal and macro re-set for the better. Laurie is speaking about not adding to the noise that already exists during this crisis.

These two points really have me reflecting on my use of social media.

Projection

If I am honest, historically social media has been a projection tool for me personally, although I haven’t always wanted to be honest about that!

  • Here is my post, please like it and comment, but with no real call to action off the back of it
  • Here is my podcast, please listen to it, but with no real call to action off the back of it
  • Here is my comment, please like it, but with no real call to action off the back of it

Notice my lack of a call to action off the back of any of my interactions.  As my friend, Jane Adshead-Grant would gracefully say, an invitation rather than a call.

Now projection is not a bad thing in and of itself if it adds value, is in genuine service and offers some form of clear invitation off the back of it.  It is up to the individual if they answer the invitation, but the invitation should be there I feel. However, at any time, but especially now, just adding to the noise without a clear ‘what’s in it for me’ invitation, I feel, is unhelpful.

This doesn’t have to cost anything, but also it can whilst being respectful to our times, yet I have been generally adding to the noise as I have not offered clear “this is how this event, podcast, post can serve you.”

You may completely disagree and challenge this thinking and I welcome that.  I wish to start a conversation here.

Connection

Now I think about connection rather than projection. I shared in my post on LinkedIn this morning, which I do feel adds value and has a clear invitation to reflect, that I am only engaging with 5% of my LinkedIn connection or approx. 160 people. Now 160 people is a lot of people to be in contact with, yet I am sitting in the questions of:

  • Is it better to have a network of regular and semi-regular connections meaningfully and disconnect from those where there really is no relationship?
  • Do I actively and intentionally build at least some warm connection, even if loose, with all of my connections?

Core values

Connection is one of my non-negotiable core values alongside growth which is why this topic is sitting so deeply within me today. My core value of connection feels, somehow, to be experiencing some tension and that is what this article is exploring both for myself and I hope serving you in some way.

I don’t have all the answers as I finish this article and that is ok. As our friend Mike Vacanti says often, it is about who you become on the journey. So my journey of exploration around the ‘what next’ on social media continues.

I would love to hear what comes up from you in the comments as you read these reflections and provocations.

Be well and safe.

Garry Turner
Garry Turnerhttps://my.visme.co/projects/rxyz4jpo-garry-turner-interpersonal-catalyst
Combining a powerful mix of international sales and culture expertise, Garry is facilitating individual and team transformations as an interpersonal catalyst. With over 20 years of sales and relationship building experience and qualified in organisational design and development, learning & development and as a chartered member of the CIPD, he focuses on bringing intentional human-centred working to all walks of life, and has the evidence to validate this necessary paradigm shift. Whether through connection-centred workshops, keynote talks, live events or through Thinking Partnerships, Garry is driven by his two non-negotiable core values of growth and connection.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Hey Gary, I love your thoughts here. It takes me to Dunbar’s number. Just because a post, an article, a comment, and expression as it invite to be touched by by someone in their thoughts, or call to connect or act, can reach millions. Literally, millions. We can still only relate with 130 to 150-ish people. It’s our hardwired governor. It keeps us human and when we chase the numbers, it exposes us when we’re not.

    To journey my friend.

  2. Interesting reflections and questions Garry. I’m noticing that social media keeps popping up as a ‘thing’ in your life to have something done with it – e.g. your previous cleanse, and this pondering here, maybe other times before that. I’m wondering what you’re imagining social media can give you or do for you, or what you’re imagining it can give or do for others?

    • thank you Helen for the provocation. I imagine and feel that questions or content that aid holding the mirror up to one’s thinking can be helpful, yet of course not causal.

      Of course, only we in the moment via our thinking decide what we see and think, yet my internal sense of ‘is this helpful’ is the story playing on my projector.

      Thank you for the question and in the next moment, this may look different! :-) This story of offering value via social is paying currently for sure, yet it will be the person that sees anything that discerns that for them.

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