What We Do Well
Susan Reid’s thoughts on women entrepreneurs got me thinking about the SocialSphere and what makes us all successful when we are. It’s no surprise that those entrepreneurial traits that she outlines are found in familiar places online.
Susan points out that successful entrepreneurs have several traits in common. I found those traits alive and well online.
- discipline …
Laser focus at Zen Habits
- direction …
Clarity, simplicity, and consistency at 37 Signals
- detailed plans of action …
planning for creative productivity at Lateral Action
- decision making ability …
decision or choice — know the difference?
- developmental network — mentors, coaches, personal board of directors — who help focus their strategy …
including mentoring advice from the Wall Street Journal
- determination and confidence …
Chris Brogan on blazing trails
- distinctive ability to perceive problems or setbacks as doorways or opportunities …
living Life in Perpetual Beta
She added business leadership characteristics that seem to be found more often in women — an affinity for balanced, life-style businesses; a bias toward service-focused, customer care; values-led business leadership; faith in intuition, trust, and holistic decision-making; and a success definition that includes relationships. Great social media practitioners — men and women — work toward those same people-centered values. . . . This framework for measuring social media from Peter Kim points to the core of that likemindedness. The very word social in social media and social networking seems to make that people-centeredness an obvious trait.
When I read the last section, Top Five Mistakes Made by Women in Business, I began looking at our online conversation and and how we might handle it best for new people arriving in the SocialSphere. .
How to Connect with New Arrivals to the SocialSphere
Credibility comes from the “context and content.” People meet us and try to place us among what they already know. They use their experience and our first impression — how we look, what we say, what we do — to recognize signs that might validate our consistency, integrity, competence, and trustworthiness.
Every person measures those qualities based on measures of content and context they have used in the past. Note this example and the differences in context.
When did you start using social media tools beyond blogs?
Three years of experience with social media tools can be a lot.
Three years ago, social media wasn’t discussed.
Three years ago Twitter didn’t exist.
Three years experience is still entry level in offline contexts.
It’s a contextual gap.
To establish an authentic relationships, we need to communicate within their context. If, for example, we want to do business, a first impression needs to convey credibly that three years of social media experience is more than entry level. Credible first impressions are crucial to authentic relationships. Authentic relationships are crucial to strong reputations.
Here are six ways to credible first impressions and authentic, lasting relationships.
- Never let ’em see you sweat.
When we’re at our best we’re authentic without the gory details. After they’ve been processed, we debrief on learning situations with appropriate distance. When we greet new situations with confidence and direction, it’s natural to invite colleagues into partnerships and collaborations. Our ability to deliver with speed and accuracy increases. That’s visible and professional authenticity. When a job is being well executed, the amount of sweat is irrelevant.
- Positive beats negative.
When we’re positive, we naturally gravitate toward supporting common goals and positive outcomes. Positive situations and positive emotions are attractive. Social media tools are made for building connections. Connections happen when we take positive action, offer solutions, and raise others and their work above us.
- Show up and take ownership — even when it’s not easy.
When we make every promise, even those to ourselves, unbreakable, we build integrity and credibility. Things as simple as returning phone calls and emails elevates a relationship when everyone else is too busy. Showing people that you value them and their time is respectful — respect is a core component to thriving relationships.
- BE a product of the level playing field.
When we’re level — outside of a hierarchy — it’s easier to be calm, assertive, and personally invested without taking things personally. On a level field, every point of view is worthy. It’s a matter of making space to step back to listen actively and responding with integrity.
- Think and answer for the long-term.
When we give our best response, not our “first response,” it takes longer, but we show confidence, courage of conviction, and reflective wisdom. Slowing down to allow our best ideas to catch up identifies us as a professional.
- Make everything about them.
We do our best when we make a space and make it easy for folks to be themselves, be successful, and connect with other folks. People remember most how we make them feel and how we offer a chance to find purpose or meaning in their lives.
- Value their experience.
When we invite people in and find ways to align their goals with our own, we ignite the power of community. Communities accomplish what individuals cannot do alone. The opportunity to share ideas and learn from new arrivals is thrilling. If we listen to learn as well as teach, the potential is only limited by our ability to dream. When we invest in other people, they invest back.
We’ve built a highly collaborative social media culture — one that thrives on learning from each other openly, honestly, and with minimal hierarchy. We know how to meet, interact, and build communities with our customers / readers. That culture is what we value. It’s also what we have to offer.
New folks coming are potential. They will change a culture, just as we did when we got here. If we reach out in the best ways possible, they’ll be our new readers and our new clients. They’ll be the new members of our communities, and we’ll be theirs.
How can we help each other make credible connections with new arrivals? If you’re new to the SocialSphere, what advice do you have?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Work with Liz!!