Tag Archives: social media

Sunrise, Sunset

sunrise cropped

I live in provincial New Zealand. Our towns and city are small. We are well networked and we know a lot about each other. We like to do business with people we know and trust. We are interested in new people and businesses, but we like them to make a connection and engage with us too.

The other day I noticed another retail business having a closing down sale, a national brand that hasn’t been there long, and I reflected on the businesses that have gone and those that look like they’ll be gone soon too.  Many of them have come into town, set up a pretty shop and waited for us to come to them.

I belong to communities that are active in the social media space. We are well networked, we know a lot about each other. We like to do business with people we know and trust. We are interested in new people and businesses, but we like them to make a connection and engage with us too.

I see many people and businesses set up on-line accounts and then give up after a while because it hasn’t given them the results they wanted. They have set  up pretty accounts, told us what they do, and waited for us to come to them.

I have read much about the changing face of retail, of business, of work, of life due to the phenomenon of “on-line social”.  That the sun has gone down on the old ways of doing things in favour of those who have embraced new technologies.

But I think the rules are the same. Those that actively engage, connect and recognise the needs of their community will flourish. Those that sit and wait for people to come to them will not.  I am a big fan of social media, but I have reached the conclusion that I love it because it enhances what I do anyway. I have always been a connector, a networker, an active community person. Social media gives me another forum and another tool to extend my networks and my communities.

To enhance your business, or your career – GET SOCIAL, ENGAGE. In person or on-line, tell people who you are, make connections, create communities of interest.

Blurred Lines


A few thoughts and discussions are converging with me right now. Converging so as to create an internal debate about the blurred lines between work and personal life.

This week  #NZLead had a tweet discussion about social media in the workplace, which raised the issue about individual, personal behaviour on social media and the potential to integrate this use into the workplace.

I read a blog about employee engagement which included a familiar challenge to the pursuit of the holy grail of engaged staff. My personal view is that  engagement has too many pluses for us not to pursue it, but there is logic in the discussions that question.

An on-line discussion about work-life balance highlighted different thinking about how to manage the never-ending conflict of what is “work”, what is “life” and what exactly is “balance”

As a result I have been reflecting on the people I know in real life and on-line who represent the divergent thinking about work and individuality, the job versus the person, and how we cannot assume that what is right for one will be right for another.

What are the blurred lines?

  •  There are many of us who desire to be engaged in our work. We actively seek workplaces that encourage that engagement. It gives meaning for us and we want others to experience that same meaning.
  • There are just as many for whom work is a means to an end. It provides for their families, enables them to pay for their dreams but is “just a job”. They may enjoy their job, but do not need it to be all encompassing.
  • This is also reflected on social media. Those who have fallen in love with social media and can see the potential for business and the workplace have merged their personal and professional persona (although to varying degrees)
  • Many on social media keep their work persona very separate. In some cases this may be due to workplace social media policy, but in many cases it is a deliberate “I am not my job” choice.
  • Some will give everything to their job, but strictly in the hours they are contracted for, so that they can pursue other activities in their own time. They will be committed to their job and will be fully present, but only for the “things I get paid for”
  • Others will be more than happy to say “what spare time?”

So what do you think?

As we pursue our socially active, fully engaged workplaces, are we being fair to everyone?

How do we deliver practices that recognise the value of all contributors, respecting and honouring individual rights to determine their own relationship with their job? And should we?





Exploring the possibilities of social media

Screenshot_2014-01-21-20-06-09I have been using social media for a few years now, learning and exploring the possibilities. Initially, like many people, I saw twitter as a bit frivolous, FaceBook as too uncontrollable and LinkedIn a bit staid.  But, I had read enough to tell me that as a small business I should be thinking about social media marketing.

I began without much of a plan. I knew I had to be business-like and that I had a lot to learn. I was very lucky to get some great advice early on from Sonya at Cue Social Media about how to engage better.  And then I just practised, tried things out, read lots of articles, observed what others did, observed the reactions to what I did, took a few risks and figured out what worked for me personally and for my business.

My facebook page still hasn’t many “Likes”, I don’t think that is the perfect medium for me and my business, but it’s there and serves a purpose when I want to share business related stuff. LinkedIn has grown and I have learnt to use it to promote myself and what I do.

But I have discovered my all time favourite, the one that fits me like a glove, is Twitter.

Why do I like it?

  1.  I like to talk
  2. I can get a bit passionate about some things (some would say opinionated)
  3. I like to understand all sides of a story
  4. I am an open person and am generous with my knowledge and my time
  5. I love to learn
  6. I really like meeting new people
  7. I’m not fazed by “what” people are- I respect you for who you are as a person
  8. I advocate for what I believe in
  9. I support my friends
  10. I connect people and create networks

These attributes make twitter perfect for me as an individual.  I also believe twitter is perfect for organisations to encourage their people to engage with others; to learn, advocate, find out what their public think, listen to other points of view and generally have great conversations that will ultimately create richer workplaces. The open nature of it is not something to be scared of, if you are clear about what you want to achieve and then trust people to make good choices. There will be people like me in most organisations; those who see the possibilities, embrace the learning and understand the risks.

Finding the HOW is part of the journey. Some will have achieved great things already, but for many it will be a frightening prospect.  I think it is well worth organisations spending  time thinking about the possibilities.

Who is ready to come on the journey with me?