Everyone Who Doesn’t Agree With Me Is An Idiot!
“Don't hold strong opinions about things you don't truly understand. “ Kid Cudi
“Frankly, I’m suspicious of anyone who has a strong opinion on a complicated issue.” Scott Adams
Picture this. You are at a class reunion and suddenly one of your classmates stands up and shouts an opinion about a controversial topic. Then they declare that anyone in the room that disagrees is uneducated at best and stupid at worst. Probably immoral and unpatriotic as well. Can you see that happening?
How will the rest of that evening go?
You can see the electronic equivalent of that every day on social medial.
I have been amazed at the things I have seen on social media over the past several years. It is my opinion that career professionals should use social media to build their personal brand, not as platforms for social comment.
Or just to keep in touch with your friends!
I think this because of personal and professional reasons. Why antagonize people for no reason?
Unless of course you want to do it professionally, then start a blog!
Speaking of blogs, you can read other articles on management issues here: www.projectmanagementforum.net
I wanted to focus on Facebook in particular. Facebook is both a social and a business site, so it is important to keep that in mind when you post things other than pictures of your vacations or kids!
I am excluding Linked-In from this commentary. This is clearly a site for professionals, so there appears to be a bit more discretion about what is shared.
Some thoughts about Facebook.
If I am your “friend” on Facebook, it is because at some point in our lives we had a personal connection and I would like to keep track of how you are doing. I did not become your friend because I was interested your keen political analysis.
I don’t need you to post political links to your favorite source. I’m a big boy. If I want to know the views of the right or the left, I know where to go. Post another picture of your kid, car, etc. instead.
I don’t need to watch videos of hacks reading the same info they got from the abovementioned websites. If you must post a video, post one of your kid, car, etc. Or any “fails” video. Those are always fun!
If you feel compelled to post political links, please watch the comments. Remember that regardless of your political leaning, at least ½ the people disagree with you. If you are discussing US politics, at least 100 million people disagree with whatever position you take! If you say that everyone who disagrees with your particular world view is an idiot, mentally unstable, uneducated, etc., you could be talking about me! Why would you be friends with someone like that?
Since Facebook is becoming a business sales platform, why would you want to alienate potential customers?
I learned early on to avoid the topics of religion and politics in social settings because of the potential for conflict. Who needs a party with a lot of bickering?
Finally, I have never heard anyone say “Wow, did you see that post on Facebook??? I believe I’ll change a core belief!”
I am certain no one ever changed their opinion based on a bumper sticker either.
Next week I'll discuss the new PMBOK 6 Risk Response Strategy of "escalate".
I am aware of the irony of a post on Facebook and Linked-In saying that opinions aren’t swayed on Facebook or Linked-In! I don’t suffer from cognitive dissonance. I am suggesting that aggressively advocating for your position while simultaneously insulting people with an opposing view is bad for your personal brand. As a minimum it is unkind to your friends! I am all for original content as opposed to cutting and pasting a link. I would suggest that my politically interested friends wade into the pool and start publishing their positions! Publishing original content requires scholarship and effort – go for it!