Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Are you engaging employees? If Not, reach for your lipstick!

February 2, 2010

Anything you say these days can and will be held against you. No comment is safe. Ask Steve Jobs. On February 1, 2010 Mashable’s Stan Schoeder wrote: “What a time we’re living in. You can’t even make fun of your competitors at your own company meeting without your words leaking out to the Internet” – could not agree more. But what does this mean for employers in the Caribbean and how can we work with “management” to show them that it no longer matters who you are talking to – everyone is powerful and they know it. They (we know)”My MEDIA” will change you and if you don’t I’ll make an example of you – no manager wants that!

Arguably, social media has given the “worker” more power than we had since the words “strike” and “union” first became meaningful to business owners. At the click of a button, conversations, off key comments and (yikes!) opinions can go global. Managers, be afraid – be very afraid (crap – self included!) and thinking of firing someone if they do this? There are tips on how NOT to get fired because of social media!

So what can we do? Some (as I have) try the SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY. Reality? They fail – ask the Associated Press, Ministry of Defense or Steve Jobs that now has an enemy in Google because he did what all leaders inevitably do – talk ‘not so nicely’ about competition – except this time, the WORLD knows about it.

Today, bosses are being managed and their policies fail.

Why do the policies fail? Why is trust in the workplace now so low?  In today’s world where opinion is king, telling any digital native they “can’t” or “should” or worse yet “MUST” comply means one thing. They won’t and YOU WILL suffer for attempting to do same. Possible Solution= Assume the position and give trust first.

WHAT? Trust those 18-35 year olds that are wasting time on social networks? Yes. Consider it new wave employee engagement. Court your employees and, as in the first phases of a relationship assume trust or risk losing what could be a good thing. Seriously. What female/ male would “stick around” if on day one you presented them with a list of relationship don’ts? Its the same with today’s employees. Try guiding us. Tell us about what the company stands for and walk the talk. Don’t just SAY “the company” is better than the rest – show us how and inspire us to be as well – by being ourselves. Scary concept – you bet! Guess what, like the social media policy, this won’t always work either – but guess what, its less likely to fail miserably – chances are, they’ll at least consider moving towards engagement if the trust package and what you have to offer looks good.

In the Caribbean, we are not by nature trusting people. We have, will and do OPENLY and EARLY share rules and regulations as if we all comply with same – then work towards breaking every rule and taking the “do what I say” approach to management. Those days are as over as the days of one dimensional TV will be soon (3-D is coming and coming fast!). The reality is, “MY MEDIA” with “MY FRIENDS” will change how you manage and how you act – if you don’t believe me folks, dare yell or be rude at an employee with a cell phone…touch up your makeup first though because you’ll be youtube bound before you know it. Guess what, its legal too and the advice is online! Or worse yet, they’ll use xtravideo and turn you into a cartoon (note this link contains coarse language)

Should we warn them? What to tell your children about Social Media.

January 19, 2010

“Everything is a 9 days.” So is the ‘ole time’ Caribbean (Trini?) saying that even the most sensational story (aka Gossip) will be “top of mind” for a short time. I think its safe to use another ‘Caribbeanism’ to respond to that – THOSE DAYS DONE! Social media has not only changed the media cycle, it IS the media – so much so “media” is in its name. Guess what, just like the dessert cereals target kids during Saturday AM TV, they are finding innovative ways to target this up and coming audience where they live – on social media.

Think about it. If you have/ know a child over the age of 14, chances are they are more likely to have a cell phone and laptop than a bike and i GUARANTEE they have a Facebook account. Yep – moms and dad, even if you block it at home, they have one under a pseudonym (which they can’t spell either) and they access their FB at school, at the library or at that friend’s house where they go to “study”.

But they learn the dependence on the media from you and then tweak it to be more, well, you know…like cool! Not sure you’re to blame? Where did you CONFIRM Michael Jackson’s death? In the Caribbean, did you read the paper to hear about Beyonce’s concert in Trinidad or did you post a question on good old “FB” ? Where do you look at video clips about Rasta Phill from Synergy TV? Or, to scantily NOT address a story that proved the ills of “new media” where did you find out about infamous T&T beauty queen and fabulous fashion designer and overall damn nice person Anya Ayoung-Chee? The same internet sites you find cool, they find even more cool and develop new ones or find MUCH more effective ways of using them. Those kids GOOGLE EVERYTHING and, guess what?  Google, Facebook, Twitter,YouTube,  Stumbled Upon, Blogger and WordPress (my fav) have forever changed not only how we access information, but how and what we view as credible.


Well – the “9 days” of information being discussed, that’s over. Forever. Want to find a media clip from 2004 – check out YouTube. To my shock and awe, complete footage of my Miss Universe question travesty of an answer exists, is searchable and has been viewed over 65,000 times by an audience…an audience that gives COMMENTS! Urgh! President Obama’s “furtive” alleged glance at a female behind lives to be forever searched and viewed on YouTube (136,000 times to date)! Pero, imaginate (but imagine!) this is something not so bad…what if there were nude pics or pics of Caribbean Prime Ministers with ex flames or old friends that may be criminals…or what about that time, in band camp…(kidding). Seriously, our generation is barely seeing the “tip” of the iceberg when it comes to the indelible impact of social media and its impact on society AND WHAT GETS RECORDED AS HISTORY…well, will e-based history be considered an accruate record of what was? – that’s another discussion.

SO, what do you tell your children? Should you warn them? HELLS YES! Here are 5 basic tips for Caribbean (and any) child under 7 when it comes to social media:

  1. Watch Your Content: You teach them to talk. You teach them manners. Make sure that is reflected in their social media comments and updates. Remind your children that anything they would not want you, their teacher or religious leader to know about them should probably NOT be on their FB page.
  2. Picture Perfect: If your grandfather, grandmother or sister Sylvia from the religious Convent up the street (ok, they are up the street in many Caribbean countries…maybe not in T&T in in JA…) would not like the picture or place it up on the school bulletin board, don’t put it up. They live forever – especially the bad ones.
    Hate Em? They Live on the Net Forever

    Hate Em? They Live on the Net Forever

    3. Friends Should be Friends: If you don’t know them, don’t add them as your friends.