Archive for the ‘social media user guides’ Category
At the end of June I referenced Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard as forward-thinking managers when they founded HP. My thoughts turned to HP’s founders again when I caught up with a friend who works in the business recently for lunch and we were shooting the breeze over some Japanese food.
One of the things that came up was how less-experienced practitioners often didn’t build relationships properly or say please and thank you when doing outreach via social media channels. I’ve been pretty fortunate in this regard mainly because I am quite big, have a northern accent and a shaven head which tends to give away my no-nonsense approach, so I suspect that people move on to easier pickings elsewhere.
The conversation reminded me of a set of rules that Dave Packard presented at HP’s second annual management conference some 52 years ago which demonstrated the kind of smarts social media practitioners should have. Politeness and respect are central to Packard’s approach:
- Think first of the other fellow. This is THE foundation — the first requisite — for getting along with others. And it is the one truly difficult accomplishment you must make. Gaining this, the rest will be “a breeze.”
- Build up the other person’s sense of importance. When we make the other person seem less important, we frustrate one of his deepest urges. Allow him to feel equality or superiority, and we can easily get along with him.
- Respect the other man’s personality rights. Respect as something sacred the other fellow’s right to be different from you. No two personalities are ever molded by precisely the same forces.
- Give sincere appreciation. If we think someone has done a thing well, we should never hesitate to let him know it. WARNING: This does not mean promiscuous use of obvious flattery. Flattery with most intelligent people gets exactly the reaction it deserves — contempt for the egotistical “phony” who stoops to it.
- Eliminate the negative. Criticism seldom does what its user intends, for it invariably causes resentment. The tiniest bit of disapproval can sometimes cause a resentment which will rankle — to your disadvantage — for years.
- Avoid openly trying to reform people. Every man knows he is imperfect, but he doesn’t want someone else trying to correct his faults. If you want to improve a person, help him to embrace a higher working goal — a standard, an ideal — and he will do his own “making over” far more effectively than you can do it for him.
- Try to understand the other person. How would you react to similar circumstances? When you begin to see the “whys” of him you can’t help but get along better with him.
- Check first impressions. We are especially prone to dislike some people on first sight because of some vague resemblance (of which we are usually unaware) to someone else whom we have had reason to dislike. Follow Abraham Lincoln’s famous self-instruction: “I do not like that man; therefore I shall get to know him better.”
- Take care with the little details. Watch your smile, your tone of voice, how you use your eyes, the way you greet people, the use of nicknames and remembering faces, names and dates. Little things add polish to your skill in dealing with people. Constantly, deliberately think of them until they become a natural part of your personality.
- Develop genuine interest in people. You cannot successfully apply the foregoing suggestions unless you have a sincere desire to like, respect and be helpful to others. Conversely, you cannot build genuine interest in people until you have experienced the pleasure of working with them in an atmosphere characterized by mutual liking and respect.
- Keep it up. That’s all — just keep it up!
This isn’t about social media, although Shel Israel or Brian Solis would say much the same things with a sprinkling of digital pixie dust, these practitioners need to conduct themselves as mature adults and pick up a copy of Dale Carnegie’s How to win friends and influence people. This is cross-posted from my personal blog.
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I love the way new media and digital communications have become intertwined with political discussion. It will hopefully lead to a bright future of government, political debate, public interaction and general engagement. But It is important to remember, just because it is a public conversational tool, doesn’t mean you need to have a public conversation. People who use social media for reasons other than just saying hi to your friends, should be clever about it and aware of potential ramifications, especially people who are in positions of respect and power.
This was what David Cameron meant when earlier in the year he said that twitter could cause problems for MPs because tweets can be taken out of context or the MPs could get involved in conversations that normally they shouldn’t. These conversations are also permanent and can be dug up at any time.
It is with these comments in mind, over the past few days, I have been watching an argument between Kerry McCarthy MP, Labour Twitter Tsar and Shane Greer, the executive editor of Total Politics. Both of these people are in positions of power and respect. A senior and respected Member of Parliament on one side and a journalist who has a vast number of followers and loyal readers and edits a magazine with no-particular party politic on the other. People follow what both of these individuals say with interest and they, as a people’s representative and as a member of the fourth estate respectively, are in a position where it is important where they act and carry themselves properly.
But as you can see from this twitter conversation, things have become a bit out of hand. Remember this all started over what music people should like as a display of their political ideals.
I won’t go into detail about what each said, but to be sure, it has clearly been a case of misrepresentation by both parties. Kerry McCarthy is at fault because she took the bait. But what is concerning is she has taken the bait before as you can see from these conversations with Nadine Dorries MP. In this case, as the Labour Twitter Tsar, Kerry should know better.
Shane Greer is at fault because from what I read, he is being antagonistic from the start. Reacting to a reasonably irreverent comment from Kerry, Shane has gone overboard. The tweet that made Shane bite was “@wallaceme @shanegreer To use that well-worn political phrase, I’m not taking any lessons about Northern Ireland from you two. Or music.”
As you can see, Shane went into a diatribe about being from Northern Ireland and his time there which sounds awful. But if Kerry hasn’t met him or heard his accent and she is right, there is no reason for her to research Shane’s birthplace or personal history. She is also right to suggest it is fairly egotistical to suggest she should know his heritage and she is right to not apologise. He then proceeded to blog about it with gusto.
A spat between these two is fine, it happens. But when these two started off at each other, each others followers and supporters joined in and attacked each other. Together they produced this;
As I said, both of these people are in positions of power and respect. Arguments like this turn people off politics, getting involved at the local level and engaging. As you can see, it is a pack mentality, but that is politics, but sometimes, someone needs to be the adult.
This whole argument won’t have any severe ramifications. It won’t lead to resignations and won’t even make the news. But it turns people off. As I said, it is important that people use social media conversational tools wisely.
What are your thoughts?
Cross posted with my own blog.
Tags: kerry mccarthy, obnoxio the clown, politics, shane greer, social media, tory bear, total politics, Twitter
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The Government has published its Template Twitter Strategy for Government Departments (even more impressively, it is available for download on a Scribd page), suggesting to civil servants to begin tweeting and explaining how to do it, with the ultimate aim of improving public engagment.
The document is a really interesting, well put-together twitter template. It sets out pros and cons, twitter stats, a glossary and a reasonably significant list of influential twitter uses including journos, departments, MPs. It also has devised twitter objectives and metrics, which I’m sure will spur plenty of debate amongst bloggers and tweeters.
Written by Neil Williams (a.k.a @neillyneil), a self admitted “Web strategy geek at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills,” the document advises civil servants, particularly those from the digital comms teams, to tweet on departmental campaigns, news releases, ministerial announcements, highlighting content on other social media platforms such as YouTube and even asking and answering questions.
Amazingly, this all means that civil servants will be crawling out of the shadows of Whitehall and will have a face, albeit a digital one. By encouraging interaction, there will be a transparency and two-way communication that, possibly, has never existed in Whitehall before.
Tom Watson MP, the first blogging Parliamentarian and avid social media nut, was also on the Today programme on Radio 4, spruiking the benefits of social media and, in particular Twitter, as a method of communication and interaction.
Tom Watson also made the point that many old mandarins still get their secretaries to print out the mandarin’s emails for review.
MPs are similar; we are currently surveying Parliamentarians and politicos about the use of twitter in Westminster. There are indeed MPs like Tom Watson, who was among a number of MPs on the Independent’s list of influential parliamentarian twitter, who are actively involved on the blogosphere and many of those listed have actively participated in our survey. But the truth is many still don’t get it and don’t see the point.
But surely, strategies like this show that social media has been adopted by the main stream and the idea that social media is just for kids, computer geeks and a small sector of society is no longer true. The powers that be have recognised the revolution will be digitalised and they have no choice but to get on board.
If you are interested in this issue and you would like to take our survey on the use of twitter in Westminster and Whitehall, we would more than appreciate your comments. http://bit.ly/10sf8B
Tags: civil servants, Government, MPs, neillyneil, template twitter strategy for government departments, Twitter, westminster, Whitehall
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Well, it has happened, the first big UK political name has been brought down by British bloggers. I won’t go into a detailed discussion on the events because if you are reading this post, you will likely know the story (here is a good synopsis here in the Telegraph). But to quickly recap, Damian McBride, a senior figure within Downing Street, albeit behind the scenes, has been brought down by the power of blogging and it looks like another senior Labour character, Derek Draper, is also losing in the battle of the bloggers between his blog, Labour List and Paul Staines, who runs the conservative blog, Guido Fawkes.
The point I want to make here, instead of getting into the history of “Emailgate”, is that both Labour and the Tories are seemingly struggling to understand how to campaign online and their efforts seem all very ad hoc with no real direction. Draper himself admitted only in February that he didn’t know the difference between “my RSS from my elbow” and from my standpoint, there has very little positive interaction with the voting public so far. While Guido Fawkes, as the name suggests, is just trying to bring down the Labour Government, although his aim is to replace it with a Conservative one and doesn’t have the anarchic goals of his namesake.
Its obvious Labour has set up their web presence to try and get some kind of Obamaesque traction on the blogosphere and from voters, after all, I may be cynical, but it is an awfully big coincidence that Draper and Co. devised Labour List in November, around the time of Obama’s victory. And as I have mentioned in a previous blog, the Conservative’s seem to be behind in this regard.
However, Labour List, Guido Fawkes and Iain Dale, another high-profile Conservative blogger, seem to just snipe and battle each other from across the political spectrum. While this is interesting from the point of view of a political junkie like myself, Becky McMichael, a colleague and fellow blogger, put it perfectly - they are just preaching to the converted.
There is no real engagement, no real message, no grass roots campaigning, no real harnessing of support from people who don’t already support either party.
There is a new post on Labour List by Mark Hansen titled “Labour is gaining fast online: Don’t let Guido wreck it“, where the author states “Just ten days ago a ragbag group of Labour bloggers and campaigners was gathered (organised by Derek Draper) to offer ideas as to how to build the resources on Labourlist and make it more useful to Party members at constituency level. How to build this Labour-minded community.”
Mr Hansen has summed up Labour’s and the other party’s problem quite succinctly without knowing it - they are trying to engage with Party members and registered supporters. These people won’t win you an election, it is the swinging voters who get you elected, any student of electoral politics will tell you that. They must deliver their message outward, not just inward.
Peter Mandelson wrote in his first blog on Labour List about new media and the fact that “we have to recognise that the days of command and control are over. Instead we need to learn to embrace and engage.” I guess they are still learning.
Cross posted with my personal blog.
Tags: blog, Conservatives, Damian McBride, Derek Draper, e-campaigning, emailgate, Guido Fawkes, Iain Dale, labour, labour list, Mandelson, Mark Hansen, online campaiging, Paul Staines, web 2.0
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