Becoming social media savvy

Photo by Tanzeel Sayan

As I type this, I am currently engaged in two separate, on-going conversations with my significant other, several multi-platform conversations with my colleagues and a never ending barrage of meme spamming with my friend Toby.

It’s a lot to think about sometimes.

Which platform should I give priority to? Do text messages trump all other forms of communication? Are emails the only official way to communicate? If it’s worth saying, isn’t worth eye contact, too?

These are all valid, important questions to ask when we are thinking about communication. We have been bombarded – in the past 20 years or so – with so many different channels and platforms to communicate on that it has become an incredibly confusing landscape to navigate.

A lot of people probably find this phenomenon equal parts overwhelming and confusing. I get that. As someone who currently works in communications, I feel like I spend way too much time juggling various conversations across different platforms, which is mostly true.

Yeah, ghosting people can feel pretty harmless and like an easy way to deal with things, but it’s a temporary fix – and it’s a hole that only gets deeper with time. One of the most important things to think about when you are communicating is how your words are perceived; more often than not, silence speaks volumes.

I have taken it upon myself to create some sort of active game plan to deal with this problem as such and I would definitely encourage other people to do the same. Getting your professional and social lives all tangled up can be the hugest headache. It’s almost the type of thing you can’t turn back from, so unless you want to ruin social media for yourself for the rest of your days, I would try and keep the serious shit separate from the light-hearted stuff.

With that being said, if you have something heavy to say to someone, seek them out in a proper way. While most situations aren’t pressing enough to denote an immediate phone call, it’s never really a good idea to relay important information to someone on social media and expect them to be on top of that sort of thing perpetually.

Maybe you like to live your life on the edge and you don’t care about this kind of thing at all. All I can say in response to that is, fair enough. I can definitely see where that mindset is coming from. But in that case, I can also probably safely assume that you have never had to use Facebook for anything work related.

Regardless of the reason that you choose to be active on social media, it’s important to remember what these platforms are actually intended for at the end of the day, which is socializing. If you get stressed out by your notifications, maybe its time to go rogue for a little bit and stay off the grid. And if you are getting stressed out by notifications even without any obligation attached, it’s safe to say you aren’t well-suited for a career in communications.

At the end of the day though, so many things revolve around proper communication. If you are ever going to be successful and make a good impression on your superiors, being on top of all communications is one of the best places to start, regardless of your field.

Yeah, ghosting people can feel pretty harmless and like an easy way to deal with things, but it’s a temporary fix – and it’s a hole that only gets deeper with time. One of the most important things to think about when you are communicating is how your words are perceived; more often than not, silence speaks volumes.

Just remember that memes should stay in the group chat you have with your friends, your boss doesn’t need to know how sickening your sense of humour is and – by god – if you are going to leave people on read all the time, prepare to look feel like an ass.

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