I read this excellent blog post the other day – why the point of social media training is the conversation, not the medium. It links in turn to another piece by Immy Kaur, which sadly I cannot find a working link to – as soon as I do I will put it here. The essence of that one is that social media training should not mention social media. The training is for teaching people to communicate, not how to tweet.
I dare say that makes sense to some or even most of you, but just in case … let’s play my favourite game. Social media is a thing that we must be trained to use, yes? Therefore it’s possible to get it wrong, yes? Yes. Ok. So we need a social media team, right? And only they need to use social media, and nobody else is allowed to. Gosh, that sounds
Orwellian Borg sensible.
Fine. But hang in … people also use telephones to communicate. What if they get that wrong? The consequences of saying the wrong thing are just too dreadful to contemplate – better set up a telephone team, quick. Now! Before its too late!
And, oh dear, what about the written word? I mean, that stuff hangs around forever. While we’re at it we’d better set up a paper and pencil team, to make sure that’s firmly under control.
Right what have we missed? I know, chairs. People just don’t seem to know how to use those properly*. What if a visitor were to see somebody slouching, or spinning, and form an unfavourable impression? We can’t have that, can we? Better set up a Chairs Team to make sure nothing goes wrong there. Everyone else can stand, or walk about. Or stay home in bed, since they don’t have anything to do any actual work with anyway.
Have I reduced this to sufficient ridiculousness yet? Do I really have to keep going? We don’t need a social media team. Teach people how to communicate, tell them you expect them to remember not to be a dick, and then get out of the way and let them get on with it.
* I did once work with somebody who broke their nose in a highly amusing chair-adjustment mishap. But that’s an outlier and can safely be ignored.