“Come Get Some!”… Duke Nukem
So, there’s the guy I sort of know and, well, you see…
Let me start over. My wife is really good friends with a woman whose husband has a very similar position to mine. Oddly enough for reasons not pertinent to this post, I’ve only met the guy a couple times and each meeting was brief enough so that we really never had a chance to “talk shop”. I never ascribed much to this fact until it was communicated to me that the fact our lack of communication (with our being in the same industry) suggests to him that I am remote, inaccessible & aloof.
His comment hit me kinda funny because I pride myself on being extremely accessible to anyone who wishes to reach out to me, whether it be on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Email. My universe of friends, companions & colleagues (with very few exceptions) is connected to me through one or more social media platforms. In 2010, I actually take it for granted that everyone I need to communicate with or care about is digitally connected with me some way. As a part of my normal work routine, I go out of my way to memorialize even the most marginal relationships that I make via at least one of these platforms because each contact I make matters to me and it’s impossible to forecast which of them might prove beneficial or fruitful down the road. I strive to not have any relationships that are “like two ships passing in the night.”
Truthfully, I’m surprised that I’ve only once come across even a hint of his presence anywhere in my sphere of influence (and it was a very fleeting reference). Now, how one participates in the social media sphere is a personal decision and if he decided to play the game differently than I do, I can respect that. However, I would suggest that the inaccessible, aloof person is the one who not only withholds their presence from the greater community but won’t even use those clearly labeled channels to reach out and acknowledge something / someone that he felt needed acknowledgement. I also found it strange that I was evaluated purely through a pre-social media prism when most in our industry would acknowledge that the totality of a person must include their social media profiles & interactions.
In an old post, I argued that the schism between those who “take the social media trip” and those that don’t is vast and will continue to grow bigger. However, I presupposed that most people not “taking the trip” had no connection to our industry. Many more people are now “fellow travelers” than were when I wrote this post and I now make the assumption that anyone who qualifies as a “colleague” (loosely defined) will be trippin’ with the greater group. I really don’t know how to respond to someone in our industry who isn’t “with it”. The benefits of participating are well-chronicled elsewhere…people always have a reason why not to do something and I suggest that whatever those reasons might be are ultimately misguided.
If he ever surrenders, I’ll welcome him to the island with open arms…and I’m reasonably sure he’d view me in a different light :.)