The Wisdom of Tide Pools !!

I am a big fan of Social Media. I use most of the well known forums liked Twitter, Facebook and Linked In. I dabble in Instagram and Pinterest, and am always interested in watching other platforms to see what they offer. I think they’re an incredible way to communicate with people globally and they provide avenues to connect that we didn’t have in the past.

I know there’s a negative side to Social Media and the way I look at it is just like all areas of life. If you want to find the dark side of something, you’re sure to find it. I choose not to – ever. I use the great wisdom of Eric Idle from Monty Python – “Always look on the bright side of life !!” (double exclamation points are my addition, always wanted to be a Python)

The biggest challenge for me is taking note of how I use my time on Social Media. It’s easy to get bombarded with friend requests, likes, invitations, retweets, etc. It can grab your attention and take it away from other things. Let me share a story . . .

This past week I was on vacation with my family in San Diego. It was our first time there and we rented a condo that sat up high enough on a hill to see the rolling waves of the Pacific Ocean. We took in the phenomenal San Diego Zoo our first full day and I took tons of pictures of the animals and the park. The second day we went to Coronado Island and the beach. Again, incredible and tons of pics. I felt compelled to post a few !! The third day we ventured to Cabrillo National Monument which is a National Park.

Tide PoolWe decided to see the tide pools before the monument, lookout and light house. To get to the tide pools, you hike up and down the cliffs alongside the Pacific as the waves do their best to erode the shoreline every few seconds. It was physically challenging, but I wouldn’t have missed it. The views were panoramic and inspiring. We took our time and were careful as we worked our way over to the area where the pools were formed inside a rock ledge. As the kids and my wife were taking pics of their own, I leaned over one of the pools and said to my wife, “Debbie, you have to see this !! It’s beautiful !!”

And . . . then I slipped and slid down into the tide pool. I panicked and tried to push off the bottom, but never felt it. I was up to my chest (and I’m 6’4″) when I grabbed hold and pulled myself out of the tide pool. The kids yelled “Phone !! Camera !!” I yanked them out of my cargo shorts, but they were blank, black rectangles. My “swim” took less than 30 seconds.

I was safe but drenched. Everyone around asked if I was okay, and I was thankful I was. I’ve seen many posts from my friends about the need to be unplugged from Social Media and I agree with them. I’ve taken breaks, but I’ve never had one taken for me. It seems that my slip broke the chain I didn’t know I had.

When we got back on the trail to see the rest of the National Park, Debbie reminded me that I lost a phone and camera, but she could have lost me. I was only a few feet from dropping down into the ocean. A sober reminder.

The break was what I needed because it was life before Social Media and technology. The rest of the trip was better than the beginning !! We saw one of my past Eagle Scouts who is training with his brother at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista to try and make the Archery Team for the 2016 games in Rio. We climbed the California Tower at the San Diego Museum of Man and saw the Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park, and we enjoyed delightful food and picturesque sunrises and sunsets.

I was missing the reason that I post, blog, tweet, etc. in the first place and that’s the people in my life. I learned a great lesson from that tide pool. It’s not the technology that’s a problem, it’s how I choose to use it.

I plan to take this lesson to heart from now on.

 

You’re Involved !!

This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend the SHRM Regional Business Meeting with all of the State Council Directors from around the country.  It is one of my favorite events to attend in my role with the MAC.  It’s a fave because the group of volunteer leaders that attend this are “all in” !! They help provide direction for their State Councils as well as the SHRM HR Chapters throughout their State.

There’s real value when you’re around people who share the same experiences you are having.  This year the entire event had a positive vibe because people came wanting to have their voices heard, share their ideas and opinions with each other and the SHRM Staff, and see movement.  There was definite movement and I’m geeked to see the Society listen and act.

A quick side note . . .

If you aren’t a member of SHRM, or a local chapter, and you’re in HR, you should reconsider.  Getting involved yourself is how things get better.  The more you’re engaged, the more you can share your insight, advice and experiences.

We had a great example of how being involved helps you both professionally and personally.

One of the presentations was with the SHRM Public Affairs folks about Social Media. It’s funny, but as someone who’s fairly active in social media forums, you fall into the trap that others are as involved at the same level you are.  I know that isn’t the case, but you lose sight of this.

There’s been a real wall put up by those of us in HR involved in social media pointing towards those who aren’t as active.  We’ve done one of two things – we’ve either tried to engage and embrace them, or we chide them for not being as “fully” involved as we are.  Social media should NEVER be an obstacle to HR.

90-9-1 RuleAndrew Morton, who heads up the Social Media efforts at SHRM, gave the attendees a refreshing and different perspective.  He told us about the 90-9-1 rule of social interactions in communities and forums.  It states that 90% of people on Social Media observe (lurk) as their level of involvement in social media. 9% comment (edit) the posts and content they see out on these forums and 1% create content.  He used a great video (The First Follower) to make his point.

His contention, and I absolutely agree with him, is that it’s great to be in the 99% when it comes to Social Media because you are still involved !!  You don’t have to be the 1% who creates and shares content.  It’s a misconception and shouldn’t keep you from being active in the 99%.

The video talks about the Lone Nut and his First Follower.  It shows that there’s more power in stepping out and connecting where you feel comfortable. You may always stay in the 90%.  You may move to the 9%.  And, who knows, you might be one of those lone nuts who creates and shares content !!

The key is to remember is that you ARE involved already !!  So, relish that, leverage that and make social media a part of how you engage, learn and advance HR !!

 

V is for Victorio !! #TimSackettDay

As you scan the HR Universe, you hear a ton of skepticism, negativity and angst.  It can be draining and you sometimes wonder if there are HR practitioners who actually enjoy what they do !!

Victorio MilianToday, we recognize someone who is not only an example of Positive HR, but he also gives us a cool vibe, a social consciousness and a sweet mix of creative chaos !!  That person is my friend, Victorio Milian.

I met Victorio a few years ago at the HRevolution event in Atlanta.  He introduced himself in his soft tone and made me feel at ease because it was my first time to attend.  I was drawn to him because it was obvious that Victorio took the time to get to know you when he met you.  We jumped past the small talk of initial introductions and dove into deeper conversations.  As I watched him interact with others throughout the weekend, I noted that this is how he approached every interaction.

I dig my friend because he chooses to truly take in life, hold it for a bit, review it and then describe his experience in meaningful ways.  This could be when he describes his beautiful family or his deep love for his beloved New York City.

Victorio is an amazing HR practitioner who cut his teeth on doing HR in the retail world.  There are many HR pros who steer clear of the retail/hospitality world because of the inherent challenges that this industry offers.  Not Victorio.  He was in his element.  He takes risks and looks at traditional HR and recruiting methods with a different view.  The key thing in how Victorio practices HR is that he focuses on people first – every time.

He’s an incredible writer, thoughtful conference speaker and serious music freak.  He was key in encouraging me to start the #HRMusicShare hashtag and we share musical choices on a regular basis.

For those of you out there wondering why the HR Social Media community is recognizing one of our own today, that is what #TimSackett day is all about.  It’s always cool to shine some light on those that make people, and our field, better.  Victorio is definitely someone who does both of those things.

My friend and I still have in-depth conversations on a regular basis just as we did when we met years ago.  He is someone I treasure and someone you should definitely listen to and connect with !!  He’s one of my must reads on his Creative Chaos HR blog.  Check him out.

I would be remiss if there wasn’t some music involved to wrap this post for my friend.  I picked a tune that oozes with creativity, peace and cool.  Happy #TimSackettDay V  !!  Cue the turntable . . .

 

Carnival of HR: Make HR Better Edition !!

It’s time once again for the Carnival of HR !!  I asked people to submit posts and give their thoughts on “HR would be better it . . .”

I was honestly overwhelmed by the incredible response !!  This edition contains posts from some HR bloggers you see on a regular basis as well as some that are “new” voices that you need to take in. (Make sure you scroll through the whole page so you don’t miss any of them !!)

Before I list the links to these fab posts, I want to share how I’d make HR better . . .

Idea LightsIt’s simple and the Carnival is a great example.  I have this audacious goal to connect all HR people together around the world.  A great way to do this is to share other’s work on a regular basis as well as connect with the bloggers on purpose.  So, as you read the works included, follow the authors on Twitter, look for them on Linked In and connect with them going forward.  I enjoy each of the folks who submitted and hope you do as well !! Let’s see how they would make HR better !!

Gem Reucroft (@HR_Gem on Twitter) stuck straight with the theme and I dig that !! HR would be better if . . .

Doug Shaw (@dougshaw1 on Twitter) keeps things simple, yet profound with Three Little Words.

Keith Gulliver (@KeithGulliver on Twitter) follows suit with simplicity in Better If . . .

Kristina Minyard (@HRecruit on Twitter) encourages us to see if our perspective on HR is positive or negative in Pride and Perspective.

Heather Kinzie (@LeadingSolution on Twitter) jumps alongside and asks us to be committed in her How I Would Make HR Better post.

Justin Harris (@UnlikelyHRGuy on Twitter) asks folks to Recruit Different.

David Kovacovich (@DavidKovacovich on Twitter) wants us to have perspective on how policies affect HR in Is Policy the Enemy of Trust?

David D’Souza (@dds180 on Twitter) offers insight if you’re starting out your career in HR with Making HR Better (or not making it worse)

Mary Faulkner (@mfaulkner43 on Twitter) wants all of us to join in Making (HR) Leaders Better !!

John Sumser’s (@JohnSumser on Twitter) HR Examiner always has forward thinking posts like this one from Neil McCormick – My 2015 wishes for HR.

Jonathan Segal (@Jonathan_HR_Law on Twitter) shares his 8 New Year’s Resolutions for HR.

Maggie Frye (@Maggie_frye on Twitter) gave a step forward with the theme with her post HR Would Be Better If . . .

Dwane Lay (@DwaneLay on Twitter) moves us on the continuum of Resolution, Evolution, Revolution.

Nathan Hopper (@nathanhopper on Twitter) gives the theme a twist with HR – The New 4 Letter Word.

Robin Rothman (@robinlrothman on Twitter) adds great thoughts for Happy New Year 2015 and beyond for HR.

Jennifer Payne (@JennyJensHR on Twitter) is the facilitator of the fab Women of HR blog and she also has a look forward with 2015 . . .Welcome to the Future.

Julie Waddell (@jawaddell on Twitter) shares her insightful thoughts on I Would Make HR Better By . . .

Michael Carty (@MJCarty on Twitter) wants to see HR get more social on HR Directors need to up their game on data and social media

Neil Morrison (@neilmorrison on Twitter) about owning who we are in his post – It’s Not You, It’s Me

Joe Gerstandt (@joegerstandt on Twitter) asks us to be reflective on Start First With What You Believe

Heather Bussing (@heatherbussing on Twitter) shares resources and a broader perspective with 5 Books to Make HR (and Everything) Better

Sarah Williams (@TheBuzzonHR on Twitter) shares her view on How I Would Make HR Better

Ernie Tamayo (@ErnieTamayo on Twitter) breaks our filters with I’d Make HR Better . . . By Dropping the Millennial Stereotypes

Craig Farrell, a person looking to get into HR, shares HR Would Be Better If . . .

Chantal Bechervaise (@CBechervaise on Twitter) asks us to also simplify what we do with Back to Basics: Treating People As People

One of my fellow HR rockers, Peter Cook (@AcademyofRock on Twitter) puts a great musical spin on the theme with Punk Rock HR – A Manifesto for Better HR Strategy and Practice

Barb Buckner (@BarbBuckner on Twitter) shares really cool thoughts on her take on  HR Would Be Better If . . .

Liz daRosa (@lizdaRosa on Twitter) adds a positive spin on things with Let’s #MakeHRBetter

Joe Abusamra (@Joe Abusamra on Twitter) takes a talent angle with his post Stir the Talent Warehouse Pot – Nuture, Engage and Prosper

Lisa Rosendahl (@lisarosendahl on Twitter) wants us to look at things differently with Changing the HR Story

Neil Usher (@workessence on Twitter) has a manifesto that we all could follow !! – A manifesto for everyone

Elizabeth Lalli-Reese (@TXStrategicHR on Twitter) gives our theme a healthy spin with Start the New Year Right: Workplace Wellness

Mike Haberman (@MikeHabweman on Twitter) gives some succinct advice to us with Advice for HR to Live by: Just Stop It!

Ian Welsh (@ianclive on Twitter) looks at this year and ahead with How Can We Make HR Better for 2015 and Beyond?

Sabrina Baker (@SabrinaLBaker on Twitter) has an optimistic take on things with The Biggest Opportunity Facing HR in 2015

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell on Twitter) offers a great approach with Be a Lean, Mean, Creative Recruiting Machine in 2015

A fun and creative look at HR from Liz d’Aloia (@HRVirtuoso on Twitter) with Lead Like Carol Burnett

Robin Schooling (@RobinSchooling on Twitter) comes with one of our fave catch phrases with I’m from HR. And I’m Here to Help.

Broc Edwards (@brocedwards on Twitter) asks if it’s possible for Making HR Better?

Melissa Fairman (@HrRemix on Twitter) gives us The Only Quote You Need in 2015

Ben Eubanks (@beneubanks on Twitter) encourages us to Develop an HR State of the Union Address

Tanveer Naseer (@TanveerNaseer on Twitter) asks Did We Succeed in Putting Our Employees First?

Sharlyn Lauby (@hrbartender on Twitter) wants HR to Embrace Organizational Outsiders

Love Ben Martinez’s (@HRHound on Twitter) approach with 3 Words to Ditch Your New Year’s Resolutions

Kyle Jones (@KyleMJ6977 on Twitter) wants us to Be Better Than Yesterday

Fun and different outlook from Peggy Hogan (@PurpleInkHR on Twitter) with HR Would Be Better If It Was Purple

Brad Galin (@bradgalin on Twitter) keeps things down to earth with Improvement begins at home!

A unique opportunity for HR from Steve Brewer from Burrt Jones & Brewer (@honestdesign on Twitter) – Why doesn’t the HR Department have more of a role in workplace design?

And to wrap this great compilation for this Carnival of HR, Carlos Escobar (@cescobar on Twitter) with an environmental twist We Need More Plants in Our Buildings

Make sure you connect with all of these great HR folks !!  I’ll be checking to see if you do because I want all of us to Make HR Better !!

 

 

 

 

Join the Carnival !!

This is the “post before the post” for this week.  I am hosting the Carnival of HR for January this coming Wednesday 1/14/15.

For those of you who are HR bloggers, this is a request for you to help me set a new standard for this great forum !!  Shauna Griffis (@HR_Minion on Twitter) has been the faithful behind the scenes facilitator of the Carnival for years.  She asks people to host and I’m GEEKED to do it once again !!

I have a theme I’d like you to follow, and it’s this.  Write a post on “HR would be better if . . .”

To participate do the following:

  1. Write a post, or share one from your site, that fits this theme.
  2. Think of how you’d like to see HR get better !!
  3. E-mail me a link to your site at: sbrowne@larosas.com and I’ll make sure you’re included !!
  4. Use the hashtag #makeHRbetter when sharing this month’s Carnival.

Now, here’s where I want to set a new standard !!

HR BlogsI think people are great at sharing their own posts, but we don’t share the work of others as much as we could.  I am a HUGE fan of other’s HR Blogs.  My Feedly reader has 150+ blogs that I read and share regularly.

I have a wild, audacious goal of connecting every HR professional in the world, and I’m going to get there someday.  So, I’d love to feature YOU and your site to the HR community.  I’d like to have the most posts ever for this month’s carnival, and I’d like to hear from my blogging friends from around the globe !!

I’ll be watching my inbox to look for your submission !!  Join me and join this carnival.  It’s time to curate and create community and I want YOU to be included !!

The Real #FF !!

As 2014 draws to a close, we take time to reflect on what was and what will possibly be for the coming year.

For those of you who are active on Twitter, there has been a hashtag called #FF which stands for “Follow Friday.”  It’s where people recommend others that are on Twitter for you to consider following.  When Twitter was in its infancy, this was huge every Friday and you’d see tweets flying so quickly that your head would spin.  People were excited to connect and see who else was out on the social platform.

Inevitably, you’d see the same names week after week because, like any system, there is a bell curve of activity.  There are many who are very visible, active and they do a great job of posting their material and the material of others.  There are also many who “lurk” and watch what people write and post.  Nothing wrong with lurking because I’m assuming that you are trying to see what has value to you and this allows you to filter what information you like and avoid that which you don’t.

There is also a significant group of people who dabble in social media because someone encouraged them to, but they lose interest quickly. For whatever reason, it just doesn’t capture enough of their attention to merit ongoing effort.  They may show up in a #FF once in a while, but they rarely reciprocate.

Friends and FamilyThis isn’t specifically a post about Social Media though.  You see this past week during the holidays was filled with the Real FF – Friends and Family !!  People gathered from all over to make sure to see each other and catch up.  These times of seeing people in person has immeasurable value.  It’s great to hear new stories or relive old memories surrounded by warmth and laughter.

In my case, these gatherings are also generational.  There are Grandparents, Aunt, Uncles, and cousins of various ages and from various backgrounds.  They live in urban settings, rural settings and suburban settings.  It’s a broad spectrum that continues to grow as the families grow.

Getting together with people in person is energizing for me. To take the time to get to connect with friends is something I look forward to every time I get to go to an event.  I am a big proponent of the #FF movement on Twitter and try my best to keep active because I believe these electronic introductions can lead to meaningful connections and friendships.

Going into to 2015, I hope to make more of the #FF that I do socially come to life in person.  I believe that the more intentional we are in making these connections become a reality, we experience that “friends and family” high of getting to know one another.

So, be on the lookout !!  I plan to make sure to rekindle existing friendships as well as develop new ones.  I hope that you are one of those #FF folks who truly becomes a friend.  Don’t be surprised when I find you !!  It will be magnificent !!

An Oasis in the Desert !!

As I sit to type my weekly post, I am overlooking a beautiful mountain range that encircles the Las Vegas strip.  It’s my first time to visit Vegas, and I find it to be an incredibly intriguing human experiment !!  (That will be for a later post to be sure.)

One thing that strikes me though is that in the midst of a desert sits an endless series of skyscrapers, neon lights, constant movement and a throng of people taking in absolutely everything their senses can endure.  It’s like an oasis filled with people searching for something to refresh them.

After finishing the Ohio SHRM State Conference, I noted another oasis in the midst of a desert. During the hustle and bustle of the sessions, vendor hall, food, SHRM Store and entertainment, people are looking for something to refresh themselves professionally.  You see Social Media usage jump from literal non-existence to a robust life because people have to tell others what they’re experiencing.  It’s great to see people embrace social media, even if it’s for this short burst.  Ironically, there’s still a movement out there at conferences that wants to squish and limit social media.  In fact, one of my friends was attending another State Conference said that they had speakers (who weren’t on social media themselves) encouraging HR to not allow social media.  That narrow look at things kills me.

You see, I think social media is more than a platform for exposure.  Sure, that’s what many people use it for.  However, I think social media is the best method to connect, communicate and curate.  There is a hole in HR people.  They want to connect and become this amazing tribe, but they don’t know how.  It starts to bubble at HR events, but then it dissipates as soon as the event concludes and “real” work starts again.

OasisWe continue to compartmentalize social media as something that exists “out there” and is “for others.”  I’d like to see that change.  To me the first primary function of social media is to connect.  Before social media, our HR sphere was limited geographically both in how far we were willing to go and who we met at traditional gatherings.  Social media allows us to meet others who do what we do and face the same challenges and opportunities we do.  You aren’t alone !!  This is one facet of the oasis that is within your reach.

The next is communication.  Now we have the ability to reach out with the touch of an “enter” button to talk to anyone.  We have no reason to say that resources aren’t accessible.  People want to help each other, but YOU need to be the one who reaches out.  Sitting by your mobile device hoping someone will ask you for your keen and sage advice isn’t going to happen.  Reach out first.  It’s not as risky as you think.

The last piece is curation and it’s something that needs to start happening more.  This is more geared to my friends who are already well-versed and comfortable in the social media space.  People want to hear your voice and the voices of others.  I appreciate that people fill social media with content, but I see most people publish and not push.  By “push” I mean sharing the great content you see to others.  When we get caught up in analytics and how our numbers are running, I feel that we want see how our personal social media brand is doing more than making the profession stronger.

Be the oasis !!  Get information out to people and gather them together so that they are renewed and equipped to be able to do the good work of HR in their corner of the HR universe.  I want you to join me in making social media a platform that is more than just a series of announcements !!

People in HR are seeking the oasis.  Let’s start meeting there.  The desert isn’t really where need to be.  HR practitioners want to gather and come together.  Join me in making this happen !!

Be Relentless !!

This past weekend was phenomenal because I spent it with the 50 SHRM State Directors at the Regional Summit. It’s great for so many reasons such as developing leaders, sharing best practices, learning what successes others are having and the most recent news from SHRM itself.

The true highlight for everyone attending was learning from Jason Lauritsen and Joe Gerstandt as Talent Anarchy !!  They showed everyone a valuable tool with the Hack Lab.  Hacking isn’t “new” to the business world, but it is lacking in HR and in volunteer leadership roles.  The level of energy and creativity was incredible !!

They also highlighted their great work from their MUST HAVE book Social Gravity which break down the immense value of our social capital. When this session was completed, there was a sharing of take aways, and a vast majority of the group shared that they were going to work on being more connected to each other.

RelentlessIn fact, my favorite response came from the North Dakota State Director, Stephanie Winterquist, when she said she was going to BE RELENTLESS at improving her social capital !!

It made me wonder if others in HR would be relentless too?  I know that “connecting” is an overused plea in HR blogs, but it keeps coming up because people just aren’t doing it !!  As soon as the conference was over, and before I caught my flight home, I sent a Linked In invitation to intentionally connect with the folks from the SHRM Leadership Summit that I hadn’t yet.  This isn’t to gather more “friends” or “followers.”  It’s to find others who can be resources for you and for you to be a resource to others.

HR will sustain its relevance the more it’s connected !!  That is an undeniable fact.  So, you have to ask yourself – will you be relentless too?  I think it’s time for all of us !!

Some People . . .

” . . . are worth melting for.” – Olaf

My wife and I went to see Disney’s Frozen this weekend.  It is magnificent !!  If you take nothing else away from reading this post – go see this movie !! One of the best characters, and a real show stealer, is Olaf the snowman.  He is hilarious and beautifully naive and caring.

Olaf MeltingDuring a key scene, he does his best to keep Anna warm in front of a fire even though he begins to melt.  She is worried that he will be harmed when he breaks out the line that “some people are worth melting for.”  Yes, I was crying and I’m good with that !!

It made me think of those around me in my life that are in this category.  I’m very fortunate to say that there are several.  I’m very thankful that I’m surrounded with people who I value and would do almost anything for.  I hope that you have people in your life that you would “melt for” too.

In HR, I think we lose sight of this because our focus is often on those that may be challenging or frustrating.  We tend to slink back behind procedures, policies and processes because those things aren’t emotional, unpredictable and ever-changing.

If you don’t look at others as someone you would “melt for,” you may want to evaluate why you’re in HR.  That may seem harsh or extreme, but I don’t think so.  Olaf doesn’t see what he’s doing as a sacrifice, or something out of the ordinary.  In fact, it’s natural because he cares for Anna – which should be our focus on everyone we come into contact with.

This is also tough in today’s social environment because the majority of what is being written, retweeted, and shared is self-focused.  People beg and seek to see their name and their work publicized.  I struggle with this to be honest.  I love seeing the work of others !!  I learn from others and, in many cases, I’ve reached out to get to know the authors personally and not just treat them as some avatar that is unapproachable.

I’d really love to see this change on the social forums and in the workplace.  I think that if we had the approach that we would be willing to deeply connect with others, naturally, we’d find that the “community” everyone writes about would exist as a tangible, viable force.  This group would innately move companies, professions, associations and lives forward.

So, can you do this?  Will you join me?  Is this feasible, or utopian?  In the end, I choose to be like Olaf and put myself out there for others because there are some people truly worth melting for !!

Image courtesy of Walt Disney World for Grown Ups

Getting to Know You !!

This past week I was able to “return home” for Thanksgiving with my parents in the Village of Ada, Ohio !!  This booming metropolis of 5,900 people is my hometown.  I’ve been fortunate to live in many small towns throughout Ohio, but this is where I grew up.  I love coming back home because it is a mix of a small town surrounded by acres and acres of farmland.

We wanted to get out and do something instead of constantly eat, so we decided to take in a movie.  I thought we’d have to travel to Lima, Ohio (a mere 15 minutes away), but fate was smiling down on us.  The Ada Theatre in “downtown” Ada was showing Catching Fire which is what we wanted to see. I was geeked (as you could suspect) !!!

Ada TheatreI wanted my family to go experience the movie house that I grew up with.  It’s said that you can’t go back to your home, but that just isn’t true in Ada.  It’s a one-screen theater with wide rows and 300 red upholstered seats.  The admission was a staggering $4.00 per ticket !!  We decided to splurge for popcorn and a soda for another $4.25.

The whole experience was spectacular !!  The movie was great and the whole feel the entire time gave my family a small taste of the small town I was fortunate enough to call home.  People said, “Hi” even though they didn’t know you and no one was pushing or shoving in order to get their place.  Every seat was a great seat to watch the movie.

So, what does this tale from the Midwest have to do with anything ??  I think it’s very relevant to the whole social media “space.”

We spend countless hours on-line looking at posts, surfing Facebook to post all types of personal experiences, retweet items that we found interesting, etc.  But, we spend very little time getting to know the people we “follow” or “friend.”  I want to see that change.

You see, the more we get to know someone, then we can be confident in sharing their great content because we have more of a relationship with them.  I continue to see friends (real friends) who are becoming more and more sporadic on-line and I truly wonder how they’re doing.  When I get to connect with them, they’ll share how full and robust their lives are and I’m fine.  I want to get to know WHO you are and WHAT you do.

To me, the social media forums are a great way to share content and provide resources to the masses.  It’s essential that we do this intentionally and not just automatically.  Yes, it takes time to get to know folks – but what can be a better use of a person’s time than to get to know another human?

Seriously, what has more value than getting to know people better?  If you’re just about visibility and quantity, then you’re a persona and not a person.  Let’s change this.  Let’s make the forums we enjoy being on truly personal.

I think by doing this we’ll put out more thoughtful content, more insightful looks into things and be a stronger social community.  Don’t be surprised if I reach out to you to get to know you better.  I will take the time because I know it matters and makes a difference.

I hope sharing something happening in my life sets an example of how we can get to know each other better !! Now, I have to go !!  We’re heading over to Findlay, Ohio next to catch a basketball game.  I can’t wait !!