Everyday we hear in the news about reactions to social media and concerns how our world leaders will try to control social media. I recently came across an article in the Harvard Business review called “The Six Attitudes Leaders take Towards Social Media.” by Anthony J. Bradley and Mark P. McDonald. I found it to be a fascinating article because people usually focus on how everyday people use social media but not how our leaders consider social media. This is important because leaders-whenever its world leaders or business leaders, all have power and with power they can shape how social media is used and consumed.
The article says there are six attitudes that leaders take towards social media. The six attitudes are folly, fearful, flippant, formulating, forging, and fusing. The first one is folly-which is an attitude that social media really has no true value and it won’t advance the company in any way. I see this with small town business owners near my house who don’t try to put their business on social media. These are usually older adults who do not have an extensive knowledge of social media and see it as purely for entertainment purposes and doesn’t see social media as serious publicity.
People may confuse folly with fear but they are different because I believe the folly attitude stems more from ignorance while fear stems from the fear of consequences that might arise using social media. Political leaders may see social media as a threat to their power by uniting people against them and business leaders may fear social media because of bad reviews they might get on their company. I believe this the most dangerous attitude to have because it stifles growth whenever its for a country or a business.
The next attitude is flippant. A flippant attitude is where leaders know social media is popular and they try to capitalize on it but in all the wrong ways. They probably do not have a set goal for why they are using social media and will probably post funny memes hoping it will get attention.
Formulating is one of the best attitudes to have. A formulating attitude is when leaders know what they want to post and have a set goal on their social media. They understand the importance of social media and the bigger picture it has.
Forging is the next attitude to take after formulating. This attitude takes it a step further by joining in the community to promote themselves. By being collaborative it increases the amount of people who visit your social media so I think this a good approach for leaders to use.
The last attitude is fusing and like the articles says-it’s the most rare. This type of attitude has leaders not only communicate with their communities but works its company to how people work and think. The social media is essentially tailor made to the people following the social media account.
Leaders can have any of these six attitudes towards social media. I encourage to everyone to look at their work or any company they like and figure out which attitude towards social media they have. It’s inportant for our generation to keep using social media which will discourage fearful or folly attitudes.