One of the great things about social media platforms is that they break down barriers, allowing easy, sometimes effortless communication among people. Given that we are social animals, social media and networking serve our innate drive to communicate — even in the highly cubical-ized, walled-off environments that many of us spend most of our workdays in. But is this spontaneous communication what business needs?
I had an epiphany recently. I went to a panel discussion on social media platforms and business that was gosh-awful. The expert panelists were asked to muse spontaneously on the risks and benefits of using social media in business, based on questions from the moderator — without knowing those questions in advance. One question after another led to muddled, vapid or unintelligible answers. I realized that what makes a well-thought-out answer so good is that it is well thought-out. Many of us can’t generate a really thoughtful answer on the fly. So, exactly how is using social media for business gonna help?