I just re-read the blog Social Media Doesn’t Mean You Are Required to Be Rude. It was the second blog ever published here on DearKidLoveMom, and it is still one of the most often read posts.
As I begin working on social media for TEDxCincinnati (yep, I’m their social media person—you may feel free to be impressed. I’m personally thrilled and amazed), I’m looking at social media in a slightly new light. I’m working with new people and we’ve got a (mostly) whole new audience.
Because of all the newness, I decided doing some research about social media might be in order. And by “research” I mean re-reading my old blog and talking to a few friends.
Turns out, my wisdom from two years ago is just as relevant (perhaps even more relevant) today as it was then. As we become increasingly electronic (Apple Watch?), we need to be even more vigilant about what we put in our e-communication.
Tone of voice is easy to interpret when you can hear it (and by “easy” I mean you have a shot at getting it right). Tone of voice is very easy to misinterpret when you read it (and by “misinterpret” I mean make it be whatever your mood wants it to be).
Tone—in spoken communication—is about the speaker, not the listener (ok, a bit about the listener). Tone—in written communication—is about the reader, not the writer.
After receiving two emails this week from someone saying that I hadn’t given them the right information and replying to both that I had, I finally went over to the person. “Oh, I figured it out—you were right,” he said. “Glad you got,” I replied. “But please stop yelling at me.” “I wasn’t yelling,” he said.
Except he was. And I still haven’t really gotten over it.
My issue, I know. But his issue too. I don’t think he thought he was yelling. But I also doubt he thought through the effect his communication style would have.
A little thought and a little politeness go a long way.
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