and people they like”
Congratulations! You’ve just received a compliment. Now what do you say?
Often we say nothing and just mumble and try to get away.
Strange that we become so flustered and confused as what to do when someone says something positive and wonderful about us or our work. We get oddly apologetic and explain our success as some kind of horrible mistake.
You know the thing, we dismiss ourselves and become all self depreciating.
“Oh, that? It was nothing”
“What this old thing?”
“Well, it’s not quite what I was after, but it will do.”
Why is it so hard to take compliments on board?
I’m sure there are psychological treatises galore on the subject of our general inhibitions, but I’m not going to go there. I’m not sure what your formative years were like or what array of skeletons you have in your closet, but we’re here now. So how do you accept a compliment sincerely and with grace?
1. Just say “Thank you”. Simple huh? Straightforward always works and brevity is good. Do not, under any circumstances, respond with negative comments. The other person is giving you something brilliant. Don’t throw it back in their face. Be gracious.
2. If your success is genuinely not a solo effort, give credit to the people who helped you. Be magnanimous. Also often it’s easier to talk about others than yourself. The bonus is that sharing success makes you generous, well thought of and more likely to receive future compliments.
3. Engage with those giving you the compliment. Shuffling off or mumbling will not endear you to anyone.
4. Give a compliment back if it’s appropriate. Be sincere, not artificial or creepy. This is not a competition as to who can compliment each other most. Getting a compliment is not necessarily an invitation to indulge in a mutual admiration society.
5. Smile! Compliments are a good thing. Enjoy them. This also shows the giver that you genuinely appreciate their sentiment.
6. Online you can use the same techniques to accept compliments. Respond promptly and with gratitude to positive comments, enthusiastic tweets, and encouraging reviews.
7. Pass it on. Even if you’re not comfortable receiving compliments (yet) they do make you feel great. Pass on the good vibes to others who you feel really deserve it.
Later (oh and well done!)
– you take this network seriously and have respect for the business world, and fellow professionals online,
– you know how to take advantage of the best opportunities, and
– since you know how to network online properly, this demonstrates clearly that you’re Internet savvy.Connections and future connections on LinkedIn will be impressed, and take you more seriously, rather than the opposite, which is to relegate you to Deep Web oblivion.
1. Complete your profile 100%. According to LinkedIn, by fully completing your profile, you will be “40 times more likely to receive opportunities”. Well I suppose they would say that, wouldn’t they. But even if that statistic isn’t quite that high, “opportunities” should be an incentive for you to make the effort.
OK I admit it. I waste time on the Internet. Photography and social media sites are my downfall. According to a study by Nielson – social networks and blogs count for 23% of total time spent online – (in the US – but it’s probably pretty much the same in most places). At least I can be comforted that I’m not alone.
But it’s hard not to be diverted. Especially when you work on your computer all day, it can be very hard not to be distracted by little, very shiny, new things. We all know that what’s happening on any of your three Twitter/Google+/Facebook/etc accounts is so much more appealing than focusing on paid work. And that new app/gadget/life changing device has to be scrutinized, commented on and shared immediately!
Without adding 6 hours to your day, how do you tear yourself away from all that sparkles on the Internet and devote yourself to paying work?
No painless answer. Sorry. The brutally honest truth is that it’ll require giving stuff up and some discipline on your part.
1. Ditch the myth of multitasking (I am absolutely not a believer, you just set yourself up to fail). No you can’t do more than one thing at the same time successfully. If necessary write a to do list and cross things off. Make a point of completing tasks before delving into something else.
2. Focus on the small goals that support your big goals. Get rid of the distractions that aren’t motivating you or helping you achieve your end goal. Are you using all those gadgets and online tools properly? Do they duplicate activities or make you pointlessly update more services?
3. Assess your use of Social Media. Are you really getting something out of it? Does it have a significant place in your overall marketing scheme and are you using it effectively? Be honest about this (and it’s hard). Often it’s more fun to chat and share than get any actual work done. Make sure your Social Media activities are (yep that dreaded but appropriate phrase) “fit for purpose”.
4. Be disciplined about your time. If you have to – draw up a chart, make a schedule, create a timetable and stick to it. Get a real clock and don’t rely on the tiny clock on your computer. Make sure you have a big visual so you are aware that those 5 minutes do go sailing by.
5. Stop playing games! Solitaire, Farmville, World of Warcraft, whatever. Those little treats you let yourself have as a break. Only after hours! Yep, you have to be a grown-up now (but only to a point!)
6. Chatting. Yep, stop talking so much. You have to be friendly and personable even online but be aware how long those conversations are going on for and be clear as to what is your agenda. Are you bored, flirting or is it really work?
All these tactics will require you to be conscientious and truthful about your working habits. The good news is, when you resolve to take back control of your time you will (oddly but ultimately) have more to spend it how you like.
So more time for wielding a big sword on WoW!
Now this is the article where I show my true colours as a Social Media Heretic.
I’ve written a number of articles about following on Twitter and you have asked me how to, why to and mostly what to do. First off, please understand these are entirely my own opinions. I don’t run a complicated stats package and I don’t use studies or fancy algorithms to back up my insight. My Twitter advice comes from 20+ years working with people and establishing productive working relationships with them in the flesh and online. I do know what I’m doing. I was manhandling online information before Twitter and before Mark Zuckerberg had any friends.
What you get from me is straight talking.
If you have read any of my previous articles, you’ll know that my advice is primarily aimed at small and medium business enterprises. I want to help you develop and maintain an engaging, open and positive relationship with your clients. All my advice is based on my mantra (yep here we go again):
However, I’m not exclusive and any and all my advice can be taken on board by anyone. It’s good stuff!
I probably spend more time on Twitter than most because I want to get under its’ skin and find out how it works for those of you in the real world. It’s my job to sort it out Social Media for those of you who want to part-take but haven’t got the time or necessarily the inclination. I would like you to be able to maximize your opportunities and enable you to use your time online productively.
So back to being a Social Media Heretic.
For SMEs (and most of us) I sincerely believe that it’s not about big numbers but quality numbers. This is why I don’t adhere to the more is more plan of action. I don’t slavishly follow everyone who follows me. Honestly I don’t understand why some people do follow me. They obviously haven’t read any of my tweets, visited this blog or gone to my website. They usually leave before the week is out. Yes, confession time here. People leave me in droves! OK a minor trickle, but it happens.
I don’t care. (OK it’s very nice to have loads and loads of followers. I do enjoy having a fan club that may or may not listen to what I have to say. I’m human, I want to be liked!)
What I do care about more is the people I follow. And yes many followed me first and I liked what I saw and followed back. The others I discovered myself. I’m choosy not a ego manic.
“Oh, but you’re so mean because that’s not very nice”, I hear you cry. Not so. I’m sure the other 189, 999,301 plus accounts on Twitter will find their own fans (in some cases I wish they would just go away but…).
Come on! Who has the time?
Really is it important to be followed by everyone including the cat’s brother? Wouldn’t it be better to develop a solid core of interesting and engaged followers who actually know who you are? People and businesses you can talk to/sell to/rely on/are interested in? My answer is yes. Your most effective use of Twitter is as an integrated part of your marketing scheme. So use it to it’s best advantage to find your particular niche audience.
I say this because I feel that you must always keep in mind the “Social” aspect of Social Media and this require dialogue, interaction, exchange. You know – being social. And yes, to use Twitter really effectively you have to do this.
The formal lingo for developing a compatible/useful/involved following is called “Organic”. Because it’s a selective process, takes a lot of time and yes you have to wade through some decomposing natural products to get there (nice euphemism eh?).
In the long run (and do keep in mind that all Social Media is for the long run, it’s not an over night quick fix), developing your home grown organic followership will be much more rewarding than 1,500,000 followers who only need you to make their numbers look good.
It’s not just a popularity contest. Twitter is a business platform. Seriously.
Hope this helps clear up a few things. Any ideas, objections, insights……you know where I am.
Another top 10 list (because you asked so nicely).
1. Keep your stationery drawer filled with things that you use regularly and that work. Ditch the dry pens, the used staples, the bent tacks and the dried up glue stick.
2. Organise and label wires: a) So you don’t unplug the wrong device when backing up (see 7) and b) if you move around the equipment in your office or take electronics off your desk you know what wires go with what item.
3. When arranging your desk, put the phone in the opposite corner to your dominate hand. For righties on the left for lefties on the right. Why? So you can grab a pen and write notes!
4. Date your work as you go because, no you won’t remember when you did “that” part.
Kidsbooks, Vancouver, British Columbia – 2011
5. Put stuff back as you go. Keep organised so you keep your work under control. Much easier and less painful than an emergency panic driven sort out.
6. Projects you have completed, old tax documents etc – store elsewhere (labelled and dated of course). You don’t need this stuff looming at you everyday.
7. Back up! Back up! Back up! – Do this regularly i.e. daily! No explanation needed I hope.
8. Your desk is not a giant in-box. Straighten your desk at the end of each work day. Not necessarily a clear desk, but a state of organisation that you won’t be inclined to avoid. Clutter is an indicator of indecisiveness not lack of time.
9. Take all your personal mementos and “executive” desk toys off your working desk. On the wall or a free shelf is OK. You can keep them in the room but you need the space to work and not distractions.
10. Eliminate homelessness from your office. If there isn’t a place for something, do you really need it? Honestly assess how big (and how useful) your “just in case” collection is. You can keep it, but you don’t need to give it room in your office.
Museum of Anthropology, University of British Columbia, Canada 2011
Bonus – Make peace with yourself. You are most likely your harshest critic. Keep in mind who you are trying to “impress” and give yourself a break.
I hope this help and if you have any ideas to organise your office for free, let me know. I’d love to add to my list 🙂
profile, then you can treat yourself