Some of you who are friends on Facebook or follow me on Twitter know that on my return from Israel Air Canada lost my bag. After a prolonged period on the phone I became concerned that my bag might be permanently missing and didn’t have any reason to think the Air Canada personnel I was speaking with were going to be much help. I posted an SOS of sorts on Facebook and Twitter hoping someone knew somebody at Air Canada who could help. I wasn’t looking for “who to complain to”; I was looking for someone competent to help me find my bag (it was recovered eventually).
I had one person with a direct connection to executives at Air Canada respond immediately (I did not need to make use of those connections). I had a friend in Canada weigh in with his experiences with Air Canada. And I got a phone call from a speaker buddy who was working in Canada and willing to use her connections there to help. In sort, I got great assistance very quickly.
Social media has many benefits, but the ability to get the right information from the right people quickly is key. Sincerely and prudently asking for help (but yes, it can be overdone) is a powerful tool in the new age of connectivity.
Connectivity. I just used the word because it is part of our vocabulary. But sometimes is sounds a bit sterile. We have an older word for the same thing. It applied before there was an internet and it applies today. Only the technology has changed. The word is community.
Community is about personal connection and people who care helping when they can. And that’s what makes social media great.