My brilliant and beautiful friend Suzanne has an inspiring life philosophy that I’ll simplify and paraphrase here: “think abundantly,” she says, and she means it. It’s an abundant life she leads; her practice of giving, recognizing, referring and acknowledging has led to many riches being returned. Hers is a wonderful example to follow in business and in life.
I think of Suzanne and her approach to relationships when I think about social media engagement.
When clients ask me, “how much do I have to do?,” “how many contacts should I have?,” “how many recommendations should I give on LinkedIn?,” “how many times a day should I tweet?” I try to give them benchmarks to follow. People seem to crave numbers. But the real answer is this: Give, engage, be genuinely interested and giving of oneself; of information, of interest, of feedback and interaction.
If you’re keeping score and getting your panties in a bind because you’ve been putting yourself out there, and you don’t feel like it’s paying off, ask yourself if you’re really providing value. Are you really engaging in a way that’s thoughtful, generous, authentic and well-meaning?
You will get out of social engagement what you put into it. If it’s not much, or it’s limited, bound by parameters that prevent true, meaningful interaction, then what you receive in return may have the same flavor.
Think abundantly, and be prepared to receive abundantly as well.