Functional Literacy was a term popularized in the 1950’s by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) to define training adults to be able to ‘meet independently the reading and writing demands placed on them’. (1) In addition to reading, writing and math skills, I believe that now, in the 21st century, business professionals need to have at least a basic understanding of, and ideally a basic proficiency in, social media.EVERY Business Professional needs to have at least a basic understanding of social media Click To Tweet
This means that professionals should understand HOW social media works and be able to create and maintain a basic presence on the platforms that are relevant to their industry. Yes, it would be great if every business blogged and tweeted and took photos and video for Instagram but for many professionals, this can seem overwhelming and/or an unreasonable addition to their already packed work day. My goal is to help you understand how these tools work, so you can decide how YOU can best use them to meet YOUR goals.
Many people view social media as an ADDITIONAL series of tasks they need to ADD to their daily routine. If you currently do absolutely NO marketing, lead generation, reputation building and/or networking, well then yes, these tasks may be new to you. But my guess is that if you do have a business or professional presence of any kind, you do already engage in one or more of those activities and social media can actually HELP you with any and all of them. In many cases, social media can help you more effectively do these tasks, saving you time and extending your reach.
I worked in corporate America during the 80’s and 90’s and remember older executives who refused to bother with email, having their secretaries (remember those?) print out the contents of their inboxes and send the replies for them. While a few of those executives may still be out there, I am sure, as a 21st century professional, you see the absurdity in ignoring email as a business tool. Ignoring Social Media is just as absurd.
This does NOT mean that I am advocating spending mindless hours on Facebook or starting to Snapchat photos of your every meal! I am suggesting that you join us for a class, live or virtually, so you at least UNDERSTAND how the various platforms work, how others are using them and how YOU can use these to professionally network, build your personal brand and your company’s bottom line.
As we start this ‘Back to School’ season, I will be offering a series of webinars to help anyone who may feel ‘too old for Social Media’ to gain the basic skills and understanding that they need to become Functionally Literate when it comes to Social Media. It will be a brief overview of some of the more popular platforms with an emphasis on HOW they can be used for business.
I will also offer the program as a live workshop in the NYC and Northern NJ areas and as a private webinar for individuals and small groups who would like a program customized to their industry or specific goals.
Wishing you a strong Q4!