A Human Connection on Social Media


Social Media. Do you love it for the way it keeps you in touch? Or is it a waste of time? Do you enjoy surfing Facebook, avoid it completely, or occasionally check it out? Are you overwhelmed with channels and likes and favorites and shares and retweets and links, or do you eagerly adopt the latest version?

For 20 years, you’ve heard us talk about the joys and benefits of making human connections — whether giving a presentation or talking with clients, friends or family. Yep, great things happen when humans connect with humans.

Enter social media. Yikes! Having experienced the power of connecting in person, how do we do that via Facebook (funny — they call it FACEbook), LinkedIn or Twitter? Shall we blow off social media because it’s not face-to-face?

Although it took us a minute or two, we finally launched our Facebook page a couple weeks ago. And, we’re figuring it out — how do you truly connect with someone when you can’t see them? Let’s go back to basics — they still apply. Where is our focus? Is it on ourselves or on the other person?

It’s so easy to forget you’re connecting with a person when you don’t see them. We’ve got to remember there’s a live person on the other side of that iPhone:

Say Thank You. Do like your momma taught you. Thank people for a recommendation or introduction. Say “thanks” for suggesting an article or video you enjoyed. Let them know the link they shared was helpful. Adopt an attitude of gratitude.

Cheer Them On. Celebrate their accomplishments. Woo-hoo their awards. “Favorite” their good news. Tweet about their ribbon cutting. Cheer their promotion. Be supportive.

Give Back. Retweet things your followers will find useful. Share connections. Add an article. Offer tips. Boost a blog. Provide resources. Figure out what people are looking for and help them find it!

Grow. Technological changes are exploding. Cultivate a willingness to learn about the latest technology and the ability to discern whether or not it’s a fit for you. If the new platform will make it faster, easier, better or smarter to connect with your followers, perhaps you should try it!

So, what’s working for you? How do you make human connections on SoMe? We’d love to hear from you — choose your favorite media mode!

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We “hangout” on Google too. 🙂

— Judy, Graceworks Portland

Tales from the Field

Tales from the Field

Graceworks talks about helping and serving others, but Skanska USA Building recently took those concepts to a whole other level!

In 2013, Tim Pham, a young project manager with Skanska, traveled to Kenya with a non-profit organization that provides educational and medical assistance for impoverished communities. As happens with many first-time visitors, Tim fell in love with the country and the people. He also heard about one village’s hope and vision for a local medical clinic — the closest hospital was many miles away.

Upon his return home, Tim connected with a fundraising group that was looking for non-profit projects, and the proposed clinic proved to be a great fit for their mission. A Seattle architect and firm worked pro-bono to draw up the plans, and in a matter of months, the group raised the money for the clinic.

The next question was, “Who will be the project manager?” When Tim volunteered, and the funders learned that his wife is a community health worker, their decision was easy. Tim approached his supervisors at Skanska who merely asked, “How long do you think it will take?” “No more than six months,” Tim replied. They gave him their blessing and ensured that he’d have a job when he returned. True to their word, when Tim returned this August, Skanska had a new project for him and he continued right where he left off with the company!

Just wow! Way to go Tim! And, way to go Skanska for not just building great structures, but for also building great community.

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