Social Media, Bird Watching, and I AM THE MESSAGE!
What can you do to improve your online communication skills in the social media landscape? ANSWER: Use your Bird Watching Skills! Knowing your personal DISC profile is where you begin.
We are all a combination of all four types of birds in varying degrees as we learn, grow in our knowledge, and understand how people are unique. Different isn’t bad, different is O.K.!
Learn how to identify each of the dominant BIRD styles when reading an individual’s post on social media.
The dominant EAGLES are no different when it comes to social media. They are direct and results-driven mainly posting their accomplishments and achievement. Now and then, they might post something about a significant individual that is important to them.
The interactive PARROTS who are enthusiastic posters tend to chronicle all the events of their day. They are the open book-type and freely share the good, bad, and ugly.
The supportive DOVES post less about themselves and more about others around them. They respond with empathy when others are facing problems, send well wishes when good things happen for someone else. Doves often refrain from expressing their true feelings if points of view are not aligned because they don’t want to damage any relationship.
The conscientious OWLS are the least likely to post anything personal. They usually share interesting articles or news stories they think others will find valuable. Owls are detail-oriented and know their facts and we can rest assured whatever they post is accurate.
Check out how each of the four styles respond to the same social media post…
A friend posts that her car was stolen a few days ago during a night of celebration for her birthday.
An Eagle may respond by providing the next steps. “If you haven’t called the police, do that right away and file a police report. Call your insurance company and arrange for a rental car.” The Eagle makes no attempt to empathize with the victim, but rather focuses on next steps.
A Parrot sees the bright side and uses some humor to lessen the stress of the situation. For a Parrot, “This may be just the time to get a new car! Think of it as a birthday present to self!” Parrots seize the “glass half-full” attitude but it can come off as being glib. This IS a major inconvenience, frightening, and most likely a financial burden.
A Dove will validate the victim’s emotions and honor their emotional state. The Dove might say, “I’m so sorry this happened to you. You must be so upset.” Though this is emotionally supportive, this is not helping the individual with information on how to handle the situation. Doves dare not to offend.
The Owl will respond with a link to an article of current auto theft statistics. They may offer a point-by-point check list on how best to protect oneself from future auto-theft. They may ask lots of questions to better understand the events. “Where did you park your car? What time was it when it was stolen? What did the police say?” The Owl will uncover the details without any thought of the victim’s emotional state.
Do you recognize yourself or someone else when reading each of the responses?
We each approach stressful circumstances differently. How you respond is a direct reflection of the message you desire to send. We must not forget, even with a written response “I AM THE MESSAGE!”
So…If an EAGLE posts about a problem, avoid syrupy sentiments and offer suggestions for a solution.
If a DOVE loses a family member, lend an empathetic ear and let them know they are not alone.
If a PARROT shares lots of pictures from a recent vacation, convey your excitement how great it was for them to have had such a great experience.
If an OWL sends you a useful article, thank them for doing so.
Always remember, we each have our own particular style of communicating…so do our friends, co-workers, teachers, and classmates…and no one is striving to deliberately offend or upset us. When you have a need and you need the other person to hear you, try communicating in their comfort zone and see how smooth it goes….