LIFTing Colleagues UP
There is value in encouraging your people and teams. Your boss. Your family.
If we’re edifying others as leaders, we probably do this regularly and are quite connected with those in our immediate spheres.
In the last few days I realized the value of encouraging another sphere of people that I think we often overlook. We may not necessarily work with them. We may see them from time to time, if at all.
These are other leadership colleagues in our social media circles.
There are many people that between the both of us we share no more than a “follow” status on Twitter or Google+. There are a number that I interact with semi-frequently on those and other sites, exchanging a comment or sharing a post with a simple “Thanks.”
Then there are my closest colleagues, in which I have both interacted via comments, emails, Lead Change Group, Google Hangouts, Twitter Chats, and via phone. We are all in trenches together, albeit differing industries, roles, and/or spheres of influence.
We are told that interaction is the key to social media, but it took on a new dimension over these last few days. Let me share:
Advice Becomes A Needed LIFT
A colleague of mine in our blogging community asked if any of us would look at a 1 page synopsis of her new coaching proposal. I replied that I would and after a few emails asking various questions, I told her to call me. What resulted was a great hour conversation in which we got to know each other more, our origins in leadership, and what our visions were for the future.
She posted a thank you on Twitter, to which I said I was encouraged by her vision. Her response amazed me, saying “Thank you! I needed to hear that today.” It seems she needed the lift that our chat provided.
Takeaway – encourage others and take the time to bypass social media once in a while. You never know how much of an impact you can make in someone’s day.
The Birthday Card
The next day I came home and retrieved the mail from the mailbox. There was a card with the address handwritten to me so I opened it.
It was a birthday card from a colleague whose company will be greatly assisting many of us in our leadership world in the weeks to come. While it was a simple birthday wish with a mention of the journey we will all be on in the coming days, it amazed me that she took the time to identify me and send me a card. I am a newcomer to the group at large, but she made me feel like a vital cog in our machine.
Takeaway – The small gesture to someone you’ve never met goes a long way in helping them know you are behind them.
The Social Media Connection
I use the LinkedIn Connection app on my iPhone. It’s a great app to help me know and remember the promotions, birthdays, and work anniversaries of my friends and colleagues. I always try to make the “Congrats” or other message a little more personal by adding their name and a few extra words. Earlier in the day that I received the card in the mail I sent out a personal message on a colleagues birthday.
Their response to me, amid the hundreds of birthday wishes they received, was very personal. They said so right in their message, saying, “Thank YOU so very much for your very kind birthday greetings. Forgive me for sending what looks like a template (it is not). I was humbled, touched and taken aback to have received over 300 wonderful birthday wishes that made this year the most special birthday ever. Know how much your wish, and the wishes of everyone made an impact! Thank YOU!”
I was impressed with their personal touch, and responded, “Friends and colleagues make the best gifts.” They agreed, and we deepened our connection and understanding of each other through that exchange.
Takeaway – Make social media, email, texts, and every electronic exchange personal. It will strengthen your relationships and build a solid community around each of you.
We each have a unique ability to impact our world and UPLIFT one another. Our colleagues, whether the person we remotely connect with or we chat regularly with, need to be encouraged as well. Connect with them in a special way and help them be inspired to reach new heights.