3 Ways for Leaders to be Absolutely Obnoxious on Social MediaDecember 6, 2013
Social media gives way for leaders to affect thousands of lives. With just one post, one article, or one small comment, today’s leader can radically influence the thinking of his followers. Needless to say, anyone who is in leadership should take great caution when it comes to their online presence. Social media can be used in one of two ways for those in leadership: it can be a powerful force or a problematic farce.
I say “powerful force” because social media can help you rally your troops, promote good causes, expand your network, communicate truth, and encourage others, all while staying connected with friends and family.
I say “problematic farce” because some people use social media to annoy everyone with their counterproductive thoughts and suggestions. I see it all too often from those who are supposed to set the example of etiquette and protocol. This is especially damaging in spiritual leadership. When a post is made, it cannot be retrieved. Oh, it may be deleted, but once it is seen, it has made its impact, sometimes to the detriment of character and reputation.
If you desire to have an obnoxious presence through the use of social outlets, simply do these three things:
1. Constantly Brag
There is nothing worse than hearing a leader go on and on about his accomplishments and achievements. Whenever a leader feels the constant need to be validated there is typically a greater issue at hand – an issue of the heart, a prideful heart. John Owen said, “Trying to be holy from a self-strength, carried on by ways of self-invention, unto the end of a self-righteousness, is the soul and substance of all false religion in the world.” I am not saying you shouldn’t share your strengths and victories, but when all you do is promote self, I assure you, others are annoyed.
Rule of thumb for leaders: Don’t use social media to glorify yourself, use it to exalt Christ and encourage others.
2. Constantly Battle
You have seen them. They intentionally stir the waters. They look for fights. They post comments with the hopes of getting something started. How sad it is when leaders, especially preachers (especially seasoned preachers) make contentious remarks with the objective to divide people in the faith. Yes, there are issues in every camp and denomination, but do we really think our problems are going to be solved by hiding behind a screen and blasting one another?
I am not saying we shouldn’t stand for truth. We should be willing to die for truth. However, to use social media to bring strife, division, and contention among the people of God is a sin. Let me repeat that: it is a SIN, and according to Proverbs 6, God hates it.
Rule of thumb for leaders: Fight your battles on your knees, and face to face with others, not in a closed room sitting behind a computer screen.
3. Constantly Bore
The last way to absolutely annoy your followers is to give them every bit of useless information about your life and ministry. The menial, trivial information that circulates social media is comedic. Who really needs to know when you use the restroom? Why post a picture of yourself staring in the mirror? Why must you constantly tell us where you are, what you are doing, and what you are about to do? Don’t get me wrong, leaders are to lead. They are to be out front, and by nature, people are certainly interested in our lives. However, if we are not careful, we can look self-absorbed, self-centered, and a little boring.
Rule of thumb for leaders: Make sure the information, pictures, and comments you share are for the promotion of a greater purpose and a greater Person, and from time to time, have something interesting to share.