As I shared in a previous issue, I’m spending time every morning reflecting on topics and themes from the stoics — today’s meditation was something that I had to share with you all.
To infinity & community,
Are you angry when someone’s armpits stink or when their breath is bad? What would be the point (of being angry)?
Instead, use your natural reason to awaken theirs, show them, call it out. If the person will listen, you will have cured them without useless anger. No drama nor unseemly show required.Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 5.28
How many times have you and I found ourselves in “tough spots” like stuck on an airplane sitting next to someone with major B.O.
Or, perhaps, that weekly one-on-one with your manager who, for whatever reason, isn’t aware of how bad their breath smells?
Or, perhaps, it’s every single encounter that you’ve had recently with folks who don’t “get” community like you do; it’s as if they have the words but not the logic, wisdom, or experience.
And yes, sometimes it takes everything within us to not murder them.
Of course, we’d rather be pissed off, bitter, or privately whine and/or complain about these people instead of actually having that awkward conversation that might actually help the person level-up their understanding and help them become a better version of themselves.
Instead, we just wish that folks would simply (and magically) become better on their own, without support, help, or guidance (just like us, right?!).
As community leaders and professionals, we have to do much, much better, even and especially when we know that our efforts have a real chance of being ignored, discounted, or effectively written-off.
One of the best things that we can do, though, is to present our case through the power of
data — meaning, we can make significant inroads to bolster our case when we share practical insights that can be immediately applied for (sometimes) dramatic effect.
For instance, did you know that response time to a new community member’s first post has a dramatic effect on whether they will ever participate and share again?
In other words, as you can see above, after 18 hours the odds drop off the proverbial cliff and your team, community, and business loses a serious opportunity for deeper and more meaningful engagement.
Here are two more datasets that you could share with your team today:
Adding a literal “question mark” increases the # of replies. Period. And, the
type of question that you ask can dramatically increase the # of replies:
At the end of the day it matters not just what we do but also how we lead and grow community awareness within our teams, businesses, and organizations. We should be equipped with data at all times so that our encouragement and support can be easily (and quickly) justified.
When we do that we can use our already-heightened people and relationship skills to deliver value without getting upset or angry; hell, we may even “cure” their community-ignorance without drama.
That would be something, wouldn’t it?
Keep going friends.