REACTING IN REAL TIME
As humans, we are all made of a set of communication characteristics that activates according to the situations in which we are involved in at specific moments of our lives. We have inner “colorful little people” who, at times, can be demanding, friendly, angry, cheerful, opinionated, helpful, fearful or frustrated. Something like the awarded movie “Inside Out”.
Having a combination of such an array of emotions that we depend on to express ourselves in different situations which trigger specific reactions and feelings, can be hard to control at times, but fortunately, with experience and time, we learn to find a balance between all of these spontaneous emotions, maintaining a civilized purpose on our communication and relationships at all levels.
This characteristic, which is usually learned during the interpersonal relationships evolution process, can be mastered up to the point where a person is capable of speaking on behalf of another person, group, cause, community, or brand. We all call this a “Public Relations” oriented feature. Some are born with the skill, some are made for the skill.
People with this skill have the ability to put their reactions on hold while assessing a situation to think about the best route of approach. Social networks have encouraged a sense of quick reaction which can be challenging even for those with this type of capability, making them react, or overreact when they find themselves in certain situations that trigger an automatic response.
During the first stages of my social media training almost 7 years ago, I was introduced to the infamous trolls that surf the internet looking for trouble. They became pretty popular, and feared, among forums where they were known for setting the standards of heated discussions, pressing everyone’s buttons, and leaving a trail of riot and chaos in their wake.
They continue their paths of destruction on social media networks nowadays, and that is why keeping a cold head when interacting publicly, be it personally or on behalf of someone or something else, can be decisive for keeping a clean reputation but most importantly, peace of mind.
This is all to say that no matter when you, or a person, community or brand that you represent, is seemingly attacked or challenged publicly, it is always better to do a careful ground research, learn the facts, investigate who is your “provoker”, make an effort to find out the reasons of her/his behaviour, discard the trolls, and gauge the appropriate response before throwing yourself in a tricky game of public dispute. In general, those who strike, usually do it just for fun.