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« How Social Software Could Stall Social Business Evolution | Main | The Economic Value of Communities »

June 08, 2010


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Mike Baldwin

Rachel a great post and I agree that with the skills that you outline a (meaningful) relationship will be made. Furthermore a key social skill that is made easier in social media is the ability to maintain and sustain a relationship. All too often our relationships are reduced to a momentary transaction. Relationships themselves have a lifecycle with well rounded social skills they can be lasting can't they?

Guy Martin


It's interesting that while reading this, the some old discussion regarding social media 'expert' (gah, I hate that term) vs. community manager keeps coming into my head.

If I had to try to classify where I fall into this spectrum (for purposes of illustration), I'd say I'm a 'social media-aware community manager'. Ultimately, I believe I'm probably not alone in that regard, and I think your point is 100% valid in terms of knowing what you want when looking to hire someone.

For instance, social media-aware community managers are probably best at facilitating relationships in a number of ways, including social media, but, we're probably not your best bet to increase your company's twitter follower count (if that's your goal).

Someone with social skills can probably easily 'socialize' new tech to varies stakeholders within your organization (assuming some business chops as well), whereas a social media consultant is probably more likely to sit on the marketing/PR side of the fence.

Either way, attempting to plug the wrong one of these individuals into your organization (based on your own needs) is a recipe for disaster. :)

Rachel Happe

Thanks for stopping by Mike and Guy -

Guy I agree, this issue of social skills vs. social media skills does come up in the difference between community managers and social media managers. I actually know quite a few excellent community managers who barely touch social media - or participate in it very lightly. And indeed - it depends entirely on the needs of the company (and them knowing what they need) in order to make an appropriate hire - whether that is a consultant or employee.

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