Is it ok to mix business and politics?
With the US election heating up and only a few weeks away, I have seen a LOT of posts for both supporting and criticizing the different candidates.
Now, here is the thing, I have seen a lot on both sides (or multiple sides if you throw in independents, or here in Canada). And the problem is that about half of the people seeing your posts on social media agree with you and about half don’t. And the more passionate you are, the happier, or more frustrated you are going to make those people.
In the last 3 days, I have personally unfollowed about a dozen people. Some I have agreed with their views – others not so much – but it isn’t about their beliefs, but their overwhelming passion on social media is causing lots of positive and negative “drama” in their feed. No matter who you are supporting, there is always that one friend who totally disagrees with you, and they feel that they should explain to the entire world why you are wrong. This devalues your ideals. And honestly, can effect your social media persona.
Recently, there was a speaker at one of the political conventions that spoke on behalf of the candidate. The speaker was obviously nervous in front of the overwhelming large group of delegates and the national media. They stumbled on their words, and while did a ok job, may not have been happy with their performance. The issue came from the caption that placed with their title – it said “Vice President, Marketing” and the company name. So, here is the issue – anyone watching that presentation who is outside of the direct sales world, would not understand that the speaker was an independent consultant – as the title listed Vice President. They now believe that this person may (or may not) speak for the corporation as a whole. And in fact that is exactly what happened. There was a huge “hubbub” on Facebook that XYZ company would support such a candidate, and validated some peoples feelings about the organization, and disillusioned others. When in actual fact, the company does not support either candidate. The individuals of that company likely support someone, but they have been responsible and not publicized it.
My firm belief is that politics should never be mixed in business, and if you are an independent representative with a company and use social media as a way of promoting your business, politics should be left away from that too. You may need to find another outlet for your politics and passion, but you don’t want to turn away potential customers or business partners because of your views. Because once a person unfollows up, they are not likely to return.
Just my two cents! If you want to follow my un-politicial facebook page – please join me!