JRM 327 Reflection

Screen Shot 2017-04-26 at 9.16.09 PMTo be honest, when I entered my first ever #JMCawesome class this semester, I was not sure what to expect. The class title of “Social Media” seemed a little broad to me, but it was definitely a topic I had interest in learning more about.

Today, I have no regrets about enrolling in JRM 327. Social media is such an important part of our culture, and having the opportunity to get a broad overview of how it works was truly a pleasure. I went into this class with a conception that social media was a powerful tool that was often misused. After taking this class, I feel like I now have a better idea of how to use social media in an appropriate and beneficial way, whether I’m running accounts for a company or building my own personal brand.

I think one of the most useful parts of this class was our unit on LinkedIn. In the Heider College of Business, they preach how having a professional LinkedIn page can give you an advantage in the business world. Going into this unit I thought that I was an expert in LinkedIn. However, I quickly found there were many ways to make my profile more professional and engaging. Additionally, I was amazed to see how many of my classmates had never even been on LinkedIn before. I would definitely recommend keeping that part of the class as an introduction to a social media platform that is important for career building.

Creighton NCAA Tournament #1Another part of the class I thoroughly enjoyed was using Canva. I have always had an interest in graphic design but never really took the initiative to try it out. Also, I have always thought that using visual assets on social media was a very appealing way of posting. I never thought it would be so easy to create content like this, which is why I loved getting creative with Canva. To have the experience to have a (very brief) introduction to graphic design and get practice with a new tool was great.

Even as a business student, I feel the media skills I learned in this class will pay dividends for me in the future. In fact, multiple employers I have interviewed with have been impressed that I have taken a full course devoted to developing social media skills. Overall, this has been a very worthwhile class experience that I would recommend to others.

Public shaming in social media

Public shaming has become a mainstay in social media. With the frequency888_1_sad-twitter-logo of news being published and shared, it allows people to easily jump to conclusions. This is especially relevant when negative stories are released about individuals. People are quick to leave nasty comments, tweets and posts about the accused individual. This was especially relevant in the case of Justine Sacco,  whose life was essentially changed forever with one tweet that was meant to be a joke. Now, I’m not defending Justine’s behavior and reckless style of tweeting. But, her case is a great example of how ruthless and unforgiving the internet can be when a normal person makes a simple mistake.

It’s okay to criticize people. It’s okay to disagree with people. But when cross the line of disagreement and criticism into personal and communal attacks, that’s where it becomes cyberbullying. When you find something on social media that angers or upsets you, it’s best to just take a step back, and evaluate the situation before hitting send. Social media makes it difficult for anyone to recover from being responsible for a post that others may find offensive, which makes using common sense the most effective posting strategy.

Monica Lewinsky says in her TED Talk that, “cruelty to others is nothing new, but online, technologically enhanced shaming is amplified, uncontained, and permanently accessible… millions of people, often anonymously, can stab you with their words, and that’s a lot of pain.” The internet has allowed a whole new realm of put downs, insults, and bullying. Luckily, there are initiatives like TrollBusters that are aiming to weed out many of these harmful comments. Still, we have a lot of work to do as a society in our use of social media if we’re going to work towards being more a compassionate and understanding social network. There is not any practical solution than just setting an example of love, compassion and understanding in your social media use.

A sentence is worth a thousand words

“A great man is a sentence.”

These were the words uttered by Clare Boothe Luce to President John F. Kennedy in 1962. In his book “A Whole New Mind”, Daniel Pink asks two primary questions that cover the same agenda as Luce. What’s my sentence? Am I better than I was yesterday?

It’s difficult to evaluate yourself in a single string of thoughts compacted into a sentence. But if you know yourself well enough, you know what is important to you and what makes you, you.

My sentence: A young adult hungry to make a tangible difference in the world while chasing his passions.

Let’s break that down.

Being a 20-year old at a Jesuit University like Creighton has given me an incredible opportunity to explore myself in a period of self-discovery. In just my short year in a half at Creighton, I have learned so much about my soul, body and mind.

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Photo Courtesy of Cece Chen, http://www.freeimages.com/photo/mackinac-bridge-from-the-car-2-1224127

I feel like this sentence fully encapsulates the person I am and the person I am becoming. I am determined to use my gifts and talents in two ways in my career: to find a job that I love in an industry I’m passionate about, and to make a positive impact in my community.

 

The ever-connected world of social media gives me an incredible opportunity to build a personal brand that will help me achieve these goals. It is easier now, more than ever before, to get your name and your brand out there by using social media effectively.

One thing, that remains the same in the media, PR, marketing, etc. is that people can recognize two things: integrity and quality. These are perhaps the two most important things when building a personal brand. If you’re not honest and trustworthy, people are not going to want to work with or associate with you. And if you don’t do a thorough and quality job, you’re not going to have favorable reviews from your boss and your peers.

While I certainly have a long way in discovering who I am, this exercise is definitely helpful way to step back and do some self evaluating.