Is social media effecting mental health at work?
Updated: Sep 17, 2020
I've seen social media back fire on so many of my friends and colleagues through the years. Being 'tagged' in to things that they really wish they weren't, being caught out, being called out on their opinions or view. I have also used it as an employer, scouting people out when they have applied for positions with me in the past, which may have turned out badly for some. If I had a penny for every time I either heard a friend or even caught myself saying "That's it, I'm coming off Facebook" I'd be a very rich woman, but why are we all still there? Do the benefits of social media outweigh the negatives? When I grew up there were 4 channels on TV and the remote control was a knob that you twisted to tune the channel in, I also remember a coat hanger being twisted around to get a better signal. I must say that I am thrilled that I was a part of the 80's with less noise to contend with. Fast forward now 30+ years and today technology is at the centre of modern life and culture, from video cassettes to online movies, from cumbersome car phones to slinky take anywhere smart phones, from floppy disks to the cloud... where we have come to is incredible.
All of this innovation has allowed the world to be a smaller place and for us to spread our lives and businesses to a global level. It has strengthened the relationships between family friends and co-workers. Employers who utilise these networks effectively can use the power of social media to create an inclusive culture where they feel heard and it can provide a mental break for employees during the day giving a recharge that may be required to boost daily performance. What scares me is that I look around and I see groups of people who are carbon copies of each other, clones, from make up, hair styles, clothes and fashion. People in their 20's or 30's having botox and fillers - now marketed as a 'prevention' rather than cure. I have to think though - a prevention of what? Growing old? Isn't that just life? I see businesses where the distraction of mobiles and social media has decreased work performance and productivity, worse still where it is hurting employee relationships down to cyberbullying. Organisations are also more vulnerable to employees carelessly posting about the brand or company which could damage the name and reputation.
Social media is part of almost everyones day to day now and embracing it in the right ways can have a positive impact on employees wellbeing, productivity and performance. Thats said, this needs to be encouraged from an organisations leaders to ensure that there is positive use of these sites and that they are being used as part of a team, thus avoiding phones being sneaked under desks or in pockets. If used in the right way it can be a great insight in to ew ideas that your competition is showing, keeping your team up to date with ew and current ideas. Could it be a much more beneficial tool than we give it credit for?
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