Business leaders in the Spring of 2015 (at the most senior levels) are still not using social media tools themselves (even senior PR Pros). Yet there is plenty of data suggesting that when the C-Suite uses social tools, it helps them and their teams strengthen consumer trust in their company. The sad fact is that often C-Suite executives are unwilling to learn the needed skills or are simply just risk adverse.
Game of RISK:
In academic circles these same two issues are often seen as a barrier. There are some who only see social media (especially Twitter) as a tool for youthful and trivial interactions instead of for its untapped potential: a gate-free medium that can facilitate cross generational and cross cultural communications.
Santa J. Ono, PhD.
Dr. Ono’s usage of Twitter has been recognized as a leading example that academic leadership can harness social media to accomplish personal, professional and institutional objectives. This leadership has been recognized within the UC Community, locally in Ohio, and by researcher Dan Ziaontz. It takes a bit of fearlessness to present yourself to your stakeholders without a safety net; it is a common perception of social media that a tiny misstep can lead to embarrassment. Dr. Ono’s acclaim stems in part from his ability to market himself adeptly in the social media realm.
Ono on Social:
President Ono recommends that individuals, departments, and companies need to find their “authentic voice.” My impression of Dr. Ono is that he considers authenticity of voice to be a critical requirement for using social tools like Twitter. While Dr. Ono makes use of a variety of social networks, his reputation for using Twitter is significant. Students at UC have analyzed his tweets, and he has taken their advice to heart, proving that his use and command of Twitter are both dynamic and evolving. He informed me during the interview that a student in Canada is analyzing his Tweets as part of his PhD. research
“Santa J. Ono is the 28th President of the University of Cincinnati, one of the nation’s top 30 public research universities. An avid user of social media, he is also an accomplished researcher in eye disease. A new book called #FollowtheLeader (Lessons in Social Media Success from #HigherEd CEOs) says that with his use of Twitter, Dr.Ono “epitomizes the institutional champion” – ‘highlighting his university’s achievements, both academic and non-academic, interacting with key stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff, alumni, and partners; and also serving as ‘cheerleader-in-chief’ whenever possible.’ “