Back when indoor plumbing was first invented and becoming popular, I wonder if there were some outhouse holdouts who refused to use the newfangled sinks, toilets and showers. Maybe they considered water in the home just a fad. But once they realized it wasn’t just a fad, they longed for the good old days and those cold, late-night walks to the good ol’ outhouse.
Kind of like today how some people refuse to partake in social media. Now hold on. I realize that Facebook and running hot water are not exactly the same thing, but go along with my point, if you don’t mind. And, for the sake of this column, let’s deal with simply golf course superintendents as we consider those using or not using social media.
Love it or hate it, social media (SM) has become a part of our lives. This is a fact, whether you choose to partake or not. It affects even those without a single SM profile to their name simply because of the fact that most likely 90 percent of the superintendents in their area are using it at some level to their own advantage.
Like it or not – admit it or not – those superintendents not using SM are falling behind.
For those supers reluctant to get those accounts set up, the question of choosing or not choosing to use SM for the job is no longer a valid question. The real question has become: At what level do I need to use it?
I read the other day that more than 250 million people are on Twitter – 250 million! I am here to tell you (at least as I’m writing this on April 29) that I’m not one of the 250 million. I do not, nor have I ever, tweeted even a single word. So, as you can see, I can relate to those reluctant folks who don’t want to dive into this SM thing. I understand.
However, I do have active accounts on Facebook (1.3 billion users by the way), LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram. And, more importantly, I use those accounts. Although the last two (Pinterest and Instagram) are exclusively personal, the first two are a combination of personal and business. Facebook, especially, has become a tool for me at work. A tool I can use as effectively as an aerifier on the greens or a shovel in a trench.
These things are all user-dependent, meaning, of course, that you can only get something out of it if you first put something into it. They take time and effort. In many respects they take patience. But, just as it takes time to set up a fertility plan for the year, or do your budget, or program your irrigation system into your computer, setting up SM to work for you can be time well spent in the long run.
Getting back to Twitter for a moment. Just because I have chosen to not give in to it yet is in no way a statement against that particular media working for you. Obviously, it works for millions and millions of people. How many superintendents choose to use Twitter professionally I have no idea. My guess is the percentage might be fairly low compared to Facebook or LinkedIn. Seems to be more personal life driven than professional, but I can see the value of being able to communicate with a certain audience at any given moment.
I must admit, I can also see the value of not being able to communicate with a certain audience at any given moment, if you know what I mean (I would insert a smiley face here if we were on SM).
Social media, like good ol’ indoor plumbing, seems to be here to stay. And, as one whose great-grandparents had no indoor plumbing when I was a kid in Minnesota, I can tell you without hesitation that indoor plumbing gets a big thumbs up from me.
So, if you haven’t yet taken the plunge, you might want to start considering it. I’m not saying you have to dive in headfirst. But you may want to stick a toe in the water, because pretty soon you’re gonna look around and realize you’re the only one not swimming.