Saturday, May 2, 2009

Hi guys,
Happy Saturday to you all!

On Thursday I had myself a real scare – I was booted off Facebook for about 24 hours!

At first, I totally panicked. With little more than one month to go before my book launch and much of my networking and communicating with people from around the globe depending on Facebook, this was a disaster!
Loosing all of my Facebook “pages” including my speaker group, my book Page, my Networked Blog and not least my personal profile, was a HUGE blow. The thought of hundreds of hours spent in vain “meeting” people and building an online platform made me squirm in my seat. Arrrrrrgh!!!!

But then I made a smart move. OK, it’s hard to tell if this is what did it for the Facebook Police but I suspect that at least it played a part.

I calmed myself down and instead of complaining about what had happened and playing the victim, I wrote a VERY nice, understanding and polite mail to the powers that be.
In that mail I proclaimed my innocence, of course, in the nicest possible way. I also deeply apologized for any perceived wrongdoing on my part, and promised that I would promptly inform myself better about their rules and user guidelines and conduct myself more appropriately in the future.

Did I mean every word that I wrote? Well…probably not. I was kinda miffed, to be honest, especially because I was not quite sure what it was that I was supposed to have done wrong. But I was well aware that an “attack” at this point was not a good tactic. After all, I had to think about my objective which was clearly to be allowed back on Facebook, to be reinstated, every page intact!

I knew that many had found themselves in similar situations, and that this would indicate that perhaps the Facebook people were somewhat ambiguous about communicating their rules to people before it was actually too late - but this fact I chose to keep to myself at this point.

Why am I telling you this?

My point is that although my heart was pounding double time and I was in fact quite upset at first, I made a conscious effort to “meet” with these people on their turf. I made a point out of telling them how much I appreciated Facebook, how important it was to me to have this wonderful, organic way of connecting with friends and family and people I work with all over the world. I thanked them for making me aware of their guidelines instead of freaking out that they simply shut me down!

The whole thing made me think of how we as speakers, or let me simply say communicators, deal with difficult situations or indeed difficult people when we work. You know what I mean, those endlessly disruptive “I know better” types, commonly referred to as “hecklers”.

When dealing with a heckler, the last thing you wanna do is get upset and try to defend yourself.
If you do, you’re playing right into the heckler’s hands.

Best thing to do is simply to ignore them, or quickly put them straight once and for all (in the nicest possible way of course) so that they look silly, not you. You could also invite them to state their case after you’re done stating yours. I’ve done this often and mostly it turned out that this was really not what the heckler wanted. They wanted attention and they wanted to feel great and powerful – and so they believed that the best way to achieve this was to steal the attention and make me feel small and insecure… I’m sure that mostly they were not aware of this - but that didn’t make it any less tedious.

I’m sure you recognize this scenario?

Never allow “psychic vampires” to drain your precious energy. Save your energy for the people who want and appreciate what you’re offering and who will put it to good use.

Did I feel “small” for buttering up to the Facebook Police? Not at all. I was focused on my objective:
To deliver a message in a language that I knew they would respond to and get my desired result – and I did.

So actually I felt pretty darn good about myself on Thursday morning when I found myself BACK on the Book baby yeah!!

Hey Facebook Police, who’s your momma now?!

You all have a GREAT weekend – I know I will!

To your speaking Joy and Success!

PS Fore more on this topic (hecklers): Your Voice Is Your Calling Card, Chapter 13, Who’s Afraid of The Big Bad Wolf.
If you’re interested, I have set up a Page on Pagebook for the book where you can track it’s progress. There’s also an event set up for the launch on June 9. Page on Facebook is: