My Most Popular Tweet of the Year (And What It Says About Our Industry)

For those of you that aren’t on Twitter or don’t follow me there, I am pretty active on that platform as @avphenom.  Most of my tweets deal with AV in some capacity, whether I’m participating in an online chat session, playing an industry hashtag game, or sharing a blog, podcast, or perhaps general business intel that is highly applicable to our industry.

Some of my personal life does sneak into the feed here and there as well, especially if it has to do with one of my kids, which brings me to what had to be the most popular thing I posted on Twitter in 2018.

I wasn’t completely surprised that people liked the tweet, after all, I expected our AV Women and fellow AV moms dads to identify with a young girl who loves science and wants to work in technology someday.  However, given the other things I share week in and week out, I was surprised that this was the most popular tweet I had all year, at least from a “likes” perspective, and it really gave me a few insights into our industry.

First of all, with all the talk about girls in STEM and in making AV diverse, there is always the potential for people to give lip service and platitudes without really believing exactly what they say.  However, there is no pressure to participate in “liking” a tweet online.  It would be easy to ignore and pass over if, in fact, it didn’t strike some chord.  Organically clicking the heart button is a choice no one really feels compelled to make, especially if they are not mentioned specifically anywhere in the post.  For this reason, I was encouraged that the attention we are seeing around promoting women and diversity in our industry is not just something people are supporting to be seen as inclusive, but rather that the movement really represents an important desire for change in this respect.

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The second takeaway I had was that our industry truly appreciates passion and education. We enjoy seeing people reap the rewards of their hard work and celebrate the successes of others who work hard to achieve something. My daughter was one of only 26 kids from 4th, 5th and 6th grade chosen for the program. She stays after school an extra 90 minutes one day each week to do science experiments and learn new things instead of coming home to enjoy some other leisure activity. In the comments on the post, someone even mentioned the look in her eyes.  We appreciate passion and hard work, and that’s a great thing as an industry.

Finally, with so much focus on tech, best practices, new products and amazing installs and experiences, this tweet proved one other thing to me.

Our industry revolves around good people first and foremost. 

This was a personal post and it elicited a personal response.  Other people sharing in a father’s joy and seeing the happiness in a little girl’s eyes that she gets to learn something new and get one step closer to what she loves in life.  I knew from experience that this was true about our industry, but this really quantified that feeling.

As people and as an industry, we have an amazing capacity for empathy and inclusion as well as a deep-rooted appreciation for hard work and results. Perhaps if we made those the core value propositions of our businesses as opposed to the widgets and thingamabobs we sell, we may find a promising future in the ever-changing world of technology.

Happy Holidays and here’s to an awesome 2019!