THE INC. LIFE

Facebook’s Latest Move Is a Powerful Lesson In Emotional Intelligence. Here’s Why In 1 Sentence.

Facebook’s hiring of New York Times public editor Liz Spayd could speak volumes to its audience–in a very good way.

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BY Peter Economy - 12 Sep 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

In today's world of online publication and constant information proliferation, every single company is realizing the importance of incorporating original content in their platforms. And, despite what we may think, massive tech corporations like Facebook and Google aren't exempt from this new wave--especially when it comes to creating content that speaks to its users on an everyday basis.

In a recent announcement covered by Recode just last week, it looks like Facebook has hired previous New York Times public editor Liz Spayd to consult and publish for the social media giant. Going forward, she will divulge to the public certain details about how the company operates internally--creating in-house content to address user concerns and feedback. And, she will play a major role in expanding Facebook's existing Hard Questions blog, which provides on-site content addressing how the company makes important decisions.

In short, Spayd will essentially provide users more transparency about the company as a whole--imparting insight never before available to the general public.

Why, then, does Spayd's addition to Facebook teach us about emotional intelligence? Here it is in one sentence:

Expanding Facebook's in-house content with publication that aims to outreach and educate ultimately addresses user concerns around Facebook's obscurity in operations--this demonstrates to users that the company cares about its audience's criticism and negative opinions.

Perhaps taken on as a direct response to the backlash Facebook received in terms of propagating fake news during last year's heated election season, Spayd's role should theoretically attend to user's various concerns around privacy and enabling of terrorist groups online. Although the company's decision has seen a great deal of criticism as well, it's clear that the act of hiring Spayd speaks volumes about Facebook's willingness to take action in the face of adversity.

Reacting in a rapid and direct manner to problems your audience have voiced shows to those who use your product how much you care about their thoughts. It makes them feel valued, understood, and heard--something we can all take a lesson from, no matter what field we work in.