5 Ways Leaders Can Navigate Social Media in an Election Year

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Do politics belong in the boardroom? The watercooler? The CEO’s social media? In an election year like 2024, there is a divide and it isn’t just between Republicans and Democrats. The dividing line is also generational. Older workers were taught that politics have no place at work. Studies show younger workers are open about politics and have expectations for the people they work with and for. 

Business leaders and those in the C-suite don’t need to stay silent about politics. However, they should have a plan for when and how to communicate with stakeholders online. Learn more about my top five ways leaders can navigate social media during an election year in my Inc. article.

1. Understand your audience

Who are you speaking to when you post on social media? From investors to customers and potential employees, you likely have a vast and diverse online audience. If you lead a regional, national, or global team, it’s critical to remember the diverse perspectives in your organization. 

2. Control the message

Collectively, we know the newest generation of voters is more open and passionate about social causes than previous generations. However, just because people you lead may want to know who you are voting for or where you stand on social issues, it doesn’t mean you have to tell them.

3. Shield your support

Even if you aren’t sharing overtly political messaging, something as simple as following candidates or political parties on each platform can have implications for you and your brand.

4. Check your facts

If you choose to share articles or information about specific causes, controversial topics, or candidates, check your sources. It’s important to understand the bias you are consuming. There is an industry standard in ranking the amount of bias various news outlets bring into their information.

5. Align with company values

Whether you want to go as far as sharing your political views or want to encourage your employees to vote, you must understand that navigating politics on social media is complex. Any statements you make as the leader of a company have significant implications for your business and its stakeholders. 

If you do wade into political waters, ensure your perspective aligns with company values and company policies. When in doubt, talk with a friend or family member with a different viewpoint or consult with a PR pro to make sure your political perspective doesn’t send the wrong message, or worse, start a crisis.