The Influence Of Social Media On Strategic Thinking And Decision-making Processes

Social media is a relatively new media type involving interactive public engagement. Thus, it is different from traditional broadcast media, as its feedback is often indirect, late, and impersonal. And long-distance communication between individuals took place on a smaller level, usually via personal letters or telephone calls. With the preeminence of digital and flexible technologies, interaction happens on a whole new level, as now citizens and consumers pay the lowest cost possible while granting themselves access to new technologies.

social media

One of the biggest reasons for social media’s popularity is that access to information has never been so easy; moreover, due to the communication methods that media grants, individuals can deliver any information to the masses. However, it has its cons because people tend to ignore information due to its overload. So, if you wish to increase your or your company’s internet popularity and reach more significant audiences, you can use promotional companies’ help. For example, SocialWick offers services for almost every important social media site and application, including streaming, video, and music-sharing platforms.  

The Theories That Try to Explain the Correlation Between Social Media and Decision-Making Processes

As a communication tool, the Internet creates dramatic changes in the world. However, these changes, spurred by innovations, have both positive sides and drawbacks as they transform the social environment and communication laws. The internet is now considered one of the superior marketing strategies, which is why social media is packed to the brim with marketing content.

Some theories claim to explain the effect of the Internet and social media technologies on the decision-making process. Information society theories mainly focus on the positive side and promote the notion that modern society experiences significant growth in production, exchange, and consumption of information. Structural-functionalism considers innovative products as the new parts of the already structured social system. The function of any social tool has its role and aim in the sustainability of the larger structural entity. So, this approach sees society as a whole organism.

Social media and its participants are considered their flexible motive powers, develop over time and become more specialized at their “jobs.” Public sphere theory – as the name suggests, the approach to the public sphere is idealistic and normative. It implies unrealistically broad and widespread participation. In short, it is an exaggerated version of democracy as the approach predicates that the government’s laws and policies should be by the public. With the emergence of social media, it is possible to go back to direct democracy now. 

The Defects of These One-Sided Theories

On the contrary, to the traditional theories that ignore some details and characteristics of governments, industries, and the public itself, the practical implementation of social media brings in certain drawbacks and debates that are not easily agreeable. So, some reverse processes might happen with the development of new technologies. It becomes apparent that it is not enough for industries and official agencies to use just customized advertising. They wish to receive any kind of information about users: travel directions, internet search history, and political preferences. Most influential actors try to gain more influence on audiences and sometimes ignore ethics and even legal regulations and laws connected to privacy.

Leaders and Decision-Making Process

Modern technologies are created and produced by the world’s biggest industries, and local governments regulate their exploitation. Thus, societies would not be able to access digital platforms without their work decisions. Therefore, these actors partly become modern society’s leaders or at least influences. The theory of strategic leadership defines the direction of a leader’s vision and future orientation concerning the decision-making process, crisis management, ideology, and policy. Therefore, “vision” is an external element that focuses on environmental factors and facts, such as the leader’s efforts to achieve goals. The second element – the “Decision-making style,” focuses on the internal aspects of leadership that sometimes depend on personal beliefs and intelligence, as judgment can be either thinking or feeling; thinking means the use of logical and rational processes to reach a conclusion and decide further action.

On the other hand, the handling process refers to emotion-based decision-making processes that result in findings and actions influenced by affection. Therefore, tension can occur within strategic leadership between the elements of strategic planning and leadership vision. This tension can destroy credibility unless strategic leadership is managed effectively. One of the primary responsibilities of a leader is to define reality. By interpreting experience, a leader encourages followers to better understand social reality. In the economic aspect, strategic leadership involves the organization as a whole and its relationship with the external environment. It relates to the macro system’s wholesome ideologies, identity, mission, and holistic exterior view. All of these factors imply strategic elements. The disruption in strategic planning may occur when the organization’s interests differ from the demands of society. 

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