Those who have heard me speak or read my columns about social media the last few years know that I rarely fail to mention words of wisdom from two people, Gerald Baron and Bill Boyd. It was Baron’s book Now Is Too Late2 that put everything I learned as a reporter about news coverage and the impact of the Internet and social media into perspective. The book also took me into the world of Bill Boyd, a fire chief in Washington State.
Since reading the book I’ve gotten to know both men and stay current on their thoughts of the evolution of social media in the public safety/ emergency management arena through emails, phone conversations, Tweets, Facebook posts and their blogs (Bill’s It’s Not My Emergency and Gerald’s Crisis Blogger).
Bill Boyd is one of a very small number of fire service leaders who “gets it” when it comes to the crucial role of social media in emergency management. More important, Chief Boyd is constantly looking at some of the every day practices of the fire service and public safety and how they must evolve to include social media, not only to get the job done, but to stay relevant to the people you serve.
If you are a leader who is still hesitant about making SM a part of your department, or one who is looking for guidance and trying to understand what you got yourself into with Facebook, Twitter and all of the other platforms, let Chief Bill Boyd be your guide. Chief Boyd, along with Gerald Baron and Agincourt Strategies, have produced this video training series to give you what you need to know to understand how social media is changing emergency management and how you can leverage its power to protect both the public and your agency’s reputation.
I am honored to team up with these two as part of STATter911 Communications continuing efforts to help fire service leaders and others communicate effectively, whether it is part of the daily routine of serving the public or during a critical incident. In addition to these videos, STATter911.com will be running guest columns on social media from both Chief Bill Boyd and Gerald Baron.