When Rubber Hits The Road

by Jay Deragon on 07/30/2009

My Father was a man of few words but when he spoke we knew to listen.

One of his favorite expressions was  “You’ll know when the rubber hits the road“. As a kid I used to think, what the heck is he talking about.

As I got older I discovered that certain responses to my actions created “traction“, both good and bad.  While always aiming for things I desired some of my actions created traction in the wrong direction. The wrong direction usually sets you back and creates consequences you never expected nor wanted.

The “rubber” my father used to refer to was the “traction” a decision creates. Good decision create good traction. Bad decision create negative traction. Some decision simply create no traction rather you end up “spinning your wheels” burning up rubber.

Rubber on tires represent the depth of “traction” you get in order to move forward or backward towards a destination. When the rubber wears down your traction becomes slippery and you end up losing control over the direction the faster you go.

Is Social Media Rubber?

In business and life in general our “rubber” represents effort, energy and our ability to stay in control of our direction with traction.  In a conversation “rubber” could mean the progressive or digressive nature of the conversation. Ever had a conversation that goes from bad to worse? That is digression.

Certain conversation throughout the social web enable individuals and businesses to progress without reducing traction.  Instead these conversations enable the parties to collaboratively progress towards a destination whose end nobody knows but the parties anticipate new gains created from the knowledge exchanged.  Other conversations do nothing put “spin wheels” going nowhere yet burning up “rubber”. Then there are those conversation which go backwards and create zero progressive traction towards an aim.

Social media is like rubber. It can take you to a destination but the destination you pursue is represented by your conversational currency.  You can make progress or digress. You can spin your “wheels” chasing people’s pocketbooks with ads that get no traction. You can discount social media and subsequently get no traction at all and spin your wheels denying its value.

The irony of all this is that “rubber” can leave tracks. The tracks left by your conversational currency (traffic and content) clearly indicates the direction your going or wish to go whether intentional or not.  Other drivers can see whether your headed in the same direction as they are or whether your in reverse or standing still burning rubber.  Regardless of your direction you’ll be in similar company.

One last thing my father used to say “If you burn rubber your journey will be not be long”. My father was a pretty wise man.

What say you?

{ 15 comments }

Brian Miller July 31, 2009 at 9:42 am

RT @JDeragon When Rubber Hits The Road | The Relationship Economy…… http://bit.ly/7DLoH

Mark Harai July 31, 2009 at 9:41 am

RT @JDeragon When Rubber Hits The Road | The Relationship Economy…… http://bit.ly/7DLoH

Phil Novara July 31, 2009 at 10:34 am

“The irony of all this is that “rubber” can leave tracks.”

Think about this EVERY TIME you comment/post/tweet etc etc…you are creating a brand, and that brand is yourself…

qualresearcher (Brian Miller) July 31, 2009 at 9:46 am

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RT @JDeragon When Rubber Hits The Road | The Relationship Economy…… [link to post]

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Brian C. Citizen July 30, 2009 at 11:04 pm

Daily Deragon Dose: When Rubber Hits The Road http://bit.ly/4l4K58

Business 3.0 Tech. July 30, 2009 at 11:59 am

When Rubber Hits The Road http://tinyurl.com/m9d67s – Is Social Media Rubber?

b3buy (Business 3.0 Corp.) July 30, 2009 at 12:07 pm

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When Rubber Hits The Road [link to post] – Is Social Media Rubber?

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Achievers Network July 30, 2009 at 5:40 am

When Rubber Hits The Road: The tracks left by your conversational currency (traffic and content) clearly indicat.. http://bit.ly/4l4K58

Alan See July 30, 2009 at 5:29 am

RT @JDeragon: New blog post: When Rubber Hits The Road http://bit.ly/2cDhID

stephenckincaid (Stephen Kincaid) July 30, 2009 at 6:18 am

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Reviewing: When Rubber Hits The Road: The tracks left by your conversational currency (traffic and con.. [link to post]

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JDeragon (JDeragon) July 30, 2009 at 5:55 am

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When Rubber Hits The Road [link to post]

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AchieversNet (Achievers Network) July 30, 2009 at 5:42 am

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When Rubber Hits The Road: The tracks left by your conversational currency (traffic and content) clearly indicat.. [link to post]

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prblogs (prblogs) July 30, 2009 at 5:39 am

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RelationshipEcon: When Rubber Hits The Road: The tracks left by your conversational currency (t.. [link to post]

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AlanSee (Alan See) July 30, 2009 at 5:31 am

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RT @JDeragon: New blog post: When Rubber Hits The Road [link to post]

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JDeragon (JDeragon) July 30, 2009 at 5:28 am

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