Industry: Contract Food and Support Services
Name of contact: Leslie Wilson, VP Media Marketing
It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. Warren Buffett
Never has this famous quote been more relevant than today when social media can have a huge impact on an employer’s reputation.
Because employee engagement depends on strong, effective communications, no longer can an organization publish a newsletter or make updates to an intranet and assume that it has successfully communicated with it’s associates.
My company is a contract services provider with thousands of clients from St. John’s to Victoria. We are 27,000 Canadian employees strong; we already need to speak in many languages and many ways. The language of social media is one of those languages that we embrace and practice.
A recent study of 2,300 employees titles “Employees Rising: Seizing the Opportunity in Employee Activism” conducted by Weber Shandwick revealed a rising social movement spurred on by the digital and social media era, which they have named “employee activism.”
The report says Employees are on the defense. Employers probably don’t know it, but many employees are out there now defending the reputations of their organizations. Nearly six in 10 (56%) respondents surveyed have either defended their employer to family and friends or in a more public venue — such as on a website, blog, or in a newspaper.
Business 2 Community, current business trends bloggers, says “The challenge with big company social media is that the marketing and communications process have been refined over the years. Often the practice of safety overshadows the approval of creative free-will. The difficulty is that while this process works well in an environment of multiple layers of sign-off, redrafting, and static communications, it is a big barrier to the effective use of social media.”
By engaging employees through blogging, we as senior leaders can reach employees and promote two-way conversations that allow the opportunity to learn first hand what issues are most important to our front line teams.
“Companies that are the focus of disgruntled employees venting on social networks (such as Twitter of Facebook) can also find that just as many employee activists can step in to defend them.” Quentin Fottrell reports on Digits by WSJ Live.
Here he speaks about whether or not you Can Tweet About Your Job Without Getting Fired.
They are doing it anyway. Business can’t be absent. Our employee activists can become the most credible advocates for our brands, equal to or at par with our customers. The benefits of empowering our workforce are cost effective and motivational.
Submitted By: Leslie Wilson, Compass Group Canada
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