Are your employees active social media users? About 15 years ago, when computerization boomed its way into corporate houses in India, executives were put through training so that they could discover the life altering ways of Microsoft Office, Lotus and Google. I think it’s time to put employees through training programs to tap the business effective and ethical use of social media at the workplace.
How often have you come across angry rants by employees against their bosses, or casual sharing of classified information on networking sites? These are precisely the sort of things you need to caution your employees against rather than punishing them by swearing off social media completely. I find that a tad regressive in an age when social media features so prominently in our day-to-day affairs. Recent findings have shown that Microsoft and Google have some of the most social employees. Doesn't seem to have come in the way of them being corporate giants now, has it?
- Set up a company network to encourage knowledge sharing. Your workplace after all is a community too. And social media has more to it than sharing photos and ‘what-I-just-ate’ updates. Exchange of relevant information on networking sites helps make your office smarter, increases communication and cohesiveness and, creates a healthy work atmosphere. Workers may find it a better way to send memos and notices through Facebook or Twitter. And appreciating an employee on a social networking site can be a great way to boost morale too.
- It is innate human nature to socialize with colleagues and peers in an organization. Friending or following an employee online doesn't get in the way of productivity. Rather, studies have found that workers who take short breaks on the internet are more productive than those who don’t. Let your employees be your brand ambassadors by posting regular news and updates online. Market surveys too are quicker through online polls; and sharing comments helps to know what your consumers are really looking for.
Social media can positively impact your workplace, if you know how to work it to your advantage. Train your employees to use it better and your business is sure to benefit from it too.