Over the last year, social media in the workplace has become a hot button topic. A recent incident with a St. Louis Applebee’s has shown many companies where and how their social media policies are lacking.
What happened at Applebee’s:
In January, an Applebee’s patron left a note on her credit card receipt, criticizing the restaurant’s policy on tips. A server posted a portion of the receipt on Reddit.com, and was then fired for violating company policy on publicizing company data.
How to make sure it doesn’t happen to you:
An across-the-board social media program should be part of employee training. Be certain that your social media policies aren’t too broad – you should be specific about what they should and shouldn’t post online. You need to teach your employees how to be respectful of social media, as it can be a prized business tool.
According to Jeanne Meister, an expert on the future workplace and a contributor to Forbes, “It is much more effective to offer social media training programs that encourage employers to use new technology for team-building and for collaborating across geographies, while making clear what the appropriate limits are to that use.”
She also recommends the “5 Rs of social media” for both employees and companies:
- Reason: Be reasonable – use the same politeness online as offline.
- Represent yourself: Always try to identify yourself on your social networking profiles. Anonymous profiles can garner negative attention.
- Responsibility: Don’t share inaccurate or untrue statements about your company, so as not to get in trouble by infringing upon company policies or guidelines.
- Respect: Only post things online that you wouldn’t mind saying in person or at the office.
- Restraint: Everything you share online is part of your personal online branding, so take a moment to reread what you write before you press send. Do you want that thought forever linked to your name?
As the role of social media morphs into something that is a larger part of the everyday business model, new company rules must also morph to the new technology. Follow the above strategies if you are looking to create a social media policy for your company.
Developing your mobile business is a must have these days! For a Free Social Media Assessment contact Dave Dronkers at [email protected] or call (949) 254-5084.