by Kimberly Deas
Social media can be a double-edged sword for many companies. Without proper training, social media can leak inside information, reveal trade secrets or simply provide misinformation. Example: Microsoft recently terminated an employee who tweeted about a new Nokia phone in development.
With Facebook’s 800 million users and counting, it seems like almost everyone is on Facebook today, from the old and young to clients and staff. It used to be that only the marketing department needed to understand communicating with the public, but today anyone who uses social media needs to be educated on the finer points of communication.
Use these three tips to leverage the benefits and minimize the risk of social media:
1. Set boundaries. Clearly outline expectations for social media communication. Provide specific examples of what is acceptable and what is not. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) protects “concerted activities,” so you need to clearly establish boundaries for communication and include them in your policies and procedures.
2. Include training. There are many ways to provide training: monthly training sessions, attending conferences, lunch ’n learn sessions or webinars on focused topics. It is a great way to share information and enroll everyone in the best practices of using social media.
3. Experiment with content. Social media is about sharing information. Encourage employees to experiment with different types of content. Some might do a video, others an ebook, or maybe a blog.
Kimberly Deas combines her 10+ years’ experience in telecommunications with a background in personal coaching and results-oriented training.