To engage your employees, lift the social media gag order

It’s time to stop policing and start empowering your team to be your organization’s best brand ambassadors.

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We all see the news stories.

Yet another goofball employee tweets proprietary information or hate-speech rants on his Facebook page, and legal action ensues.

Often, the employee gets in trouble, the organization suffers bad PR, and perhaps, pays a fine. We share the article’s URL with our internal teams, like well-intentioned fear-mongers.

“See?” we say. “This is what happens when you don’t have a social media policy in place. This is what happens when you don’t restrict staff access to social media and let them express themselves online.”

And yet, here are things we know about social media sharing and brand advocacy:

I frequently work with teams struggling through one of two internal phases:

1. Crafting policy. When you can get a free minute, you’re painstakingly drafting or revising corporate social media policy to include guidelines for internal/employee use. It often feels like you’re just one “bad employee tweet” away from a lawsuit, so you’re hustling and worried. You’re not sure the guidelines you’ve drafted are comprehensive, and stakeholder buy-in and legal review are making this a long and painful process.

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