Is social media “stupid and vainglorious?”

In response to the last post, challenging Barclay Communications’ rationale for blocking employee access to social media, a blogger named Jeremy Probert, on the wordmonger’s blog (lower case is his, not mine), declared social media to be “stupid and vainglorious.” He wrote:

It’s been a long time, gentle readers, since I came across something that deserves an award for its icky, sticky, company hippy nature, its inherent stupidity and intellectual laziness and its truly horrible smug and self-satisfied tone. But today is the day – it chills my very soul to introduce this, the Stop Blocking website and it disheartens me even further to link to this, a piece entitled ‘Demolishing Barclays Communications’ Blocking Argument Point-by-Point’.

At first, I dismissed this as just another business pundit whose worldview hasn’t shifted since “The Organization Man.” But Jeremy does make points that are worth addressing debunking.

Most of Jeremy’s challenges are based on the fact that he read just this post, and didn’t bother with the rest of this blog where his arguments have been addressed repeatedly. Still, there’s nothing wrong with reiterating and reinforcing these points (which Jeremy generously calls “idiocies”):

Apparently, all workers, regardless of status or paygrade, put in extra hours and therefore compensate for any time that they may waste using social networks. Of course they do. In the same way that they all love the company that they work for, its senior management and its brands

We’re mostly talking about information and knowledge workers. And no, not every one of them put in extra hours. However, there is clear evidence from substantial, empirical, comprhensive research that Millennials do. As for those who don’t (and this point will re-emerge repeatedly), clearly communicated and enforced policies will deal with abuse.

Monitoring and addressing productivity is a supervisor’s job, not a IT’s. The consequences of blocking everybody as a means of addressing problem workers is a great way to kill engagement and drop employee trust to zero. As American Express’s vice president of communications James Lynch said yesterday at the Ragan Social Media Summit here at SWIFT headquarters in Belgium, blocking access is not a smart risk-mitigation strategy.

By the way, I’m a believer in public execution. Reward and recognition are the only way to drive culture and behavior change in organization. Announcing to the entire organization that an employee was terminated for violating the company’s policy can do more to keep employees on the straight and narrow than blocking policies that employees can override as easily as pulling out their smart phones.

Productivity suffers if employees can’t connect to social networks at work (thanks, University of Melbourne!). Apparently use of social media ‘resets an employee’s concentration’. How DID we manage to concentrate before?

First, the University of Melbourne didn’t produce the only study to reach this conclusion. Independently, for example, MindLab International conducted research that arrived at the same results. Jeremy can sniff at these results all he likes, but until he can produce research results to the contrary, I’ll continue to point to these studies.

As for how we managed to concentrate before — we didn’t. A colleague of mine — who manages a team at a global consulting firm that produces technology solutions — told me he and his team are under intense pressure to produce a high number of billable hours. Yet after five or six hours of continuous work, concentration slides so badly that work produced after that needs to be redone, so the pressure to put in the hours becomes counterproductive. And he lauds his team as the cream of the coding crop. It’s just, he says, that at a certain point without breaks, concentration declines.

If anyone believes that the workers sitting in rows of desks begins supervised by stern overseers to make sure they didn’t waste time were more productive than today’s workers who do take breaks and visit their online communities is simply deluded.

Because the US Department of Defense has opened its networks to social media, does not mean that LargeCorp Industries LLC (in the business of profit, not homeland security) should – it’s not a question of risk from cyber-attack, it’s a question of perceived need and value. (In any case, I would ask whether the ‘private in the field in Afghanistan’ is free to change his status willy-nilly (‘Safe behind a wall’ to ‘In a ditch with blast concussion’) or to share any sort of geographic or temporal information)

Jeremy, I have to ask if you read Barclay Communications’ argument at all. The very point they made is that opening networks to social media puts networks at risk to cyber-attack. That was their entire point. That’s what I was responding to.

And no, Jeremy, of course not: The Department of Defense, once it decided that social media was a “field of maneuver” rather than a “fortress to be defended” implemented training to ensure soldiers kept both themselves and the unit safe. As DoD senior strategist Jack Holt put it, the military teaches soldiers to be safe in the desert, on the seas, in the skies; they can train them to be safe online. Should you be interested, Jeremy, you can listen to my interview with Jack here or his interview with Eric Schartzman here.

Clearly, I never suggested that companies should simply open their networks. They need to implement policies and guardrails so employees can protect both themselves and the company, and the organization can ensure that they reap the benefits of employees’ online activities while mitigating the risks.

(Doesn’t all of this just sound like common sense? Somehow this escaped Jeremy. Sadly, he’s not alone.)

Company ‘confidentiality can be violated anywhere, even an elevator’. True – but your average elevator holds 12 people and Facebook holds a potentially eavesdropping audience of 450 million. Go figure

I’m not aware of any Facebook account with 450 million friends. Are you? And a privacy violation is a privacy violation. The HIPAA fine won’t be any larger for violation on Facebook than it would be for a violation in an elevator.

The point is that closing off access to Facebook doesn’t solve the problem; educating staff about privacy does.

Of course, Jeremy ignores the rest of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center President and CEO’s larger point: blocking Facebook shuts down the ability for employees to build community, and it closes off the communication channel of preference among younger employees. Paul notes that he often gets useful suggestions and ideas from employees who don’t use email. (If you have children who are teens or in their twenties, you know this.)

‘Many employees carry smartphones – or they can (access social media) from home after work’ – again, true. But what they do on their own time is their own business – unless it contravenes company policy on how they may represent themselves as employees, or the laws of the land – in which case they get fired. In the workplace – well, the clue is in the name – ‘work’place. Not ‘fun’place or ‘do-your-own-thing’place

I am frequently accused (as Jeremy does) of being some kind of employee rights advocate. I’m not. I’m a business advocate. Understanding that Millenials (and, to a great degree, GenX) operate in what they call the “weisure” world — the cross-over of work and leisure — is vital. Work happens where it makes sense, whether it’s in an office or at the beach. Why? Because they have grown up as hyperconnected individuals where proximity is not required for work to be done. The idea that proximity is a requirement for knowledge/information workers is a relic of the era from which Jeremy has failed to move.

A study noted by American Express’s Lynch noted than39% of Millennial employees won’t work at companies that block Facebook — or will leave if a new block is implemented. That’s not because they want to have fun, but because Facebook is how they communicate and collaborate. Consider, for example, the results of the study, “The New Symbiosis of Professional Networks,” conducted by SAP in conjunction with the Society for New Communciation Research (SNCR). The study found that organizational decision-makers who have access to their social media peer groups make better and faster decisions. Where, primarily, do those professional peers reside, according to the study? Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Seventy-six percent of those professionals visit these networks once or more per day, where they…

  • Access thought leadership and information unavailable inside the walls of the company
  • Showcase the company (building brand recognition and supporting organizational goals from recruiting to sales)
  • Increase the speed of collaboration
  • Research business decisions

Another study showed that 40% of IT professionals use social networks to seek advice from peers on technology purchases. Clearly a stupid and vainglorious activity.

As for the whole “fun” thing, no, the workplace doesn’t need to be fun. But employees do need to be engaged (which means they make discretionary effort on the company’s behalf). Companies with large populations of highly engaged employees produce greater growth by far than others. It’s hard to imagine engaged employees in organizations where the first message they hear is, “We don’t trust any of you as far as we can throw you.” It’s also hard to imagine companies blocking access showing high levels of job satisfaction.

As for “do your own thing,” perhaps you’ve heard of a concept called “innovation.” Google practices it, with employees required to spend a certain amount of time innovating based on their own ideas. Have you checked Google’s valuation lately? I’d also point you to the book “Empowered,” by Forrester analysts Josh Bernoff and Ted Schadler, which promotes the idea that employees “own thing” ideas of how to use social media to better serve customers can produce a significant marketplace differentiation.

‘If normal use of bandwidth (this refers to employee use of social media) is slowing (your) network to a crawl, get more bandwidth.’ Just go to your finance guys and ask them to approve an increase in your budget, to purchase bandwidth to allow your employees to update their Facebook statii. That’s bound to work. Job done

Jeremy, please allow me to introduce you to the notion of “making a business case.” This concept involves demonstrating that the investment will produce results that exceed the cost.

All of this is hopelessly Utopian – the ideals of an imaginary world where everyone is nice, contented, loyal and trustworthy. Well, here’s the wake-up call. They’re not, and you need to bear that in mind when thinking about social media use in the workplace.

If your hiring practices result in bringing in employees who don’t embrace the preferred culture of the organization, that’s your fault. You can dismiss all this as “utopian” all you like, but companies like Cisco Systems and zappos.com seek culture fits above all else in their recruiting, and they reap the benefits. Hiring people you don’t trust is an archaic practice. If you engage in it, you have nobody but yourself to blame. To suggest that it’s simply not possible is nothing more than lazy.

Social media is wasteful and vainglorious.

First, this seems odd coming from somebody writing on his blog. But still…

This is the lynchpin statement that showcases the author’s stupendous ignorance. I hear it repeatedly from people who have not made the slightest effort to explore the research that proves precisely the opposite. General Motors is selling cars by allowing employees to talk about their driving experiences on Facebook from work. Sprint is solving customer problems it identifies through employee volunteers on Twitter. Best Buy is driving customers to its stores via 2,500 employees who answer consumer product questions posed on Twitter — from the floor store. Home Depot’s staff can produce videos or test results to respond to home improvement questions posed through social media channels. Through the employees’ social networks, companies are improving recruiting, identifying competitive intelligence, sourcing subject matter expertise, obtaining training…the list goes on.

There are thousands upon thousands of case studies, and hundreds of research studies, that prove the stupidity of such throwaway statements as “social media is wasteful and vainglorious.” The simple fact is, supported by policies and processes, employee engagement in social media can drive growth and profitability.

What is stupid and vainglorious is leaders who dismiss social media despite the avalanche of quantifiable evidence to the contrary.

15 comments ↓

#1 Tweets that mention Is social media “stupid and vainglorious?” — Stop Blocking! -- Topsy.com on 12.16.10 at 3:59 am

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Marvin K. Tumbo, Haroon Bijli and Shel Holtz, Shel Holtz. Shel Holtz said: Responding to the notion that social media is "stupid and vainglorious." Comments appreciated. http://bit.ly/ibj67N [...]

#2 Jeremy Probert on 12.16.10 at 4:50 am

Thanks, Shel – this does make interesting reading. As I’m sure you’d expect, I don’t agree with quite a few of the points you make. However, that being said, I recognise that there are arguments on both sides – compelling ones – and it’s unlikely the sides will reach agreement anytime soon.

For clarity, however – I draw a distinction between social media and blogging – social media is (for me) Facebook, Twitter et al, whereas blogging, for many, is a way of disseminating useful information and opinion. You can deride one, while participating in the other.

I also draw a distinction between digital marketing, and attempting to leverage social for business purposes. Digital marketing – by which I mean communicating sales messages to a defined audience, through the medium of the internet, in such a way as to be able to quantify results in business terms (profit) – is a good thing.

Social media marketing – despite all the fantastic claims about selling cars, or electrical goods, or pizza – is not quantifiable and (whisper it) the results (if there are any) cannot be directly attributed to the social media effort.

The amount of times I have asked marketers how they measure their social media efforts and have received the same answers – number of fans, number of friends, number of followers, number of page impressions, number of click-throughs – well, OK, but can you show me that all this activity translates into sales and revenues? Erm – no.

And, Shel, you know as well as I do that for every piece of research supporting an argument (let’s take climate change as an example) there’s an equal and opposite piece of research debunking it. I don’t have to find the one that says that social media lowers productivity in the workplace – simply because, under Newton’s Third Law, I know it exists.

And thanks for the comment about Medieval thinking – I shall have fun with that.

All the best

#3 admin on 12.16.10 at 6:01 am

Thank you for the measured response, Jeremy, and I look forward to a continued friendly conversation.

For what it’s worth, Facebook and the like are generally considered social networking, a subset of social media. Blogs are considered the first tool of social media, which now includes Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Second Life, Digg, Yelp, and so on.

Take a look at Facebook’s messaging initiative. As Facebook becomes the defacto home for many people on the web, it could replace email (a 40-year-old technology with a host of drawbacks). I work with hospitals, among other clients; emergency room staffs set up their own Facebook groups to communicate with one another between shifts, mainly for work-related purposes, because there are no internal mechanisms as efficient or easy-to-use as Facebook. You should look at the dimensions of social networks that drive productivity and improve communication; there are many.

I would also point out that, for example, General Motors is QUANTIFYING how many cars are being sold based on employees evangelizing the product in their social communities (primarily Facebook). Other organizations are training their employees to be authentic and safe while answering questions and raising points about the organization’s corporate social responsibility efforts.

According to research (which you may or may not choose to believe) only 14% of people believe advertising, but 84% believe their peers (or “similar others”). The Edelman Trust Barometer, a global survey, found that people trust front-line employees (people like themselves) far more than they trust company leaders or official company spokespersons. Hence, it makes sense for companies to encourage their employees to engage on the company’s behalf.

I hope you have as much fun with “medieval” as I did with “icky, sticky, company hippy.”

Again, looking forward to further conversation.

/shel

#4 admin on 12.16.10 at 6:04 am

Oh, one more thing, Jeremy. There are evolving social media measurement efforts that DO quantify effectiveness based on outcomes. Read Katie Paine’s “The Measurement Standard” blog and look at measurement messages from Forrester Research and The Altimeter Group. Social media can also quantifiably affect a company’s Net Promoter Score, an age-old metric. The science of measuring the effectiveness of social media is improving and evolving every day.

Here’s just one good post on social media measurement:
http://www.briansolis.com/2010/02/roi-how-to-measure-return-on-investment-in-social-media/

/shel

#5 Davien on 12.16.10 at 6:40 am

I find your tactical approach interesting if somewhat misguided.

First, blaming the need for uninhibited work asset access on “Millennials” is charming, but it doesn’t mesh with my experience with 18-35 year olds. Perhaps focusing on what is best for workers should focus on adults, as children change. Those in this age range I know who will work will happily do so without facebook or smartphones, those who would rather screw around will screw around. I don’t consider it fair to extend a generalization about part of a generation to all of a generation as fair.

Secondly, you are absolutely correct that those who are joining the workforce now and in the future will be more technologically savvy and less prone to unintentionally causing security issues. Furthermore, you are absolutely correct in saying that user awareness is the key. You are even correct in your assessment of the impact of security savvy and how it should be considered in the hiring process. However, your view that these things are simple to achieve in a mid sized to large company is naïve at best.

Rather, I pose to you that convincing your C-class to spend as much on effective training for all employees as they spend on vendor reccommended industry best practice security solutions (regardless their efficacy) is not so simple. Further, those who are already entrenched in their practices and have otherwise specific job skills are not so trainable or replaceable as you seem to suggest. Find me a Millennial with 5 or more years of experience administrating mainframe-based technology. Better still, find me anyone with enough experience to keep me going who is going to embrace a paradigm challenging security awareness program with arms as open as yours…

Lastly, monitoring these systems costs money. Most organizations pursue a security policy of blocking everything you can without stopping business so that you have enough resources to monitor the rest. Unless you have a clever way to cloudsource your DLP and reputation management without costing your existing workforce more time, most SMBs don’t have the freestanding cash to pay for three more people to read every blog post, status update, or tweet in order to provide “management” with enough information to do the self policing you prescribe.

Because, you’re right: it isn’t IT’s job to control user productivity. It’s Management who tells them to. I can guarantee you that Security pros and sysadmins have hundreds of better things to do than play net nanny by generating reports about excessive e-mail or web usage. But they still end up doing it, not because of some perverse desire to rob you of your much needed thinking break, but because Management has delegated it to and demanded it of them.

So, until the workforce ages out and tech savvy people are able to take over key legislative and managerial roles, your world will continue to be seen as bizarrely Utopian in any place with more than about 3,000 employees, I’d wager.

#6 admin on 12.16.10 at 9:17 am

Davien, here’s what’s misguided:

The oldest Millenials were born in 1977. That puts them not only in the workforce but entering management and executive ranks. Further, half of the world’s population is under 30. I suggest you read the book, “The 2020 Workplace” to learn the incredibly significant impact of the Millennials on the workforce. It’s a typical but serious mistake to think of them as “children.”

Second, I reject the idea of “screwing around.” The measure of productivity is whether work is getting done, on time, that measures up to or exceeds the organization’s quality standards. It doesn’t matter to Millenials where the work gets done; just that it does. It also doesn’t matter where leisure occurs. Further, engaged employees are, by definition, those that want to give discretionary effort to the organization. Engaged Millennials make a company’s workforce one to be reckoned with. Or, you can have the best, most talented and skilled of them go to your competitors and leave you with mediocrity.

I may be naive in my belief that accommodating worker preferences is something organizations can accomplish. I must be hallucinating when I visit such companies (small, mid-sized, and large) and read hundreds of case studies about them. Here’s what I think: Making that case is an excuse for not doing it.

I agree 100% about training. However, classroom training — where companies spend most of their money — won’t cut it. 70% of what employees learn is on-the-job, experiential, and 20% is (ready?) networking with peers and mentors, much of which happens (ready?) on social networks. Only 10% occurs in classrooms, where 95% of most companies invest their training resources. New models propose shifting those allocations to support networked training.

Again, with Millennials who are 33 years old, I can find plenty with the skills and experience you assert is hard to find. I know some. Mark Zuckerberg is one.

Monitoring is not an issue. Supervisors need to be trained to identify abuse. Other employees will call out their peers who cause offense or problems. (It happens all the time.) And the CEOs with whom I speak (I interviewed several for my last book) insist that they have been warned about these problems, but after years of open access, have not experienced them. Why? Policies, training, communication, and a culture of trust and engagement.

I suggest you look at Thomas Nelson Publishers as just one example of a company with under 3,000 employees where all of this is evident. Sorry, I understand your points, but the evidence doesn’t support them.

Unless, of course, your company has a culture of paranoia and mistrust, and employees are actively disengaged. In that case, I’d start looking for an exit strategy. Competitors who understand all of this will kick your ass.

#7 Jeremy Probert on 12.16.10 at 12:57 pm

Thanks for the considered feedback Shel. In terms of social media versus social networking – it’s (by your definition) social networking that everyone is having a right royal hoo-ha about, but they call it ‘social media’. From a corporate point of view, I personally support
focused blogs with a commercial purpose and the strategic use of a corporate web presence – what I’m agin is the evangelistas that try to tell me that social media (by your definition, social networking) is the new holy grail of communication and marketing. It is not. It exists, it’s full of people, and good luck to each and every single one of them, but from a corporate point of view, they are useless to you. You cannot tell them what to do, think or buy. If you’re lucky, they’ll be polite. Offend them in some indefinable way and you’ll be carrying your fundament home in a sling. The bottom line is they do what they do – why should we waste valuable corporate resource trying to herd cats? Monitor the cats by all means – make sure they’re not herding your way – but why invest in the delusion that their behaviour is anything more than random?

Back to employees. There was a hospital in the UK, which obviously allowed access to social media. Next thing a number of medical staff were fired for playing the ‘lying-down game’ (yep – it was new on me too) and posting the pictures on Facebook. There was the electrical retailer whose staff started a group entitled (something like) ‘Our Customers Are Morons’. And there was the infamous Dominos Pizza affair. Not saying that this wouldn’t have happened without access to social media – but, hey. I know there are corporations/organisations where it all works – Newton’s Third Law again. For me, if there’s a risk of it going pear-shaped and damaging corporate reputation, then nip it in the bud.

Finally, you talked earlier about privacy violations. Didn’t you hear? Mark Zuckerberg has decreed that ‘privacy is no longer the norm’. (OK, I’m paraphrasing.) But it’s true – social networking individuals (clearly) value privacy less and less. If they don’t care about their own, what hope for yours or your company’s?

#8 Gerry Corbett on 12.16.10 at 5:05 pm

The year was 1995. I just joined Hitachi in the Americas as head of corporate communications. Right off the bat I realized that Hitachi needed a web site. We needed to get ahead of the curve for a variety of reasons. So in the process of embarking on this construction project, I discovered a strong reluctance to make the internet available to my team for the purpose of building and testing.

I encountered an even stronger reticence to make the internet available to employees. There were the same arguments time after time. “If you give employees this new tool there will be a decline in productivity and employees will just waste time surfing.” It proved to be a long and winding road and a bit of a battle. The web was initially opened up only to senior management, then middle management and finally rank and file. With fresh scars from the war, the good guys finally won and the internet was opened to all.

The chief lesson learned was if you make it open and transparent, for the most part, most of the employees will do the right thing. If you restrict something, it makes it more attractive. So just be open. It works most if not every time.

Just saying!

#9 Tweets that mention Is social media “stupid and vainglorious?” — Stop Blocking! -- Topsy.com on 12.16.10 at 6:28 pm

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by IABC and Sarah Davy, Shel Holtz. Shel Holtz said: PLEASE weigh in with your $.02 on debate over employee access to social channels: http://bit.ly/hhS29f [...]

#10 Davien on 12.16.10 at 7:39 pm

Shel, I should tell you I AM a Millenial. Very much so. And your model of engaged synergy is NOT the norm. It’ll be just great when we get there, but it’s still AT LEAST a decade away. Assuming that everyone between the ages of 18 and 33 (I’ll take your margin) is as tech savvy and open as they would need to be in order to assert harmony in your model is a dangerous thing to do. They’re not.

I agree that companies need to evolve past traditional internal modes of communication and that they need to embrace new media in customer interactions.

I do not agree that this must come at the cost of eliminating the barrier between work and personal online activity and interactions. This separation is becoming increasingly valuable to the upcoming workforce, I guarantee it.

I foresee wholly accepted work environments where you check your smartphone at the door. Not for all jobs, mind. But, some acceptance that personal devices and communications does detract from the quality of interactions is gaining ground in high schools now and many colleges where the truly successful technical students eschew these fancy devices as a distraction.

Further: most teens don’t tweet. Consider that while you are marking facebook and twitter as the future of corporate america…

#11 Suzanne Smith on 12.17.10 at 7:27 am

We live in the information age and the rapid interchange of information has revolutionized how we do things and ramped-up efficiency and effectiveness of the workforce to a new level. Social networking is an extension of the information revolution. Social networking is revolutionizing the way people interact and is ramping-up the efficiency and effectiveness of group activities both in the workplace and for recreation. It’s a brave new world.

#12 Shel Holtz on 12.17.10 at 12:27 pm

Davien, I don’t know where you’re getting your information about patterns and behaviors about your generation; I’m getting mine from research I keep on top of regularly (it’s part of my job). I suggest, again, that you read “The 2020 Workplace,” which was based on an exhaustive study, and Dan Tapscott’s “Grown Up Digital.”

I don’t hang my hat on any one tool. By the time the generation born after 1997 enters the workforce, who knows what may have replaced Facebook. As for Twitter, first, there is plenty of research validating its adoption in the business world. Second, while teens may not be using it, that doesn’t account for the oldest of the Millennials, now 33 years old. Third, the fact that teens aren’t using it doesn’t mean they won’t (or whatever comes next) as they enter the workforce. But again, it’s not about any particular tool or channel, just the ability to access the tools and channels they DO use.

You might be interested in this report, released by the Pew Internet and American Life Project just yesterday:

http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2010/Generations-2010.aspx

I do appreciate your comments!

#13 Why companies should stop blocking social media | Stone Meta Media on 09.14.11 at 3:15 pm

[...] According to a study by American Express, 39 percent of younger workers won’t even consider working for a company that blocks Facebook. It’s no wonder. In most cases, Facebook has become their communication tool of choice among colleagues and friends. Why would they work for a company that’s going to block the tool they want to use and are using on a daily basis to communicate, share, and learn? [...]

#14 Antisocial Millennial on 05.01.12 at 11:28 am

As a millennial myself (16, too young to be in the workforce as of yet), I would like to say that I proudly avoid all use of social media except for the occasional comments on various blogs (such as this one). If people of my generation won’t work for a company that blocks social media, then I say either grow up or stay unemployed. Most of them probably won’t work anywhere but McDonald’s anyway (which has free wi-fi, but good luck tweeting while you’re flipping burgers as a show of your “productivity” and “multitasking”).

Admittedly, I am probably in the tiniest fraction of a minority among my peers. Since when was it ever the company’s “job” to conform to employee whims? Or is this a new attitude of the spoiled-brat generation I’m ashamed to be in the chronological demographic of, the generation of quotas, political correctness, and “participation trophies” that arose from their Gen-X parents being raised by tambourine-playing hippies who wanted to buy the world a Coke?

There’s an old saying: Time is money, and if you got time to lean, you got time to clean. Those who don’t like it can see how lucky they get monetizing their idiotic social media pages or selling pay-per-click downloads on illegal file hosters. To paraphrase from another old saying, those who can, do — while those who can’t (or won’t), tweet.

#15 admin on 05.02.12 at 3:30 pm

You may only be 16, but you sound like you’re 60. I wonder if you’ve read any of the posts on this site, or if you’re just sticking with kneejerk reactions that have been completely debunked by research. My interest is not in employee rights to be online at work, but on the tangible benefits companies gain from employees engaged with each other and with customers. No less an authority than McKinsey & Company sees a direct correlation between companies that encourage employees to engage in social media with customers and growth in market share. Research from The Altimeter Group shows that companies that train their employees and let them loose on social media encounter fewer crises than those that don’t (and less impact from those crises that do happen). You can continue to spout the typical uninformed point of view or you can educate yourself about the realities of the hyper-connected world in which you live. This site offers plenty of resources. You might want to consider exploring some of them.

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