Study Shows Importance of Employees' Role in Social Media

Balancing ActsA recent study in the Journal of Marketing Management has an important message for companies: manage employees for them to represent you well on social media. Education News summarizes the study results:

"...companies need to focus more on managing employees as active reputation builders and brand ambassadors in social media instead of conceiving them only as possible reputation risks."

According to lead author Joonas Rokka, "employees have a crucial role as active meaning makers and reputation builders in various social-media networks that include customers, colleagues, and friends." Rokka also emphasized companies' role in employees' well-being:

"When companies trust and treat employees fairly, and employ good day-to-day management practices, employees will do good for the company in return. For instance, by sharing their experiences of the company and its products in social media." 

The article is titled "Balancing Acts: Managing Employees and Reputation in Social Media" in recognition of the paradoxes and contradictions in managing employees as well as a company's reputation. In other words, companies won't find easy approaches or perfect solutions.

Discussion Starters:

  • How, if at all, has your own experience working at companies affected your online posts about them?
  • What would inspire you to talk positively about your employer on social media sites?