My learning experience at Impact99 HR Summit 2012
By: Lydia Liao, MBA Candidate
Utilizing social media to instil a sense of trust in your business
One of the key takeaways for me from the Impact99 HR SUmmit is that when engaging with the online community via social media, it is crucial to be authentic and transparent in order to garner trust for your brand and your organization. Even if you make a mistake, be honest about it, and that vulnerability will gain and retain consumer trust and become a powerful part of your human brand.
On the topic of trust, the opening keynote speech stated an interesting fact: when external customers seek information about a company, they seek out people like themselves and employees of the company. This is because consumers trust these two groups to give an honest testimony of the organization more than the CEOs of the organization. This stresses another idea which the keynote raised, which is to empower your employees to use social media on the organization’s behalf.
In the MIS course in my MBA program, we learned that to effectively execute a firm’s social media strategy, it is essential to establish social media policies for directors, executives, managers, and employees. The opening keynote speech agreed with this theory and said firms need to train and educate employees on what the company’s brand image is, and what effect and impact employees’ words have on this image. Educating employees to understand what the company’s brand values are would help them understand what the community expects and wants from the firm’s social media platforms.
The Summit also provided me with a great piece of advice for management in terms of what content they ought to post: set up themes that your employees can post under that have relevant content for your clients, industry and company. By doing so, managers are able to trust that their employees will post content that they approve of. The presenters at Impact99 also stressed that the policies established should include roles and responsibilities, accountability, transparency, accuracy and lawfulness, a theory which complemented much of what I had already been taught in my MIS course at the Beedie School of Business.