What happens when a staff person decides, on their personal Facebook page, to post something negative about your organization? What if a staff person decides to post to a message board and have their title/position in their signature file, giving the perception that their opinion is the opinion of your business? Your organization can avoid this by offering up a strong social media policy while not infringing on their personal opinions.
Despite all the possible warnings by management, it never ceases to amaze me as to how many employees need to continually be reminded that they need to be careful as to what they post on social media sites so it doesn’t have a negative reflection on your organization. This while not squashing their personal opinions or freedoms. The gray area of posting information on your organization involves the perception of what people think of your organization, especially if there’s a possible misconception of whether or not it is the “official” word from your organization.
Make a social media policy stand on its own. Do not lump it in with your employee manual, and most of all, be specific. Make it clear when employees sign up for technology access that they have read and signed off on your organizations social media policy.
Who is your social media representative? Is there one person (such as a media or marketing representative) that is the official spokesperson for the organization? State that clearly in the social media policy as well. Make that person available to staff to answer grey area questions when it comes to posting company information or opinions in social media.
Occasionally remind staff about the social media policy. Sometimes a gentle reminder via email to all staff to review the policy and keep it front-of-mind due to the constant nature of social media and people using it.