Social media: Do your employees know where to draw the line?Add To My Clippings Alt Text

Many a disgruntled employee could probably be found day-dreaming about firing the ultimate parting shot at their employer. Jerry Maguire's exit set the standard in the 1990s, but Mr Allen could certainly teach Jerry Maguire a thing or two about the power of the digital age. In an explosive email sent to all UK staff at media agency MEC, Mr Allen pulled no punches with his scathing assessment of his manager. As well as accusing the manager of bullying and discrimination he somewhat sensationally suggested that he had engaged in “sexual relations” with a job applicant on the day he interviewed her. In no time the email was shared outside the agency and was trending on Twitter and other social media. From there articles appeared in daily papers and on industry blogs and websites.

The whole episode serves a useful reminder about the importance of educating employees about the power of social media and being clear about where your business draws the line between what can be shared and discussed and what cannot. Most agencies rely on their employees using personal twitter feeds or other microblogging sites to draw attention to what they are doing at work. Without a clear policy about how your employees should use social media you risk losing control of your brand and damaging your reputation.

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April 2014