It is but natural to complain about anything or anyone annoying that you confront at work. Not to worry, this is where Social Media Etiquette comes into play. So that you don’t go foul mouth all over the web in the spur of the moment. Smallbizsense has smartly put together why said etiquette is very necessary and how you can put them to use.
Why Social Media Etiquette is Important for Businesses
As Winckworth Sherwood points out the only thing that has changed is that nowadays instead of mouthing-off at home or down the pub people go onto social media and express their frustrations there.
And social media is so public and leaky that all sorts of dubious comments are getting out into the public domain unintentionally.
Then, of course many companies are using social media to promote their businesses or to communicate with their customers.
And in anything but the smallest organisation this means that marketing and communications staff are posting regularly on social media in a much more casual manner than has ever been used for business communications before, and they need to be very clear about the boundaries of acceptability.
So, breatheHR considers that it is getting ever more important for organisations to have a well thought-through social media policy that enforces social media etiquette and one that is regularly kept up to date.
This policy should contain illustrations of its points with examples of unacceptable comments and it should make a distinction between what is considered misconduct and gross misconduct (i.e. dismissible behaviour).
Two Ways to Enforce Social Media Etiquette and Types of Social Media Policies to Create
Social Media Etiquette Tips for Personal Use
In your policy about personal use of social media at work, start off with when it is acceptable to use it. This is going to be similar to any policy you have on personal use of email and internet.
You may already have rules that say this should be confined to lunch time and outside office hours, and if so you can replicate the same rules for social media use. But do make sure that all employees are aware and regularly reminded about this policy.
With social media etiquette, privacy settings Privacy settings are probably the biggest issue for personal use of social media.
Tip 1: Require your staff to update their privacy settings
Firstly, you can require that all staff set their privacy settings to keep their comments private to their own circle of friends and family, and make no reference to their employer’s name in their profile.
This, in theory, would keep all their comments out of the public domain and unrelated to their employment. But it is so easy for friends to copy and forward comments into the public domain, that even tight privacy does not make social media a safe place to make derogatory comments.
So you have to make clear to staff that they must treat all comments made on social media as public regardless of their privacy settings, and require of them that they make no reference to their employer at all.
So far, so good. But then we know that privacy settings on social media sites and apps, often change with updates, so it is important to remind staff to check their privacy settings regularly in order to keep them secure.
Tip 2: Monitor your employees behavior on social networks while they are at work
Some employers choose to monitor the internet for comments about the company from either staff or customers. If you want to do this, or even consider you might want to do it in the future, then it is important to tell staff in order to avoid them arguing in a dispute that it is a breach of trust.
Also, in research studies employees have often said that they would have been more careful about what they said on social media if they had known their employers would read their comments.