I saw this question in my title on a Meetup discussion board earlier and replied: “No, employers should not secretly monitor Facebook activity. They should overtly monitor and encourage it. Welcome to Gary Vaynerchuk’s ‘The Thank You Economy’.”
I also started
two five discussion threads on LinkedIn and encouraged viewers to comment there or here on the blog (if they wanted to get a back link to their Web sites). Since, alas, both LinkedIn groups are ‘closed’ – so sad with regard to search engine capabilities!
I, of course, answered the ‘yes or no‘ question and added a comment. Thus I encouraged an open ended reply and ensuing discussion. I did this as any good salesperson would, to see where, if there were any open takers, it might lead to.
Here, on my blog, I will make several points as to why I believe employers should openly monitor those social media happenings.
- You want to know what is going on, whether coming from your employees, friends, clients or prospects. That is the way you find out what you are doing right so you can momentarily pat yourself on the back and press on to greater heights. But more importantly, you can learn what you need to immediately fix (complaints) or reply in defense to, as well as uncover potential improvements (appropriate suggestions) and/or new potential open markets.
- Your employees are spending time on Social Media whether you like it or not. And some of them are doing it on your dime! Just read the reports and don’t act stupid nor surprised when you uncover that.
- Employees can help you spread the word about your business or practice. It’s called WOMA (word of mouth advertising), only it’s via digital technology in this day and age. And, they should be encouraged to do so, for they have a vested interest as well. You must be there to make sure their future paychecks get issued and clear their banks.
- You want to know who your promoters (ambassadors of good will) are, as well as those employees who are complaining. Wouldn’t you like to turn the complainers into promoters? If not, replace them with someone who buys into your culture and will promote you, on campus and off! You also want to see who the wallflowers might be so you can possibly make them converts as well.
You can believe me or you can read Gary Vaynerchuk’s slant on it. He has, after all, better credentials than I do and aspires to buy the New York Jets. I merely want to help people fulfill their dreams, not mine since I am living it! But Gary deals with the ‘big boys’ now and you can’t buy his time at a reasonable price, although his books are filled with wisdom and reasonable priced. (Notice no link to Amazon.com since they disassociated themselves with Illinois retailers with the ridiculous law they must withhold sales tax on all purchases. Another fine mess and thank you Governor Quinn!) Plus, Vaynerchuk hasn’t even returned my latest email (be boasts he answers every one eventually) and it has been a while! Seems he recently replies via a canned video explaining how he is so busy with those $20,000 speaking fees. (I think he only claims to enjoy selling cups on Ebay for $20 as a high!)
What’s opinion slant on this matter? Don’t just be a wallflower out there! FYI. You can’t have fun doing the electric slide until you learn the four part combination of four steps and get onto the dance floor!
Jack, are you listening?