Great! One of your employees has started a blog. Now what?
When I started blogging, a former employer freaked out. I would leak all of our secrets! I’d say something that reflected poorly on the company! I’d spill the beans on something highly confidential!
While I was never directly confronted about my blogging, I heard every complaint. Some of them even seem valid. The last thing you need is a member of your team compromising the rest of the team’s efforts.
If you’re running a top-notch organization, any one of your team members should be able to:
- Clearly communicate the culture and values of the team
- Be a brand ambassador for your organization
- Know what to share and what not to share
These aren’t “internet-safety” or social-media tips, they’re what any good organization should expect of its team members– online or off!
When your employees/team members start blogging:
Read the Blog: You’ve got to know what’s being shared. Additionally, some of your quieter team members might surprise you with excellent insights. Further, let the team member know that you’re reading along. She will appreciate your attention and know that you’re watching.
Encourage: When your team member posts something interesting, take him to lunch and pick his brain. This is also a great opportunity to foster the team member’s understanding and develop him. If he has posted something a little off-base, you could use this time to explore the topic with him and give him some guidance.
Address the Boundaries: You don’t need to have a sit-down conversation every time one of your team members signs up for WordPress. But as you’re reading and encouraging, it doesn’t hurt to remind the team member of your clients’ confidentiality.
Take Heart!: Your team member’s blog is more than just a band-wagon trend. It means she is ready and willing to learn and contribute. Invest some of your time in encouraging her to grow and bring that enthusiasm to work with her.
I’ll never forget how angry it made me when I heard (through the grapevine) that my boss was worried I would take “everything I had learned from him” and spread it to “the competition”. Blogs are great for sharing what we’ve learned, but they’re platforms for our unique ideas and points of view.
Resist the urge (if you have it) to freak out. Afford your team members some trust and use the opportunity to develop their leadership and technical skills. Most importantly, communicate to your team the value of its insight and unique expertise. What better way to create a marketplace for fresh ideas than to foster a blogging team? Teams who blog together learn together.