Business Productivity & Reasons to Unblock Social Media Sites
Steve Matthews’ Web Law Connected column on Slaw.ca Social Media & Business Productivity struck a nerve with me today. He talks about how there are real reasons on both side of the argument whether to block or not block staff from using social networking sites. I like how he breaks down both sides of the issue. I have to admit being on the “not blocking” side of things. But, reading his article has made me soften my view, if perhaps only slightly.
That being said, I am speaking Wednesday at the Acuity Forums conference Executing Social Media [pdf] and will be tackling the big question of social media and social networking inside the organization. I’m incorporating some of Steve’s thinking. I also came up with a list of ways staff may be using social media that should not be blocked.
Many staff have legitimate reasons for accessing these sites, such as:
- monitoring the Internet about your company and brands
- engaging in public relations on behalf of your company
- researching what your competitors are doing for Competitive Intelligence and Business Intelligence programs
- checking potential business partners
- legal due diligence
- background checks on new recruits
- learning from experts in their areas (for free!) from sites such as blogs and podcasts
- attending professional webinars
- organizing professional association committees and conferences
- connecting with business contacts through networking sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook
- registering for professional development events and training through sites such as Facebook, Upcoming.org and Meetup.com
What other reasons are there for giving staff access to social media/social networking sites?