Set ground rules for employee social media use

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You have expectations with employees regarding their job performance, says Jolene Griffin with Dairy Management Inc. Expectations for social media use should be no different.

Lay some ground-rules regarding personal social media use and how it reflects on their reputation, as well as that of your dairy. “Remind them that whatever they say on social media lives on forever, meaning that future employers can look back at Facebook pages or Tweets,” Griffin says. “A good rule-of-thumb is to remind people to never say anything on social media that you wouldn’t say to your 85-year-old grandmother.”

Also, be sure to be clear with your expectations if you offer interested employees an opportunity to share Facebook postings or Tweeting duties on your farm’s accounts.

Give them the right information, acceptable vocabulary to use with consumers and background tools, such as consumer-tested key messages, so they are equipped to communicate your desired message. Encourage employees to find their own “voice” and talk about things from their perspective, letting their personality shine through.

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HENAGAR  |  March, 01, 2012 at 01:27 PM


pa  |  March, 01, 2012 at 02:33 PM

It certainly is an employer's business to have procedures for social media use during working hours or as it pertains to their farm. An employer has the right to expect an employee to follow guidelines required if they are tweeting or taking video clips of their workplace or chores! An employer has the right to prohibit an employee from using social media during tasks on the farm. Their reason may be because of safety measures during equipment operation, or because they do not want their farming operation to be misrepresentated by employees who are not trained in public relations and all aspects of their business, or simply because social media use is distracting, disruptive and wastes time on the job! What an employee says on social media outside of work hours is their right, sure, but if it reflects unfavorably on me, my business or their job satisfaction, it is my right to fire them. Best the employer let the employee know their expectations for social media use - good article!

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