Is having 600 million friends a good thing?

Some of the greatest challenges our clients face today include managing their employees’ use of social networks and enacting social media policies that work in the real world.

Crossing the line between the personal and the professional happens in the click of a mouse and most often, in my opinion, on Facebook.  This largest, and Oscar bound, of social networks began primarily as a gathering of folks looking up, and connecting with, school and summer camp chums.  Businesses soon realized the potential and started to get in on the action with corporate Facebook pages.

The most important means of getting yourself noticed on Facebook is by having lots of friends and being “liked” by lots of people – just like in high school.  Natuarally, companies figured out that the best way to build their Facebook presence was by “friending” their employees – one big happy family, right?  Not quite.  Although Facebook is fairly easy to use, it also makes it easy to forget who all of these newfound friends are.  This can prove to be a challenge when one of these friends is your boss.  For one of the epic Facebook exchanges between an employer and an employee – click here (I would have replicated it in the post but this is a family blog).

Let me be clear. I believe that a corporate Facebook page can have a profoundly positive impact on your business.  The wrong approach, in my view, adopted by numerous companies, has been to block Facebook in the workplace.  This solution is both counterproductive and unworkable.   It takes most or all of your front line team (your employees) off the social media playing field, and they can all still use Facebook outside the office.  Sensible social media policies coupled with employee training are a better answer. For Social Media Training information click here.

For the latest and greatest in the world of Web and Social Media, follow me on Twitter at Twitter.com/mikerabinovici

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