And Facebook Live – the popular live video streaming service – has quickly become an integral part of Workplace’s appeal, which enables broadcasts straight to employees’ phones/desktops regardless of location.
Here are Facebook’s top tips on holding a successful Q&A session via Facebook Live:
* Use a tripod and microphone to create a higher quality experience.
* Create polls to source questions from employees before hosting Q&A streaming sessions.
* For greater engagement, prioritise the most popular questions (found at the top of the poll) and ask them first.
* Practice a Q&A beforehand to avoid embarrassing slip ups.
* Be on time.
* Have a strong internet connection.
* Call people by name.
* Thank them for participating.
* Have a moderator assigned to deal with interaction and comments.
A Workplace spokesperson said: “Many of you have used live video to broadcast company meetings, share customer stories, special moments and more.
“Live video works for everyone: from retailers who are using it to train their staff on new products all the way up to leadership teams who are announcing important updates and hosting Q&A sessions.”
Kiera Lawlor, Head of Happiness at award-winning social media agency Social Chain, explains how creating engaging campaigns for its clients begins with engaging its own people.
Can you remember your first day at work? Even for the most experienced of us, starting a new job is daunting.
Clammy palms and the panic that you’ll forget your new manager’s name – sound familiar?
But imagine a first day when the whole company comes out to welcome you, and you’re handed a gift box brimming with tech and goodies. That’s what Sean Brown, Head of Talent, discovered when he arrived at Social Chain.
Captioning a photo of his new MacBook, social media bible, branded hoodie, stationary and a bottle of rum to toast his arrival, Sean took to LinkedIn to write: “I think I’m going to enjoy myself here.”
But the welcome pack is just the beginning when it comes to how the agency looks after its people.
Today Social Chain has a reach of more than a billion, counts Apple, Spotify, and Puma among its clients, and can get a brand trending in minutes.
Its motto is ‘Deeper than engagement’ – out to create projects that resonate with people and inspire them into action.
But the company firmly believes this begins by engaging its own team – and that’s the responsibility of Kiera Lawlor, Head of Happiness.
“I think engagement is a key thing in the workplace,” says Kiera. “If we’re engaged in our own professional environment, we’re better placed to help brands to engage their consumers.
“It’s any employer’s dream to have staff who get up in the morning and want to go to work, and that’s genuinely how people feel here.”
But how has Social Chain created its highly motivated environment? Kiera and the team have created a programme that hones in on people’s happiness and individuality at all stages of their employment – and it starts at the recruitment stage.
Kiera said: “One of the massive things we look for when hiring is whether someone’s going to fit in with the culture. They might not be the most experienced at what they do, but we’d rather have their personality and what they can add to the team than someone who’s experienced but doesn’t share the same enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is key.”
Selecting passionate employees is one thing, but it’s another to maintain that same level of drive in the months and years that follow.
Kiera has this covered too: “We all have personal development programmes. I sit down with new starters and find out what they want to learn about and what we can do to make it happen. We call them Happiness Meetings. If a person has a development idea, they can chase it – no one will ever turn around and say no here.”
Team members also share their own knowledge at weekly Lunch and Learn sessions. Over a meal put on by Social Chain, employees take it in turns to give presentations on a hobby or skill they’re using to benefit their work.
And that’s not the only time there’s food in the office. Social Chain understands that well-fed employees are happy employees, so the kitchen is restocked twice a week with croissants and cereals, snacks, lunch options and – best of all – bacon sandwiches to banish the thought of Monday-morning blues.
Whether it’s National Gin Day or National Cupcake Day, Kiera keeps on top of all reasons for the team to celebrate together.
“I want to make sure there’s always something going on to keep it exciting,” she said.
And what with a fully stocked bar, a slide and ball pit, and French Bulldogs Louis and Pablo wandering freely between the benches, Social Chain hasn’t just created a workplace; it’s built a creative playground.
But it’s about more than just having fun. Playing hard lends itself to something else – working hard. And Social Chain’s people certainly do lots of that.
“We have barely any recorded sick days. Holidays are unlimited – we can take as many as we want – but because people love being here, they don’t abuse that. It’s just nice to know we’re trusted to get on with our work and get it finished.”
It’s down to this hard work that Social Chain has thrived so much in such a short period of time. In just over a year, the team has gone from 15 people to 74.
The business has also recently opened offices in Berlin and New York. By looking after its people, its people are delivering amazing projects for their clients, and these clients are propelling the business forward. Social Chain has created a thriving chain reaction – and it all begins with engagement.
Kiera said: “Employee engagement here means that everyone’s dream is to see the company get as big as it can possibly get. Everyone is so invested in Social Chain. They want to see it grow.”
Julia Brook, Director of PR Services at Lea Barn Consultancy, explains why embracing digital means businesses must safeguard their reputation with employees – not just external customers.
In today’s social media-driven world, organisations are more exposed than ever before.
Gone are the days when bad news could be buried and unethical corporate behaviour swept under the carpet. In the digital economy, businesses face higher levels of scrutiny from customers, colleagues, prospective employees, shareholders and stakeholders alike.
Companies of all sizes – and in every industry – have to be accountable for what they say and do, with instances of unethical or unjust behaviour managed proactively rather than reactively. Just ask Donald Trump.
So while there is a huge opportunity and, indeed, imperative for organisations to invest in and benefit from new communication platforms, a focus on reputational risk must be a priority.
This has obvious implications for internal communications and employee relations. Research from Accenture Strategy found that 60 per cent of employees publicly share information about their rewards, salaries and opinions of their manager’s performance on social media sites.
Similarly, websites like glassdoor.co.uk have risen to prominence, enabling professionals to share reviews on the best and worst companies to work for, as well as compare salaries and experiences.
Such sites have the potential to impact your brand not only with potential employees but also customers whom are likely to make purchase decisions based on reputation. The media furore over zero-hours contracts and backlash again Sports Direct springs to mind.
Internal communications takes on new importance in this environment. If organisations truly care about attracting and retaining the top talent, it’s vital they:
• Are in tune with their workforce
• Communicate relevant and honest information on a regular basis
• Have the overall aim of ensuring employees become brand advocates in the same way as external customers.
It’s also important that the workforce is your first port of call when crisis hits. Bearing in mind the speed of social media, internal communications have a key role to play in keeping employees informed about what has happened and what is happening.
When corporate reputation is on the line, speedy internal communications are now as important as preparing external statements. Employees should not have to read about bad news on social media before receiving the official (and honest) version of events from the senior team.
So while digital provides exciting opportunities for all organisations, we shouldn’t forget that it also needs careful management.
Companies aren’t able to hide, so they have to be open and honest with their employees – great internal process and dedicated communications platforms will mean an external crisis or threat to corporate reputation need not also be an internal one.