I recently read an interesting blog post on Brand For Talent. The author, Libby Sartain, says that organizations across the globe are struggling with their reputations as employers. Those employers need to engage their workers as fans, while reaching out for new workers as the economy begins its turnaround. She also asks: is there a difference between corporate branding and employer branding? Well, according to Sartain, there is. While companies such as Apple and Nike are able to rely on the power and strength of their corporate brand to attract talent, this is not the case for companies with less powerful brands.
Connected employees are ambassadors for their employers. Some employers might find this frightening, but it is also inevitable. Some companies will worry about the message that their employees are spreading across their social networks and the Internet, and complain about their inability to control it; but others would pay good money for employees who are so engaged that they will work at all hours and act as corporate social media ambassadors at all times.
Social media are new, and their value is not entirely clear, especially to businesses that are doing just fine as they are, thank you very much. Heck, it's even possible that blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other Web 2.0 and social networking services will turn out to be passing fads, in which case, maybe companies that ignore them will have the last laugh on the matter. I don't know about that, but I will say this: the generation that grew up on the Internet and began to enter the labour market over the last decade is unlikely to want to shift to a way of doing things that doesn't involve the Internet and its associated applications and gadgets. And their childrenwell, who can say how connected they'll be. It would take an extremely authoritarian approach to return to the workplace of our parents, and likely an approach that looks backward rather than ahead. But enough of prediction, let's talk about some interesting stuff!