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March 4, 2011
Harvest Your Internal Buzz
Here's a terrific concept for giving focus and identity to your organization's efforts and energies. Jay Baer and Amber Naslund, authors of The NOW Revolution, suggest you to create an internal social network to collect and distill your daily happenings. At the end of each day, convene a group to sift through them briefly for "a message for tomorrow" on your external social media channels.

There's nothing like treating an organization as a system of information, listening closely to its people and underlining what you're hearing that's of identity-building value. An internal social media tool like Yammer makes that readily possible now.

"Share as much as you can via the internal social media system, even the things that might seem minor or unimportant," Baer and Naslund urge. "One person’s ‘‘whatever’’ is another person’s ‘‘a-ha!’’ moment or golden tidbit of information....

"Updates can and should be created from all corners of the organization: minutes from your social media team meetings; new account wins (and losses) from the sales team; new initiatives from marketing; new hires, promotions, and departures from HR; competitor updates; finance and legal updates; new product or service offerings; and especially, customer stories and questions (with answers!) from the customer service department.

"Perhaps your company isn’t large enough to have departments and divisions. That’s not an obstacle. Give all of your people access to a central communications hub or tool, give them a few guidelines, and turn on the internal storytelling faucet. You’ll be amazed at the great information that’s been sitting untapped in people’s heads or filing cabinets."

Sort  through all this information late each day for a "Message of the Day" to be posted externally tomorrow. An information gathering routine like this can keep your organization well-connected for internal insights and fresh in the eyes of your external publics. Harvest your buzz, daily!

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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