Harvard Business Review reported earlier this year that a bad employer reputation costs a company an additional 10% of cost per hire. Personally, I think that number is waaay low. Employer reputation more than just building a positive employer brand using digital media including LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Much of the benefit and detriment of an “employer brand” is effectively outside our locus of control.
An Employer brand is like an iceberg. There is so much more than what we can see from the surface of the water. It’s invisible and has a much greater impact because word of mouth conversations and digital engagements are hard to measure.
Because of this employer brand is more than just monitoring and managing forums like Quora or company profile pages on Glassdoor and Indeed, but that’s typically what we, as bosses and leaders see. Hence, the top of the iceberg, but that’s not what took down the Titanic. It’s what we can’t see as employers that is the most detrimental to our brand, business and culture. Employer brand should be about not just sharing about the brand but working to make changes, adjustments and improvements to a hiring or employer process that needs changing.
If it’s the sharing of experiences is happening in the consumer spaces, you can rest easy or in this case uneasily that candidates and employers are talking about their employers online. The most effective and personal medium for engagement, candidate, employer or consumer right now is video and there are so many options either pre-recorded video or live broadcasts on social media sites like YouTube, Facebook, Periscope, Snapchat or Instagram.
Video As the Most Personal Type of Engagement
Adults are spending 1 hour and 16 minutes of their time daily on digital devices whether they are watching streamed content on Netflix or Amazon or social media shared content. Digital video is growing in popularity as more candidates and employees become more comfortable using their laptops, iPads and phones every single day.
Our videos whether personal or professionals, brand or off-brand tell a story. Viewers are better able to connect by watching video. It’s the closest thing we have to talking to someone in person. Video allows us to scale our reach and message. We can see, feel and understand facial expressions, look into their eyes and connect with the person’s body language all through a video that is streamed or uploaded online. Your employees know this which is why they are talking, streaming and sharing their personal experiences in working for your company.
I put together a collection of videos I found on various video and streaming sites from employees who talk about their experiences with their employer including several resignations whether recorded and presumed also later shared with their boss or some recorded their resignation live.
The Truth About an Employee’s Experience Working at Sephora
The Starbucks Song by Written and Performed by a Now Former Employee
One Employee’s Experience Working at Lush
Why an Employee Quit Her Job at Hollister
Flight Attendant Explains Why She Quit Her Job
Worker Quits His Job Complete with Marching Band
TV Anchor Who Quits on Air
Hear What One Cast Member Says Why She Quit Disney
Employer Quits Live on Air & Smokes Pot
Employee Quits and Posts His Recorded Resignation and Termination with Manager
Employee Talks About Getting Suspended From Job
Check Out This Guy’s Video Resignation Notice
Viral Resignation Notice Via Interpretive Dance
Why do employees choose to talk about their jobs using video streaming and other digital media properties? All of us at some point in our lives have chosen to share a personal experience especially a bad one with a friend or family member. Video and social media allow us to do that in scale or across oceans with connections, strangers or those with a common interest online. I don’t think it’s all about being an internet celebrity and getting 15 minutes of fame.
I like to think these employees share these stories and real time resignations because they are desperate to send a message one last time to the company and their boss that they and their work and contribution matters or maybe they are looking for an ear or shoulder to lean on from their community. Social media, particularly video is the new town hall that’s happening online but using personal storytelling and sharing powered by video. It doesn’t matter that these employees don’t care or they do care and understand the ramifications of how they might be damaging their personal or professional reputations.
The bigger question when you watch this collection of videos is are we, the employer, the business leader and the manager listening? More importantly, does this video collection move you and your boss enough to take those employee complaints, make organizational change and employee concerns more seriously? The media loves a good termination story and sadly most employers aren’t able or are unwilling to share personnel and employee information with the masses or the press. We can’t take a defensive approach. Otherwise, we are left managing the damage instead of making our work and business a better and more profitable place.