The latest communication sites may be the first time some companies have given staff a space to share their thoughts in a ‘public’ (albeit organisation focused) online space that isn’t Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn.
Before I get into what you could talk about though,it’s important to remember that whether you’re able to add a blog post will depend on what your IT admin team have turned on (or off) in Office 365. For example, at the moment you can use Delve where anyone can write a blog post at any time, but Delve is being retired later this year apparently – https://redmondmag.com/articles/2019/11/22/microsoft-ending-delve-blogs.aspx and the recommendation is for organisations to use a SharePoint Communications Site. Therefore, it might be worth lobbying your communications and IT teams to have a communications site that allows anyone in the company to post news up; they can also have one that’s for ‘offical’ corporate messages.
And it’s not always easy to know what you can or can’t talk about either. After all, most of your work colleagues won’t be familiar with your children, pets, weird family members or off-beat hobbies. Which usually means sharing the latest update in a long running saga often won’t make as much sense here as it does elsewhere.
But if you can’t really talk about familiar topics what can you share that makes sense in your work environment?
As a long standing blogger I thought it might be helpful to make a few suggestions that could help to establish yourself as a force to be reckoned within your team. Feel free to add your own suggestions in the comments section at the bottom.
- Hints and tips. Is there something your colleagues find particularly annoying or frustrating? If you know a work-around or a quicker way of achieving an objective why not share it.
- What about sharing any ideas you have that could improve working practices or team building exercises.
- Events coming up and post-event updates. If you’re organising events why not write a series of posts providing information about different facets of the event in advance of it happening. After the event you could do a post-event update.
- Team and work photographs. But don’t forget to ask permission before sharing a photo of your colleagues. If in doubt don’t include.
- ‘A day in the life of …’. If you’ve always yearned to be a journalist why not host a regular interview with different members of your team. The questions don’t have to be boring and could be used to bring out all sorts of useful knowledge. I’ve been hosting a regular interview on my ‘other’ blog for authors, you can see read some of them here: https://lindaph.co.uk/category/thursday-throng/
- Helpful resources. I find that YouTube videos are a great way to teach people IT tasks. Is there a resource or website you turn to regularly that will help other members of your team?
- Change is inevitable in our working environments. Updated Government policies bring new challenges, and technology enables different ways of working. Encouraging a broader debate about the change that affects us is a great way to explore the positive and negative impacts.
- Project updates. If you’re working on a project you could use your blog to post regular updates giving an ‘on the ground’ perspective of the day to day work that gets the project to completion.
- Frequently Asked Questions. We all know the questions our customers, clients and colleagues ask all the time. How about a series of posts that detail the question and the answer. You can then share these with colleagues and internal customers.
- Thought for the day. There are three items guaranteed to be shared across any social network: cute animals, bloopers and, believe it or not, deep and meaningful quotations. You can search for relevant quotations on almost any topic on sites such as http://www.brainyquote.com/.
Things to avoid in your blog posts:
- Too much negativity, even if you’re talking about something negative you can say it in a positive way.
- Don’t make it personal. Ranting about colleagues is never a good idea in a public forum.
- Copyright theft. Don’t pick random images off the web through a Google search; just because you can see them doesn’t mean you can use them.I use Pixabay to get my images and always credit the creator in the post.
- Avoid copy and paste from other websites as you could inadvertently commit copyright theft. If you want to share someone else’s sentiments, think about how it relates to you and then rewrite it in your own unique way.
It goes without saying that blogging takes time; time to think about, time to plan and finally time to write. Giving yourself a regular theme helps with the planning and preparation and makes it easier to get into the habit.
Image courtesy: https://pixabay.com/users/voltamax-60363/