Beyond #SocialMedia Policy…The “Mom” Standard

Crisis Whisperer Lisa Matheson Mom StandardThis morning I read the story on where an ER nurse was fired after reposting an image of the aftermath of an ER room — not for violating policy but for being “insensitive.”

Even the best of social media policies has grey or “interpretive” areas.  So how do you offer pre-posting guidance to your employees?

One easy rule of thumb is to use the “Mom” standard.  Even if your own mother wasn’t on the cover of a parenting magazine, you understand the simple to apply concept.

Before employees post any work-related content, suggest they ask themselves:

  1. If I post this, would my mom be proud that I did?
  2. If this post were about my mom, could she or I be offended, embarrassed or feel that her privacy was violated?

Of course, you could also say that if you have to ask those questions in the first place then you shouldn’t post it.  There is some wisdom in that approach.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

At the end of the day, it’s important that your employees understand and follow your social media (and related) policies to protect themselves and to manage your organization’s reputation. Using the “Mom” standard can be an easy way to explain policy and get your employees to adopt good work-related posting habits.