Brand ambassadors amplify your company’s message by sharing your updates and accomplishments with friends, family and professional networks via social at every opportunity. Being invested in your vision, they embody the values of your organization and serve as the embodiment of your culture–a model for others in the company to emulate–but this enthusiasm needs to be nurtured consistently over time.
If brand ambassadors become disengaged, they can use that same social reach to communicate their dissatisfaction, which is equally as powerful as when they were previously announcing the virtues of your company. Therefore, every interaction with your employees should be viewed as an investment in brand ambassadorship.
How disengaged employees can affect your brand
Well for one, when employees feel disrespected, unappreciated and disappointed in their company, they can react in a number of ways that can be damaging to the organization. It’s important to emphasize the word “feel” because when it comes to employee engagement, we are often dealing with feelings, emotions and perceptions.
We also know that actively disengaged employees are not only unhappy at work, they actually act out on their unhappiness thereby undermining and negatively impacting the work of their engaged coworkers. This can adversely affect the attitudes and performance of each person (internally and externally) who comes in contact with the actively disengaged employee. Consider this: people are likely to share a good experience with three people, but will share a bad one with ten or more.
How to foster brand ambassadors
Frequent and timely employee recognition improves engagement, reinforces the bond between an employee and employer and strengthens an employee’s loyalty to the organization. Social recognition has an even greater impact by taking a recognition event, and amplifying it via activity streams. As a result, not only does this motivate and guide the behavior of the individual recognized, it communicates to peers that this is an organization where exceptional work and effort are recognized and rewarded. This can mean the difference between employees saying, “I’ve been with my company for five years and I love it” vs. “My company doesn’t really care about its employees and isn’t that great to work for” when asked how they feel about working at your organization.
Your most engaged workers are amongst your greatest assets in promoting your brand. At this very moment, your employees are talking to friends, family, colleagues and customers in person and virtually via email, chat or social about your organization. With the rapid pace of communication and the numerous channels to do so, it’s more important than ever to ensure what they’re saying is positive.