Employer and Personal Brands Tango: #TChat Preview

Companies spend a huge chunk of time, marketing investment and human capital in building a brand. For people building personal brands the investment ratios might be different, but for both employer and individual, brand is an asset, a form of intellectual capital. In the HR, talent management and leadership realm we often are first to see fault lines emerging between employers and employees, and what’s becoming apparent is the possibility for conflict between employer and personal brands.

Before it happens — before employers feel cheated by employees building personal brands on the clock, before employers lose followers to employees who feel their brand is more important than the company’s, and before employees feel coerced into the role of brand advocate — it’s time to have an adult discussion about how to create an environment where employer and personal brands can coexist and complement each other.

This week, the TalentCulture community will explore the boundaries separating and areas of overlap between employer and personal brands. We’ll review the essence of employer brand and propose best–practices for promoting and protecting employer brands. As well, we’ll look at how technology has changed the landscape for employee and employer brands alike.

I often don’t think it’s hard to determine when employer brand trumps personal brand, but for some it’s an open question, so we’ll add that to the discussion. My goal is to unearth insight into how personal and employer brands can coexist to mutual benefit. It’s possible, too, that a toxic workplace may be revealed by employees active in social media, so we’ll discuss strategies for identifying bad vibes and containing the damage (and learning from the experience.)

Let’s build our brands! It’s fun.

Here are this week’s questions for the #TChat forum:

Q1: What is the essence of an employer brand?

Q2: How have innovations in technologies altered employees’ relationships with their employers’ brands?

Q3: Which needs the other more, employee personal brands or the employer brand? Why?

Q4: What does it look like when employers’ brands exist dynamically & positively with employees’ personal brands?

Q5: How can leadership right an employer brand when employees’ personal brands reveal a toxic workplace culture?

Susan Strayer, SPHR (@SusanStrayer), will be our guest moderator this week. That’s appropriate and timely: At ERE Expo 2012 Fall, Susan will deliver a presentation on how employees’ personal brands can strengthen the employer brand. Founder of Exaqueo, where she helps start-up and high-growth organizations sort through their employer brands and talent strategies, Susan is a top 100 influencer in HR.

We’re happy and honored to have Susan leading the #TChat tweets on Wednesday, Aug. 29, from 7-8pm ET (6-7pm CT, 4-5pm PT, or wherever you are), to talk shop with us about employer brands and personal brands doing the tango.

Look for all of us, on the #TChat stream: yours truly (@MeghanMBiro) and Kevin W. Grossman (@KevinWGrossman), as well as Sean Charles (@SocialMediaSean), Salima Nathoo (@SocialSalima) and Brent Skinner (@BrentSkinner). We can’t wait for your tweets.

Image Credit: gmarcos1 on Flickr

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