Impact of Social Media on Business and Company Image

social media

With the booming of the web especially after the emergence and spread of social media networks, people start to rely on these networks to make their everyday life choices including shopping and purchase decisions. For the great impact these online networks in shaping customers’ decisions and build their own views, it becomes crucial for organization to have a neat and significant presence on these networks and keep close to customers.

Whether in physical or virtual world, every organization aims at building a good reputation and reflects a positive image to their customers. Online, social media platforms offer great opportunities to spread the word of mouth about businesses worldwide. That’s why, social media networks become one of the important mediums on which brands are built.

A new study carried by researchers from Romania and Thailand has highlighted the impact of social media on a company’s image. This case study “was conducted to a 258 respondents, having the age between 18 and 41 years old.” To answer the question of how often consumers read or actively take part on discussions initiated in online social networks, the study finds that “2.44% never, 26.83% sometimes, 51.22% often and 19.51% always.”

Researchers investigated also if users on social networks pay “more attention to the online discussion related to the products/ services they are frequently using.” Then, 82.49% of the respondents answered the question positively and confirmed that they “are attentive to this kind of information.”

Social media networks then play an important role in shaping the company’s image and how it is perceived by customers. Researchers stated that the study result is giving insightful conclusion that “the company’s image is related to all three constructions:  the users’ social influence, the organizational promotion and the perceived image in OSN (online social networks).”

Many other studies have stressed on the importance of social media networks for businesses. This research for instance has dealt with the importance of virtual communities and how they can influence trust of online shoppers. As stated by the study, “virtual communities offer several advantages to e-tailers and opportunities for the interaction with members of virtual communities consumers”.

Another study also tackled the issue and stressed on the importance of social presence of businesses and how this presence affect customers’ trust. The study stated that “social presence is a determinant of trust in a retail website.”

In order to build a god relationship with customers and win their trust, the online business need to maintain a good social presence so as the customer feels of “being present with a real vendor. This feeling comes from the emotion during the interaction with the website” researchers stated.

Social media use continues to grow in a significant rate. So, companies need to take advantage of prospects offered by these networks to reach and connect with their audience and customers. Businesses have to take this in consideration and include social media in their marketing and overall business strategy.

As social media has become an important way to boost business growth and enhance presence in the market, companies should not ignore it and profit of these networks to reflect a good company image.

 

Employee’s Performance Evaluation Needs to Be Fair

job performance

 

Evaluating employee’s performance is one of the necessary procedures in an effective management process. Reviewing employee’s performance routinely provides an understanding between the organization and the employee.

Human resource management departments use what is known as performance appraisal or also known as performance review. This evaluation system helps measure employee’s performance and the organization allocates rewards based on that. Also it helps improve this performance by providing advice to put things on the right track. But this system needs to be fair and just.

A recently published study has investigated the organizational justice in performance appraisal system. The study which is carried by researchers from Graduate School of Business, Universiti Utara , Malaysia is published in an international Journal of Human Resources Management Research.

When the employee gets feedback including encouragement and criticism over his work he knows what is expected from him and knows if his performance is questioned.  The organization, in turn, will keep an eye on performing employees and reward them for that.

Also, this communication offers a chance for employers to know needs and concerns of their employees. As the study stated it “performance appraisal is an ongoing communication process between employees and supervisors. Supervisors should set expectations, monitor performance, and provide feedback to employees. By having this information, they will direct and develop employee performance by identifying training and development needs, correcting, and determining raises and promotions”.

But what makes success of this evaluation system is its fairness. Researchers stated that “the employee’s perception of fairness is the ultimate check for the success of the system… The components of fairness, procedural as well as distributive, should have a positive impact on the employee in order to make him accept the whole procedure and its results without any reluctance.”

What is important is the belief of employee in fairness of performance appraisal system. In contrary to previous researches done on this matter, researchers stressed that “interactional justice has more influence than other types of organizational justice in evaluating employee’s performance”.

Employees need to feel they are evaluated based on tasks and activities related to their job, and not something else. “The employees consider the procedure-based fairness is more important than the equal-distribution justice …In addition, they are willing to accept some injustice in the outcomes if they perceive the procedure itself to be fair” stated by the study.

If the employee does not believe in the appraisal system fairness, he will feel unsatisfied. Researchers mentioned that “the appraisal process can become a source of extreme dissatisfaction when employees believe the system is biased, political, or irrelevant… the employees need a good and fair performance appraisal system to provide them with feedbacks regarding their job, leading to their job satisfaction, and generating an increased work performance”.

A good communication is needed between the employee and organization over and after the evaluating process. “Employees are more concerned on interaction during and after the evaluation process. They are keen on knowing how they have been evaluated and what the feedback of their superior is after the performance appraisal process” researchers mentioned.

This interaction between the organization and its workforce “provides strong support for the relationship between employee perception of organizational justice in performance appraisal system and work performance. It also supports a significant relationship between performance appraisal satisfaction and work performance.”

Success of any performance appraisal system necessarily necessitates an interaction and active communication with the employee. As stated by the study “the important implication for organization is a pivotal role of the employees’ perceptions of the success or failure of a system. Therefore, the management has to keep in view the perceptions of their employees, while designing or modifying the appraisal system.”

Recommendations to Managers

The study provided a list of recommendations to the organizations and managers to follow to ensure success of their appraisal system:

  • Firms need to manage the performance appraisal process for under-performing staff, both male and female. In particular, it is recommended that managers consider the importance of providing the unsuccessful appraisees with hope in the future.
  • Managers should indicate that another, more developmental session, will follow in a few days to help those staffs to improve on the identified deficiencies and ensure that such a developmental intervention does indeed eventuate.
  • Motivate employees by positive feedback on appraisals. This gives employees a feeling of worth and value, especially when accompanied by a raise.
  • Managers need to recognize that performance appraisal systems are not one size fits all. Best practice may mean that performance systems need to be more open and flexible in order to account for individual differences.
  • Managers need to keep in mind that gender equity in the appraisal process does not mean treating all staff exactly the same and measuring the exact identical criteria.
  • Managers should give the employee greater involvement throughout the performance appraisal process and also train all the participants who are involved so that they can use the feedback more effectively.

Study: Qualities of Entrepreneur to Succeed a Business

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Success of an organization highly depends on the entrepreneur’s qualities and traits. Some entrepreneurs own success items and they turn things into success while others could not meet such big success if not, in worst cases, fail. So, what makes such successful entrepreneurs different from those that still turn around in their vicious circles and couldn’t meet any success?

Starting a business requires a lot of hard and smart work, and this is not at the hands of everyone. Even with a lot of plans and firm strategies, things won’t always work as expected. Some things that were supposed to work will just turn to fail, and unexpected problems will occur. At that moment comes the role of the entrepreneur that has the qualities of leading the business with passion and patience to come over such obstacles and reach success.

Small businesses are vulnerable and the presence of a good entrepreneur is more crucial. Small businesses are the locomotives of any economy and they have a considerable impact on the market.

A new study published recently has investigated qualities of entrepreneurship and “the common reasons that motivate people to become and work as entrepreneurs along with the constraints they face when starting and developing their business activity.” For that purpose researchers asked 250 people “engaging in the manufacturing trading and services sectors in Small and Medium Industries”.

To succeed as a leader of an organization, the entrepreneur needs a number of traits. The mentioned study stated what researchers called the five leadership qualities. The leader is required to be “honest, forward looking, competent, inspiring and intelligent”.

Besides, innovation and creativity is another factor that needs to be considered. A lot of studies have stressed the importance of innovation in business success, but implementing innovation requires an entrepreneur that believes in it and ready to adopt it into business.

Among the other factors researchers said contribute to the entrepreneur success including risk taking, innovation, communication, and connect with others.

  • Taking risk in taking appropriate decisions for their business activities;
    •    Innovation and creativity are the perception to accept new ideas;
    •    Confidence to be independent in taking decision and conduction their own business;
    •    Relationship with other to establish and maintain good relationship with people involved in business.

Being a successful leader doesn’t mean to be the source of every ideas, but to be intelligent enough to interact with others and get what necessary to push the business forward. As stated in the study, as entrepreneur you could learn a lot from “people you lead by asking intelligent questions and opinions.” Thus, you “will capable to increase credibility.”

The entrepreneur must be very intelligent by gently leading people toward understanding even when he knows the answer

  • Display emotions exactly in line with feelings
  • Make decision based on my core values
  • Demonstrate beliefs that are consistent with actions.

Researchers mentioned other entrepreneurial qualities that considered the significant characteristics for entrepreneur including to “believe in actions 59 % from respondents, analyze before actions 63% and listening the others 52 %”.

According to the results researchers acquired by their survey “Quality attributes of entrepreneurs that make big contribution to the high of entrepreneurial quality of business people are:

innovation and creativity 58,8%,

self confidence 63,2% ,

connection with others 55,6 %

and communication  51,6%

Researchers have summed up some of the factors needed to lead an organization to success into 4 main elements:

•    Planning – making decisions with regards to the future and making those plans happen.
•    Do – utilizing the fullest potential of resources people, capital and assets to ensure the success of the plans.
•    Activity – inspiring others to do their part effectively in carrying out the organization’s plans.
•   Controlling – step by step monitoring of the implementation process to see if changes are necessary to be made on the plans.

Read your Social Media Analytics to Improve Your Business

Social Media

 

Social media has become an important element for businesses and for their plans to build successful online presence. But what organizations still ignore and don’t pay much attention is to make necessary social analytics to reach success in their social media plans that will in turn help businesses boost their performance. This is what has been stressed in a recently published research.

The study which is published in a Journal of Internet Social Networking & Virtual Communities is carried by researcher Umar Ruhi at the school of management, University of Ottawa, Canada. The research finds that social analytics is an essential factor businesses can use in “evaluating the success of their own social media initiatives” that has a direct impact on their business.

According to the research “a successful social media analytics program can enable businesses to improve their performance management initiatives across various business functions.” It is mentioned that data was collected with the participation of 11 experts and “the participants who were invited to assist with this research were selected as experts in the field of social media analytics by virtue of their industry experience.”

Organizations are not yet into social media analytics and they haven’t yet fully benefited from the lessons they can learn from data collected. The study highlighted that all the experts that took part in the research “agreed that as a business practice, social media analytics is still in its infancy” and if done effectively it “can allow organizations to predict the behavior of various stakeholders and industry players within their business environment”.

The organizations should put more efforts in the aim of “understanding the potential for using social media metrics and analytics in the context of their business, in defining their business objectives and requirements”.

What businesses still inquire is an accurate and a “satisfying answer” on the weight of their social media presence and its return on investment (ROI). The study stated that “some marketing professionals are experimenting and redefining ROI in terms of social media specific outcomes”. The “consultants have recommended the use of Return on Influence or Return on Engagement as being more appropriate in the context of social media.” The study clarified. However, “participants concurred that even these new metrics remained “hazy” and ‘vague’”.

Improved workspace affects employees’ performance

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As a manager or a company owner, you want to increase the performance of your employees, right? So, one of the management tools you probably ignore is workspace. Yes, workspace plays a key role in the employee’s productivity, and that space if improved will have great effects on the employee’s performance and efficiency at work. So, if you want to increase your stuff’s performance, improving workspace is no longer a choice but a necessity. That’s what has been stressed by a new research published recently.

The study is carried by researcher Jennifer Abou Hamad at University Paris 1 Pantheon, Sorbone. It’s never the same if the workspace is highly improved or poorly set. According to the study published in a Journal of Organizational Management Studies, workspace is a manager tool and “it is important to reflect on office layout to improve the welfare and performance of employees and enable them to give their best effort.”

If the employee is given the flexibility to design his own workspace with his own stuff and not only occupy the place, it would make much difference. A poorly set workspace is just fostering negative energy into the employee’s psychology. Thus, if the employee doesn’t like what’s around him, his productivity will unintentionally decrease. When the employee develops his personal space, the latter “becomes a strategic tool as the employee feels more involved in company decision-making and experiences improvements in both motivation and the quality of life at work.

According to the researcher “employees must not only occupy the space but also adapt the space to their needs” the study stated. Hence, in order to get benefits and best of its employees “a company needs to rethink its workspace to make it more attractive” the study stressed. The researcher affirmed that “workspace functions to optimize working conditions, to protect and motivate employees, to enhance well-being and, in turn, individual performance.”

When you improve the welfare of employees at work including a perfect workspace and rich work environment, you’ll get benefits from the productivity rates that will significantly rise. As the study mentioned, the “work environment is designed as a managerial tool to achieve certain organizational goals.”

When the organizations make a perfect environment for work, they will reduce job stress that has “become a major risk that organizations must face” as it is “not only harmful to the employee but also posing serious consequences for the company.” The employee is an active vein in the company’s body, so if harmed it will affect the whole body in a way or another. According to the study “Poor workplace conditions become a source of pain that can cause psychosocial disorders”.