Time has been “wasted” at work since work began. Whether it’s the watercooler, solitaire or YouTube, few people go to work and put in 8 “productive” hours. Setting aside the various argument against a day without downtime, let’s examine what happens when people “waste” time on Social Media.
Social Media is–in many ways–what it sounds like…SOCIAL. If we think about the nature of business, what is it really? It’s people exchanging money, experiences and services with other people. This requires, above all else, PEOPLE. So while Solitaire, everyone’s favorite time waster (circa 1990-1999), is a “lonely man’s game,” Social Media allows for new relationships to form, new content to be discovered and new solutions to be found. Simply by being visible online, your people help to build your brand. Will people waste time on Social Media? Undoubtedly. Seriously, there’s no question that will happen.
But ask yourself this, what’s more likely?
Will people waste more time browsing Facebook on their phones without your permission and sneaking off to tweet or watch a YouTube video on a tablet? Or Will they waste more time if you draw clear lines in the sand about how to proactively use these networks as a way to fulfill their job functions in a responsible and focused way?
I think you know the answer
You cannot stop people from wasting time. Your people are already using Social Media, trust us. Your customers are already using Social Media, again, trust us. Instead of sticking your head in the sand, take control of the situation. Heck, you may even discover that the tool you thought would be a big waste of time, helped your business survive the next 10 years as the world changed around you.