This post is by David Spark, who was at the ICIS Conference in St. Louis reporting for Dice News.
Your employees are walking around with an amazing volume of information. If you give them the opportunity to blog, then that information is recorded and shared, allowing others to learn from them. But is everything employees blog about valuable for your organization? Should you allow your employees to blog about anything?
In the research paper “Show Me the Incentives: A Dynamic Structural Model of Employee Blogging Behavior,” Yan Huang and Param Vir Singh of Carnegie Mellon University and Anindya Ghose of NYU discovered that placing restrictions on what employees can blog about is actually detrimental to the value of corporate blogging.
The research team looked at companies that allowed both leisurely and work-related blogging, plus those companies that disallowed leisurely blogging.
They found that when organizations put restrictions on leisurely blogging, it negatively affected the writing and sharing of work-related blog posts. As for the organizations that did allow leisurely blogging, the research team didn’t see any evidence of the “off-topic” posts affecting productivity.
Huang rationalized leisurely blogging as being a virtual way to network with other people. You can attract people to your blog with an entertaining post. That gets fellow staffers to your blog. And because the work-related posts are on the same page as the entertaining post, there’s spillover with people reading the work-related articles.
There are multiple benefits to corporate blogging. It reduces the cost of internal communications, it inspires innovation, and it facilitates knowledge and idea sharing.