Liveblogging the Internal Training session at BlogOrlando. How to keep internal staff up to date on latest technologies and what not via Internal Training. Phil Gomes does that at Edelman as senior vice president of digital integration.
Enjoying Phil's story of how it got into this position by tracking online chatrooms, newsgroups, etc for tracking logs at a PR agency. Some of the stories involve difficulty of getting others to accept social media. Finally, landed at Edelman in 2005. Edelman's CEO blogs and it helps with the person at the top gets it (so make sure you educate them, get them involved - my point).
Phil recommends starting your education of your superiors with context. What is the history of bbs, internet, social media and how it applies to today. (Some online videos may help.)
Phil says Success has a 'long tail'. By which he means ignore the big stories and focus on the long tail success examples. Example that you can no longer seperate the nerds, the digitalness, from your day to day operations. It must be integrated into every level.
The Rick Murray rule: No matter how hard you try, no matter the size of your organization, someone is screwing up. ie, uyu can't avoid failure, you can only get up dust yourself off, learn from it, and move on. This is true for training up. You won't always be successful.
There is a lot of debate in organizations over who owns social media. Is it marketing, PR, IT, etc. Phil believes that Public Relations is the discipline. As social media lets us put the public back into public relations.
Phil's secret: Don't call it training. "Would you rather your kids go to sex education or sex training?" An immortal quote to be sure. Everything should rise to the level of education.
Has a lab set up where users come in and actually use the technology. Set up and use delicious, blogs, flickr, twitter, etc. Make sure students are treated as subject matter experts. You're here to provide tools. Let them know that on the internet things can get 'R' rated very quickly, so don't linger, but don't be surprised. Remind them this is a lab and it's for experimenting.
Exercise: Nature's Oven Bread Company
You're Nature's Oven and you have two types of bread "Whole Grain" and "Diet Bread". A Very well known food blogger posts, "OMG WTF Nature's Oven is a ripoff. I was just at whole foods. There are two different breads, but they're just the same (ingredients, size, etc) except the diet one is sliced more thinnly." And it spins out of control. It's the next Kryptonite Lock.
So the challenge of the exercise is what is your response? Response must be less than 125 words, link to an outside credible source, must be conversational and must meet PR ethic standards.
How would you respond?
Phil G, Recommended book Competitive communication: Classical rhetoric for modern business (College custom series) (Eckhouse)