Reporter's Notebook

Mulling over social media?

Expert offers execs a hairstyle metaphor

Jessica Miller-Merrell, chief executive, Xceptional HR

Why should restaurant executives jump into the Twitter stream?

Jessica Miller-Merrell, chief executive at Xceptional HR and widely known tweeter @blogging4jobs, said executives can and should use Twitter to communicate with both customers and employees.

At her workshop on Nov. 1, “Blogging & Tweeting From the Corner Office: Social Media for Executives,” at the People Report/Black Box Intelligence Best Practices Conference in Dallas, Miller-Merrell said executives can use Twitter as a tool to communicate with employees and provide from-the-top information, instead of “smoke-break rumors.”

RELATED: People Report: Best Practices winners share HR tips

Executives on Twitter and in blogs can also humanize management, she said, by providing a glimpse into their personal interests, along with corporate messages.

Miller-Merrell used the mullet — a popular late-1980s hairstyle (think “Achy-Breaky Heart” singer and Miley Cyrus' dad Billy Ray Cyrus) — as a metaphor to explain how executives can mix public with a little private information. A "social-media mullet" can let companies offer a “business-up-front-party-in-the-back” communication style.

Contact Ron Ruggless at ronald.ruggless@penton.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @RonRuggless

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