Dave Carlick was one of my early career mentors, and there were two things I learned from him that will stick with me forever. First, there’s nothing that can’t be improved by a glass of red wine, and second, assume good intentions. Assume good intentions helps you to have empathy for another’s point of view, it often gets you to figure out ways to work better together, and it sometimes shames someone who really isn’t acting with good intentions to clean up their act. Of course, occasionally someone is just a jerk, and that’s where the red wine can come in. Assume good intentions is a really useful bit of career advice, in fact, it’s one of the best pieces of life advice I’ve ever been given. And I, in turn, give it away myself all the time.
So along the lines of giving away good advice, Antics just launched a new microsite for SAP called Advice Bytes. Advice Bytes gathers career advice from real SAP employees from around the world that you can explore by themes and then share with others. It’s a great addition to the SAP Careers website because it gives you an authentic little snapshot of some of the people who work at SAP, but I really like this piece because it leverages personal stories that are thought provoking. The stories might give you a new tip, or get you thinking about the career advice you’ve been given over the years, or start you wondering what friends might say if you asked them what their best career advice was. It gives you a reason to start a conversation across your own social networks.
Many companies focus on creating “shareable” content, but I think one of the best ways to determine whether something will be share-worthy is to ask if it is conversation-worthy. Blogs are certainly places where conversations can start, but blogs are usually reserved for a few thought leaders with the stamina to develop on-going, in-depth content. By “crowd-sourcing” tidbits of content from a wide range of employees you make it easier for lots of people to contribute to the content creation process and you can aggregate those small bites into something compelling. Plus, you create more content owners who might take some pride in sharing their contributions and getting your word out to more people.
So when looking for ways to generate interesting, share-able content don’t overlook the opportunity to survey your employees (or your customers, partners, followers, site visitors, app users, etc.) and get them to tell you what they think about a topic that might be meaningful to them. What’s their biggest fear, their best time-saving tip, their favorite productivity app, their worst career mistake, or even the best place for a glass of red wine? Listening to others is often the very best way to start a conversation.