Think like Best Buy who’ve created Blue Shirt Nation, an online community in which employees share knowledge, information, best practices, frustrations, and hopes. httpss://mix.blueshirtnation.com/
Created by Steve Brendt and Gary Koelling – two advertising executives hired by Best Buy a few years ago – the community was meant as a research tool to tap into customer insight starting with company employees first. However, the users soon changed the community, turning it into a company-wide social network which generated thousands of conversations. The result was more information, more solutions, and more ideas. Seeing the success of this experiment, the company decided to support it in earnest. Brendt and Koelling traveled to 130 stores nationwide, interacting with employees and telling them about Blue Shirt Nation. Soon 20,000 of Best Buy’s employees had signed up. Today the community is still growing, and Best Buy is trying to extend its success at keeping employees loyal – while Best Buy’s overall turnover rate is 60%, among the Blue Shirt Nation community it is 8-12%.
An increasing number of companies are realizing that creating online social communities for their employees not only leads to greater dialogue and more understanding, but also translates into profits through greater employee satisfaction, increased efficiencies, and more ideas.