Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions
16 views | +0 today
Follow
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Taco Bell fends off claim that interns created the Doritos taco

Taco Bell fends off claim that interns created the Doritos taco | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
A pair of former interns say they came up with the concept in 1995—and even have old promotional materials to back it up. Taco Bell dismisses the claim as merely ‘an idea without execution.’
Kayla Myers's insight:

People all over the United States and the world love Taco Bell and when the fast food chain released their new line of Doritos Locos Tacos in 2012, it quickly became a big hype among Taco Bell fans. The Doritos Locos Tacos line features three different types of Doritos taco shells, nacho cheese, cool ranch and the newest addition, fiery and together, these three food items account for very large sales in Taco Bell terms.

 

According to this article found from prdaily.com, four ex-interns who used to work along with the fast food restaurant, are claiming the rights to the idea of the Doritos Locos Tacos. According to the ex-interns, the four came up with the idea for Doritos Locos Tacos approximately 20 years ago, and although they are not asking for money, they are asking for the credit they feel they deserve. This is not the first time that Taco Bell has dealt with a crisis such as this. Over the course of Taco Bell becoming a large staple in the fast food industry, people all over the country and quite possibly the world have claimed the rights to certain food items on their menu. For example, just last year Taco Bell was sued by a federal prisoner who claimed the idea for the Doritos Locos Tacos were created by him. He however did not have the documentation to prove it and did not succeed in suing the company. Today, the four ex-interns are claiming they had the same idea for the tacos, and unlike the gentleman who attempted to sue Taco Bell, they have the documentation and paper work to prove their case. 

 

The group of four has come forth and provided documents they created back in the year 1995 when they were involved in a competition to see who could come up with new and bright business ideas. The documentation included decals, flyers and also counter cards for their idea of "The All-New Dorito Tacos." Even with their evidence, Taco Bell is refusing to give the ex-interns any credit, a debate that continues even on Taco Bell's Facebook page. However, people are not buying it, stating that anyone, anywhere at anytime could say they came up with the idea. Getting the credit is just a bit more difficult to prove. Upon the ongoing issue, the brand’s director of public affairs and engagement had this to say regarding the ex-issue, "Good ideas can come from anywhere, but an idea without execution does not make a successful product. The concept of making a taco shell out of Doritos may have come to people’s minds, which is why we've had no shortage of those who have claimed it was their idea."

 

Even though the ex-interns don't work at Taco Bell anymore, I still consider their story a prime example of a case involving employee relations and what could be done to prevent instances like this from happening again. Although I feel like I can relate this case to Benoit and his Image Restoration strategies, I'm going to try my hand at relating this case specifically to codes of ethics. Found in the book "Adventures in Public Relations: Case Studies and Critical Thinking" created and written by David W. Guth and Charles Marsh, beginning on page 241, ethics are values, thoughts and beliefs that a company holds dear to their mission statement or even their own thoughts in the world. I feel that with this case in general, a sort of code of ethics was in fact broken by Taco Bell considering the fact that these ex-interns once worked for the company and they provided a substantial amount of evidence stating that they did in face have an idea to create the Doritos Locos Tacos. Now, whether or not they brought the idea up to the Taco Bell CEO is a whole different story, but overall I feel that the company should have given them some sort of recognition for their ideas, especially when they have immediate proof that they did have a similar idea coming from somewhere.


Other than ethics coming into play, I've decided that I am going to relate this case to Benoit. I feel that within the Image Restoration strategies, Taco Bell used the tactic of minimization by stating that people are always saying that they came up with a certain idea. By saying that tons of people want credit that they cannot prove, Taco Bell is trying to explain that the situation at hand is not as big of a deal as it appears. Like the spokesperson said, people all over the world try to do this all of the time, but you cannot receive proper recognition if you cannot provide proof or your idea was not done with execution. Overall, I feel that Taco Bell can do whatever it wants to, if it decides to offer recognition, then so be it. If not, well like the tactic of minimization states, they will continue to downplay the issue.

 

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Air Canada baggage handlers to be fired over video

Air Canada baggage handlers to be fired over video | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
One handler, part of a two-person team, was caught on camera dropping baggage from the top of a mobile staircase into luggage bins. The airline apologized for the ‘totally unacceptable behavior.’
Kayla Myers's insight:

Ouch! Talk about a poor life decision made by an employee! As the article says, another day, another airplane crisis being stirred up. The article said it perfectly “Sorry, Air Canada, this is a fail.” Social media crises are becoming a typical situation for airlines these days, but it leaves me asking, when are they ever going to catch a break?

 

The article above explains the situation a National airline went through quite recently when a passenger aboard the plane caught on camera what seems to be.....foul play before the plane took off the ground. The airline in question, Air Canada, has been thrown into crisis communication mode after the passenger on the airline watched as two baggage handlers dropped luggage into a luggage carrier from about 20 feet in the air. Not good Air Canada, not good. The passenger who filmed the two baggage handlers, Dwayne Stewart , posted the video on social media and not long afterwards, it went viral. As stated above, the video shows two Air Canada employees tossing luggage in a luggage bin from approximately 20 feet in the air. As seen in the video, the luggage fell hard and passengers cringed as they watched their items fall through the air. One passenger even joked, saying, "good thing my computer's in there!" as he watched his suitcase smack against the several others already in the bin. Upon the video making its rounds across the Web, it was eventually picked up by the airline. After viewing the clip, Air Canada immediately tweeted an apology in response, stating, "The actions in the video don't represent our procedure. We are disappointed & sorry about what happened. We're investigating."

 

Monday rolled around, and the video continued to go viral, reaching more than 1.6 million views across the Web. Deciding enough was enough,  and hoping the video hype would die down, Air Canada spokeswoman Angela Man spoke with The Huffington Post stating, "We apologize for the totally unacceptable mishandling of our passengers' baggage captured on video. The employees involved have been advised that their employment will be terminated pending the outcome of our investigation. We take matters involving the protection of our customers’ personal possessions very seriously. The actions of these individuals are not representative of the vast majority of our employees who work hard every day to take care of our customers." Needless to say, both employees in question were let go from the airline, but this action of firing stirred up its own can of worms.

 

As it turns out, the baggage handlers were part of a union, the baggage handlers’ union, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The union was outraged by the firings, and are now defending the actions of the baggage handlers, saying that it would have been too dangerous if the handlers would have brought the luggage down to the bin, so therefore, in the essence of safety, dropping the luggage was acceptable. A spokesperson from the union, Bill Trbovich, even explained that handlers are under an immense amount of pressure to hurry and get luggage on and off the plane in a quick manner. He believed that it would have been more dangerous for the employees to rush up and down the stairs. Whether or not the employees were in the wrong, or rather if they were just taking their own safety into consideration, a debate has risen on Air Canada's Facebook page about whether or not the employees should have been fired.

 

In my own personal view, I agree with the fact that the employees should have been fired. If I had seen baggage handlers tossing my luggage around, especially if it had expensive items in it, I would raise a demon. Within this story, I feel like there are so many things that could be tied to it. For example, after reading this story and hearing about the employees being fired, I instantly thought: Benoit, Image Restoration, corrective action and mortification. Even though I could go into huge detail about how corrective action was used during the firing of the employees and mortification was how the airline apologized, I think I'm going to focus on something different.

 

Another thing that came to my mind as I was reading this was ethics. Ethics, can be found in our book "Adventures in Public Relations: Case Studies and Critical Thinking" created and written by David W. Guth and Charles Marsh, starting on page 241 and running through page 248. According to the book, ethics are the values that guide the way we think and act and my belief about tying this to the story comes from the way the baggage handlers performed their job. I just feel like tossing luggage and throwing it around, no matter how so called 'dangerous' it is, is just so unethical to the people who own it and just so wrong! I feel that in addition to Benoit's Image Restoration strategies, such as mortification and corrective action, Air Canada should communicate with their employees on ethics and what is expected of them during the work day. I believe that if I worked as a manager at Air Canada, I would emphasize on the fact that what is expected of employees must be communicated and also understood so no further mishaps such as this happen again.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Applebee's CEO weighs in on PR crisis over receipt

Applebee's CEO weighs in on PR crisis over receipt | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
The company took a beating on social media after it fired a server who shared a customer's receipt online. 
Kayla Myers's insight:

Oh Applebee's, what do you think you are doing? As an eatery, it is important to keep good relationships with your staff, but what a local Applebee's in St. Louis did involving a member of their staff, leads you to wonder, why to some companies do what they do? Do they believe it is the right thing to do?

 

So for those who are not aware, an Applebee's located in St. Louis Missouri has been in the news lately for an incident that occurred quite recently involving a pastor, a waitress and a receipt. 

 

As the story goes, a group of churchgoers arrived at a local Applebee's after church. They were served their food, waited on and at the end of their meal, given a receipt. Typical Sunday meal right? Wrong.

 

The pastor, by the name of Alois Bell, left a very rude message on the receipt for the waitress to pick up. As the story goes, when you are in a group of eight people or more, gratuity plays a role and the tips are included in your total amount. Well along with gratuity, the receipt in question had a blank space for a further tip. Bell, so thoughtfully wrote this message: "I give God 10% why do you get 18."


Clearly, the waitress was upset, but what happened next was surprising. Another waiter or waitress took a picture of the rude message on the receipt and posted the picture to Reddit where it soon went viral. Immediately after the company discovered the picture, the employee was fired for not taking the customers privacy into account.


Well, soon afterwards another employee posted a picture of a very good receipt and tip that him or her received, however, this employee was not fired, they were praised being openly responded to positively by the Applebee's social media outlet.


The big topic up for debate now is whether or not the first employee should have been fired or not, and also the second thing being brought to attention is the fact that equality needs to be enforced when it comes to posting things on social media outlets.


As a PR student, it creates a knot in my stomach that one employee is fired because of something they posted, but another time it happened the person in question wasn't fired. With employee relations, it is important to have fair rules that apply to all situations, no matter what the details may be. It is unfair to fire someone and say it was because they posted something that was deemed as privite information, but the second time it happened, because it was a positive situation, they employee was not fired. Not very fair in my book.


Lastly, I believe that in this case, employee relations could have been better had their been a set of rules that were all clearly stated and understood. If a company has a policy set in place, but it is confusing, they need to deal with that accordingly so that no confusion occurs amongst their employees.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

P&G blocks employee access to Pandora, Netflix

P&G blocks employee access to Pandora, Netflix | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it

m, This week, Procter & Gamble announced it was blocking employee access to the movie and music streaming sites because of bandwidth use. Is it the first step on a slippery slope?

Kayla Myers's insight:

Netflix and Pandora are two extremely popular websites for everyone exposed to them, including employees. Owned by Procter & Gamble these two media outlets bring in tons of viewers each and every day. Netflix being a television show and movie viewing site, and Pandora being a free internet radio site, it is no wonder these two media outlets are known throughout the world. However, where there is success, there is always something to get in the way.

 

According to this article, Procter & Gamble are suspending usage of Netflix and Pandora to all of their 130,000 employees. Usually, this drastic action is unheard of in companies who rely so much on media, but what exactly is going on to make this company exclude its employees?

 

The story really takes off with the fact that the internet, as big and endless as it may seem, tends to slow up when many people are viewing the same thing all at one time. For example, I can remember back to a time when filing for my FAFSA and our computer at home was so slow. As it turns out, that day was the deadline to file for your FAFSA so literally everyone across the nation was on this site causing for a slow internet connection. The same concept applies for Netflix and Pandora. 

 

Procter & Gamble made the decision to suspend employee use of Netflix and Pandora after it was found that the usage was slowing down the sites across the nation. Many companies would deem this as unfair to employees, who usually are encouraged to visit and make use of these media websites. Even with this in mind the stopping of usage was never an issue with the employees.

 

In the article it explains that the company made the decision and immediately afterwards they informed the employees who were fine with the deal. They were comfortable in understanding that downloading and listening to music and movies was better done on their own time rather than in the workplace. Overall, the employee relations was successful, no issues were brought up and the decision was embraced with open arms.

 

This article explains a good example of employee relations in the workplace. It is a good thing to make sure your employees understand the corporate policy and rules and are following them. Similar to what the book states, it was a smart move for Procter & Gamble to communicate the plan to employees rather than just pulling the plug with no notice or explanation. Had they ignored direct communication with their workers, the company may have been facing harsher views from workers rather than the understanding response they received.

 

Overall, the banning of Netflix and Pandora to employees who work at Procter & Gamble went over well. There was no harsh views or aggressive action taken against the company, but it does cause people to wonder if this is the first step in the company banning other social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter. The future is uncertain but if that ends up being the case, keeping a good employee relations strategy can be the difference between good and bad views.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

How the Best Places to Work are Nailing Employee Engagement

How the Best Places to Work are Nailing Employee Engagement | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
Research shows four out of 10 workers are disengaged globally. In the U.S., the situation is worse. According to the latest State of the American Workplace Report, 70 percent of U.S. workers don’t like their job, creating an environment where many workers are emotionally disconnected from their workplace and less [...]
Kayla Myers's insight:

Nothing can kill the mood in a company like poor employee relations can. This has been true from the beginning of time and is as much about psychology and sociology as it is about good relationships within the workplace. Ever since the dawn of time it has been understood that the better someone feels the more likely they will spread the cheer that they themselves are feeling. In fact, we see this in our everyday lives. For example, take notice the next time you are walking down the street, if someone smiles at you, aren't you more likely to smile back? It is proven that if you smile as soon as you wake up in the morning you are more likely to keep this good attitude up all day long.  So wouldn't it make sense to carry this aspect with us to everything we are put through on an everyday basis?

 

This is where we can tie all of this back to employee relations in the workplace. This article sheds a little insight about the importance of good employee relations and also how to effectively contribute to increasing employee relations across the workplace environment. The fact is true that many employees are unhappy in the workplace but it is also certain that a good balance in employee relations can create a star company and also help maintain it.

 

The main discussion this article suggests is that engaging your employees, motivating them in another sense, is the key to good employee relations. How then do companies gain and maintain good employee relations? The following is what the article suggests.

 

Many ways can taken into view on how to promote good employee relations. One of these ways is to understand your employees on a deeper basis. As the book states, when employees feel like they matter to a company they are more apt to work harder. The same can be said from this article, surveys and discussion boards are a big factor in maintaining employee relations and according to the best places to work, the ability for employees to share thoughts and feelings can help to encourage them that management is listening to them, therefore caring about them and what they believe.

 

Support and appreciation are also key factors that can influence management and employee relations. Appreciation is a dead giveaway, if an employee feels that they are appreciated for what they do for a company, they are likely to work harder, enjoy their job and also encourage other people to work better as well. There is nothing better than meeting an employee who loves their job because usually employees are the first faces you see which can make or break a companies image. Other than appreciation, support is a huge factor of employee relations. If companies fail to support their employees, it can create a huge mess of problems. Who would want to work for a company that has no compassion for its workers? I know that for me appreciation and support are two huge things I look for when I am in the workplace, it really has the tendency to change the way you look at a company if you see them doing everything they can to help you not only as an employee but also as a human being.

 

The book ties all of this together perfectly. Good communication, appreciation and support that is shown via companies always has a likelihood of boosting employee morale. They always say that if you love your job, you never really work a day in your life, and I feel that companies who are noting the steps they need to take to have good employee relations, are the companies that are the most successful.

 

(Picture Credit: Photo Credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/43618504@N03/4442909681/">Frank Wuestefeld</a> via <a href="http://compfight.com">Compfight</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">cc</a>;)

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Kroger employee stops knife-wielding shoplifter, gets fired

Kroger employee stops knife-wielding shoplifter, gets fired | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
Online commenters have logged their displeasure with the firing of an Arlington, Texas, store manager. Kroger says he violated policy.
Kayla Myers's insight:

Usually, when a story comes along about a man who wrestled an armed thief to the ground, we applaud him and label him as a hero. Kroger has a different view. The popular grocery store has been the topic around social media outlets lately because of their response and action after an employee had a physical altercation with an armed thief in the parking lot of their store. As the story goes, the employee in question, a 13-year Kroger veteran, who also happens to be the store manager at Kroger followed an alleged thief out into the parking lot. The manager confronted the man and when he noticed the thief had a knife, the manager wrestled him to the ground. The entire incident was caught on camera from an onlooker who was in their car at the time. Yahoo news commented, "A customer in the parking lot of the Kroger recorded the incident on their cellphone. In the video, you can see the unnamed manager approach the shoplifting suspect. The suspect appears to have a knife in his hand. The manager shoves him into a parked car and gets the knife out the suspect’s hand before eventually slamming him down to the ground."  

 

After hearing about the manager who stopped a thief, many people applauded the man, saying he did the right thing and quite possibly prevented the armed thief from attacking anyone or any other store. However, even with all of the people applauding the manager's efforts, the Kroger surprised many by taking action on the case and firing the manager. Kroger issued this statement to a local Dallas news station, “The incident…is not a reflection of our company’s fraud prevention protocol, procedures or training…He is no longer employed by our company.” Customers and people alike were up in arms. Nearly 17,000 people commented on the firing on Yahoo's Story and several continue to comment across social media. Many believe that although his actions tested company policy, the manager should be lauded for his actions against the perpetrator. 

 

I myself, hold my own view on the situation. I feel like even though his actions of confronting the thief may have violated company policy, his actions alone were heroic and should be compensated for. I believe that firing the manager was taking this situation too far, and Kroger shouldn't have reacted so harshly towards the employee.

 

I believe the situation could have been avoided if Kroger communicated better with its employees. This always seems to be a problem. A company holds a policy, but over the course of the years, it gets thrown in the background, and many people either forget what the original policy states, or they never even hear the policy. I feel that better communication audit is needed to fix the situation between Kroger and its employees. Communication audit, as defined in the book "Adventures in Public Relations: Case Studies and Critical Thinking" created and written by David W. Guth and Charles Marsh, on page 36 within the Employee Relations section of our book, is how well an organization's communication is fulfilling company goals. In the case of this story, I think you can blame a sense of poor communication audit. I believe that the manger didn't even think about company policy, he just acted on a whim as any person would. Had the communication been better between the company and the manager, perhaps a middle ground could have been reached on the topic.

 

Another aspect of communication I can relate this case to is Benoit's strategies for Image Restoration. I feel that Kroger attempted the tactic of Corrective Action, where in this case, they removed the manager in hopes that they would not receive bad press. However, this tactic backfired and people are furious at the fact that the hero was wronged. If I was a PR consultant for Kroger, I would issue a statement of apology and cover the aspect of mortification, but I would also keep the manager hired. I would then make a statement explaining that although the company does not condone the actions performed by the manager, he felt the need to defend himself in the presence of an armed thief.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Ohio Walmart employees hold food drive for their co-workers

Ohio Walmart employees hold food drive for their co-workers | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
A group of Walmart associates advocating for higher pay posted an image to Facebook of a sign for the food drive. A Walmart spokesman said the drive is a positive.
Kayla Myers's insight:

It is not a surprise that Walmart is showing up yet again in the news for having problems involving their current and past employees. This time around, the situation is not how the employees are being treated, but rather instead, the problem is employee wages. As large as the Walmart Corporation is, the pay wage for employees can be very misleading. I myself have a story of my own to tell. My boyfriend, Dustin, works as a receiving associate for Walmart. He has been working there for a little over a year now but receives minimal pay for the work he does and the hours he spends there. Although he just received a pay raise for being there for over a year, his beginning pay was only $8.45 (a little over minimum wage) and now it has moved up to $9.45, many people are still very upset with the way Walmart pays its employees. As stated in this article, Walmart has never been submissive about the pay their employees receive. For example, Bill Simon, CEO of Walmart, even stated that "half of the company’s workers make less than $25,000 per year" which is a sad feat when realizing how large the Walmart corporation is and how many millions of dollars they receive annually.

 

Many people remain frustrated at the fact that Walmart is such a large franchise, yet it only provides its employees with the minimal allotted pay. For employees, this fact is extremely frustrating and unjust due to the fact that Walmart forces its employees to stay overtime and even work on Nationally proclaimed holidays such as Easter, Christmas and even Thanksgiving. Annoying? Believe me, I know.

 

That is where we can tie this in to the above article. The article, retrieved from prdaily.com, explains the struggle employees at a Ohio Walmart face regarding wages and working on National holidays. This story in particular follows the Ohio Walmart employees and the donation boxes that are developing so the employees can "enjoy Thanksgiving dinner." The food donation drive was created by a group of employees called OUR Walmart (Organization United for Respect), who desire higher wages within the corporation. Even though Walmart managers and spokespeople are claiming that they view this donation drive as an example of the company's culture and community, others remain angered, believing that Walmart's low pay seems to be a common topic among employees. Many people agree with this fact, stating online to Walmart, "Pay your workers what they deserve!"

 

Personally, I feel that Walmart desperately needs to change their overall image. In the case of their poor employee relations, I feel that they are in desperate need to hold some form of communication audit. The term communication audit can be found on page 36 from our book, "Adventures in Public Relations: Case Studies and Critical Thinking", and can be defined as a way to measure how well an organization communicates while also fulfilling their overall goal. In the case of poor communication between Walmart employees and Walmart managers and people of higher rank, improved communication audit techniques, I feel, could help boost the morale of employees and also bring Walmart out of a constant backlash.

 

The book, "Adventures in Public Relations: Case Studies and Critical Thinking" created and written by David W. Guth and Charles Marsh,  discusses face-to-face meetings as a tactic to improve communication audit, and I feel that adopting this technique could help Walmart hear the feelings and thoughts of their employees at a more efficient rate. I am a firm believer that the better the communication, the better the company and this could really help Walmart out. As for the low wages discussed in this article about food donation boxes, I feel that Walmart needs to develop a strategy where employees get paid their deserved amount. Whether it is developing holiday pay or even paying double for overtime, in order to get out of this situation Walmart needs to use those millions and pay their employees the amounts they deserve.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Arizona restaurant owners go ballistic on Facebook

Arizona restaurant owners go ballistic on Facebook | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
The owners of a restaurant that recently appeared on ‘Kitchen Nightmares’ responded to some online critics with an astonishing stream of invective. UPDATE: Owners claim their social media accounts were hacked.
Kayla Myers's insight:

Wow, what a nightmare. That is all I can say after hearing and researching further into this case study about Amy's bakery. The behavior of these owners is disgusting and not just because of the way they have responded and treated people on the web. Their bakery behaves with the lowest of the low, apparently stealing money and tips from their employees. What kind of business gets away with doing that? Definitely not this 'mom and pop' shop.

 

For those of you who may not know already, the supposedly struggling Amy's Bakery was set to appear on Kitchen Nightmare's with Chef Gordon Ramsay. The bakery, located in Scottsdale, Arizona has been under some serious fire lately. After Chef Ramsay announced that he would no longer work with the couple who owned the bakery (Samy and Amy Bouzaglo), the business reputation went from bad to worse.

 

Already, it seems that many unethical practices were taking place in this little family owned bakery. Recent research has shown that the Bouzaglo's had been stealing tips from their very own employees. That right there is an example of awful employee relations if I have ever seen it. How can a business, who relies on its employees to bring in customers and boost sales steal from their hard workers? A disgusting business, that's who.

 

Other details have been revealed that other unethical practices have been occurring at the bakery. As it turns out, the owners were buying food items from other places, repackaging them, and saying that they were homemade. Pitiful, just pitiful. 


Then the social media messages began, and man did those get ugly. So many people were bashing the small bakery, and rightfully so, it is completely unethical to do half of the things this bakery did.

 

Even though my topic of choice is about employee relations, which can be linked to this case study because of the fact that employees were completely mistreated, I'm going to start off talking about the bakery's social media battle and what they could have done differently.

 

Number one, don't feed the trolls! For the Bouzaglo's, it would have benefited them to just keep their mouths shut. The responses they were putting out on their social media outlets were honestly laughable, and any PR professional would agree that they were in the wrong to respond the way that they did.

 

Another mistake, saying that their social media accounts were hacked. Please. Amy's Bakery just shouldn't have said anything along that sort. The damage was done because they were not mature enough or informed enough to realize that you never respond in that harsh manner to people on social media. It just makes you look worse and worse.

 

Lastly, the employee relations perspective. Although this case mostly dealt with the fact that these people were responding so wrong, employee relations comes into play here. As a PR student, I feel so bad for those employees who worked for this company. The balance between boss and employee was obviously poor or even maybe non-existent. It is important to always have an employee relations plan into place, that way if someone is feeling mistreated, their voice can be heard and not ignored.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Company sues ex-employee for his Twitter account and followers

Company sues ex-employee for his Twitter account and followers | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
The lawsuit could determine who owns a Twitter account: a company or the employee who started it.
Kayla Myers's insight:

In the past year, the social media site known as Twitter has grown immensely all across the world. Companies all over the United States are realizing its grandeur and are beginning to promote themselves via this social media outlet. Within the social media world however, what you say and do can be a problem to a company's reputation or even your own reputation. Everyone always says, be careful what you put online because it cannot be erased, which is true, but also sometimes what you take with you via social media outlets can cause problems as well.

 

Not too often do you hear about problems arising from Twitter, the most recent being a story about compromised accounts which was later proved to be false, but this article explaining the story of an ex-employee being sued takes the cake.

 

Noah Kravitz, the ex-employee in question, worked for a company that you may or may not have heard of, PhoneDog. PhoneDog is a mobile phone cite and is currently underway of suing Kravitz due to the simplicity of a Twitter account. As the story goes, Kravitz had a substantial number of followers on the social media outlet, 17,000 followers to be exact. After choosing to leave the company from reasons unknown, Kravitz took his 17,000 Twitter followers with him, a feat that PhoneDog could not seem to accept. 

 

Surely, to anyone reading this story, it may seem a bit harsh on the company's end to sue a former employee, but this is where the story gets interesting. According to this article, Kravitz was not only just an employee, but he was also a writer for the company. While still employed at PhoneDog, Kravitz created a Twitter account named under the handle @Phonedog_Noah. After leaving the company, and taking all of this thousands of followers with him, it can be assumed that the company of PhoneDog was not receiving the desired clients they wanted. Therefore, they believed a sue was in order.

 

PhoneDog believed that anything, like an account, social media outlet or even mentioning of their name was entirely their property, therefore due to the fact that Kravitz had a Twitter handle named @PhoneDog_Noah, they wanted whatever followers and/or attention he was getting via the account to be directed or returned to them, the 'rightful' owners. With this goal being true, many people believe that Noah Kravitz will win the lawsuit against the company.

 

It is true that when a company creates something, they are entitled to own it and own everything associated with it, however different can be said when an employee creates something personal to themselves. In the case of Noah Kravitz, the ex-employee created the Twitter handle himself, therefore making the account his property and his followers his own and not property of PhoneDog.

 

I'm sure that lawsuits such as this happen all the time within companies, an employee creates something and the company thinks that they have the right to own it also. This is where employee relations comes in. As a company, it is important to understand that what an employee owns is theirs and their own. If a company sees one of their employees discussing a manner that is inconsistent with how they run their company, then they are completely liable to do whatever they want with the said employee. However, personal property is exactly what it claims to be, personal.

 

With the book in mind, I feel like this case could have been handled better if there had been more communication between the company managers and Kravitz. Face-to-face meetings with supervisors would have been best, I believe, for Kravitz in understanding the beliefs of the company and their social media outlets. The same can be said on behalf of PhoneDog. Had they had better employee relations, perhaps this case would never have happened, and who knows, this case could affect other employees working at PhoneDog as well. Seeing how this company views social media handles, and how they deal with employees and ex-employees, current workers could get a sour taste in their mouth. All in all, this is a prime example of how it is important to have your employee relations tactics under control.

 

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Kayla Myers
Scoop.it!

Walmart: Victim Of A Partisan National Labor Relations Board

Walmart: Victim Of A Partisan National Labor Relations Board | Employee Relations in Public Relations Professions | Scoop.it
The complaints do not bode well for American businesses.
Kayla Myers's insight:

Known for its vast array of easy to purchase items, Walmart Stores across America are readily available to the general public, and provide quick and easy access to goods for buyers in need. Although the success of the Walmart Corporation is profound, the company always tends to make its way back into the news spotlight one way or another. 

 

Even though this is clear when stated, it is not unusual for companies as large as the Walmart chain to deal with unprecedented challenges throughout their national and international campaigns. This article in particular discusses the issue of poor, or even one could say dwindling, employee relations that the company has dealt with on a more recent timeline. 

 

This story follows the issue of striking upon employees of the Walmart chain across America. For many years, Walmart has been thought to offer only low-paying, mediocre jobs to employees, but as of late, this is proven to be untrue. The newly elected CEO of Walmart has been working there ever since 1984, proving that low-paying jobs in the Walmart business do not have to remain, and it is quite possible, and almost certain that the longer you work for the company, the more pay you receive. 

 

A quick example of this that I know from my life come from my boyfriends experience working as a Walmart employee. For almost a year now Dustin has been employed with Walmart working as a receiving associate. As a receiving associate, Dustin works in the storage part of Walmart, unloading trucks, moving palates and constantly stocking shelves. Although the job description is not exactly luxurious, he does get added pay for every year he works. His pay raise goes up small amounts throughout the year, so for example he started out working and earning roughly $9 an hour and once he hits a year he will earn about $10.

 

Personally, I can see where these national Walmart employees are coming from, not really along the pay, but with the expectations of Walmart. From Dustin's experience, Walmart can be tough on their employees, making harsh instructions and having impossible expectations. However, with this being said and the article in mind, I feel that the employees at Walmart should discuss the issue with members of higher management before taking it upon themselves to begin striking.

 

I believe, from what the book says about employee relations, there is definitely a disconnect between these Walmart employees and the managers and CEO that works in higher levels of employment. From what this article explains, I believe that more communication needs to happen between members of higher management and everyday employees. One thing in particular that can be done to help the issue is set up and employee discussion board online, where employees can express their own opinions and these issues can be dealt with first hand rather than all of this anger building up causing a strike. Communication between employees and higher management can help to lessen the issue and lead Walmart on the road to better employee relations.

more...
No comment yet.