Our Social Media Guidelines
Social media is an indispensable ingredient of daily life for many people today. Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Xing and LinkedIn are some of the established platforms via which we exchange thoughts, opinions and experiences with others. Irrespective of time or place, and with people from both our private or professional environments.
Employees of TALKE who discuss their company also influence the image the public has of it by doing so, regardless of whether they do this as private individuals or members of the TALKE staff. We therefore request you to take note of the following points in this context on all occasions and especially on social media:
- Make it clear you are speaking for yourself. TALKE is reported on and spoken about in many places – also on social media. As a TALKE employee, you will not always agree with what you read. Perhaps because you have a much more comprehensive view of the circumstances, or because what is presented is simply factually incorrect. Whatever it is: if you respond and express an opinion, point out that you are doing so from a personal angle. Avoid creating the impression that your contribution is an official statement from TALKE.
- Be true to yourself. Trust and credibility are the cornerstones of social networks. Do not disguise yourself, but show who you are and what you are like. Open communication on the web also includes revealing your background. If you are actively supporting TALKE on the internet or representing TALKE’s interests, stand behind your viewpoint! You can, for example, ensure transparency by a note at the end of your contribution to a discussion. For instance by adding the statement: “I’m an employee of TALKE and am expressing my personal opinion here.”
- Be honest. Statements quickly become wide-spread on social media. But they can be checked equally quickly. Fibs and lies are soon exposed. And once they have been put out into the world, they cannot be retracted, because they are retained and cannot be erased for a long time. So be sure your statements are truthful. Do not falsify anything or consciously omit, add or distort information. Name your sources – in doing so you show respect to the author and gain credibility.
- Remain polite. Show the person you address respect, even if you are annoyed. Do not provoke or insult anybody. If someone insults you, end the discussion.
- Correct any mistakes you make. A person who can admit they make mistakes is seen positively, above all when they correct their mistakes promptly and understandably. This helps to prevent misunderstandings or irritation.
- Always remain professional. Work and private spheres cannot always be separated – especially not on social networks. That also applies for contacts from these two worlds. Before you express an opinion online, please think of the following: a simple search and linking of the results allow conclusions to be drawn about personal relationships, professional responsibilities or opinions about certain topics.
- Separate facts from opinions. To avoid misunderstanding, you should make it clear which of your statements are based on facts and which are opinions. You should also show clearly whether you are representing your personal opinion or that of the company.
- Treat confidential matters confidentially. In a dialogue with colleagues, the platform on which an exchange is taking place is quickly forgotten. That can have undesired consequences – in particular when internal matters are concerned. So, do not reveal any confidential information from the company on social media. Do not issue any statements regarding offers, customers or contracts. Do not publish anything about third parties before you have agreed on this with the persons concerned. If you are uncertain whether you are entitled to publish some particular information, ask your line manager, the Data Protection Officer or the Corporate Communication department. If in doubt, do not publish it.
- Observe the law. Publish no content which is calumnious, insulting or unlawful in any way. Place no content on the network without a corresponding reference to the author. Observe copyrights and respect the right of others to their own image. Your employment contract, the data privacy guideline, the written instructions and the Code of Conduct provide a binding framework for complying with applicable legal regulations in your own interest and in the interest of the TALKE Group. This applies in particular to handling confidential company and personrelated information and any behaviour which can expose you to a conflict of interests.