Mirabeau puts employees online
Mirabeau is not the first company to place its employees online. Dutch interactive advertising agencies Qi (click at ‘mensen’) and LostBoys (here) have places their people in a creative environment. And their might be more examples. It is completely logical for the interactive industry to be the first to do this. These people after all can already be found through LinkedIn for example, so why not in a creative environment in which they look good?
Placing employees online is part of a process I call the brand coming out. In this process, traditionally closed companies transform into open networks of employees, partners, and customers. Terms like co-creation and authenticity are also part of this (internal and external) process of change. The result is that brands start uniting people instead of products. People will feel involved with the brand to a greater or lesser extent, be they (ex) employee, (ex) customer, or have a different relationship to the brand. By asking people explicitly to show their involvement in public, the emotional ties to the brand will just get stronger. This psychological effect has also been described Robert Cialdini’s fantastic book Influence. These pioneers seem to be right not to worry about headhunters. Brands that radiate self-confidence will become more and more attractive.
I expect this process to continue in the years to come. All companies will place their employees online. Be it a travel organization, a sports shoes manufacturer, a medicine manufacturer, a do-it-yourself company, or a telecoms operator. In the long term, only those organizations that have reason to be concerned about the safety of their employees, like investigators, family therapists, or soldiers, will refrain from this. They might choose to have their employees work under pseudonyms. Other brands will continue to get more transparent, and even openly share their internal projects, finances, and strategical considerations with the world. But this will take at least another ten years. First we will see more employees online.
Do you know more examples of companies already being open about formerly ‘internal business’? Maybe in other sectors? Or in other countries? E-mail me!