The Groundswell Inside Your Company

All my blog posts so far have looked into how an organization can connect with its customers more effectively. Chapter 12  in Groundswell specifically looks at how employees within an organization can connect with the groundswell. In Chapter 4 we looked at the POST process. Within the Objective section included listening, talking, energizing, supporting, and embracing. These 5 objective also apply within the organization. “Management’s relationship with employees – and employees relationship with each other is multidimensional” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 237).

Here’s a breakdown on how the objectives apply to employees:

  1. Listening – Taking your employees’ opinions into consideration and coming up with new ideas to implement within the organization together. “With employees, listening can turn rapidly into problem solving” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 237).
  2. Talking – Employees spreading message about their company to customers and others.
  3. Energizing – This relates to my previous blog post. A successful organization gives its employees a “platform…to amplify [their] voice…spreading positive thinking and advice” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 237).
  4. Supporting – Understanding the needs and wants of your employees.
  5. Embracing – “Integrate your [employees] into the way your business works, including using their help to design your products” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 69)

In our textbook, an employee describes how connecting with the groundswell at work makes her feel empowered. She describes that “it feels like I’m making a difference. It makes me feel better at work, and I have a greater sense of responsibility to not just point out what’s wrong but to come up with ways to fix things that are wrong. That’s because what I’m saying could impact what someone thinks who just started a few days ago” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 234).


Source: Best Buy logo. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

This chapter also looks into Best Buy. Corporate marketing employees, Steve Bendt and Gary Koelling wanted to gain more insight into what their customers thought about Best Buy and find out ways to improve their customer’s experience (Li & Bernoff, 2011). They wanted to integrate their employees into this new project. Employees that dealt with customers all day would know their opinions the best. Consequently, Blue Shirt Nation (an online interactive community platform) developed as a result to this decision. “Steve and Gary went on the road, participating in “chalk talks” in the stores and giving away Blue Shirt Nation T-shirts to employees. They took store teams bowling, getting feedback on what worked on the community and encouraging employees to participate” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 235). “Blue Shirt Nation was created to listen to what employees had to say. What Best Buy didn’t anticipate is that it would not only educate management but also enable employees to help each other” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 236).


Source: Best Buy employees. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

Here’s how Best Buy’s collaborative platform looks like:


Source: Blue Shirt Nation (BSN). (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

Chapter 12 also mentions Intel’s creation of Intelpedia. “In the fall of 2006, Intel product support engineer John G. Miner wrote a blog post on his internal blog, asking, “Wouldn’t it be cool to have something lie Wikipedia inside of Intel?” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 241).  This led to the creation of the company’s internal blog, Intelpedia. “It contained twenty thousand articles and generated seven hundred page views every month” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 241). Intelpedia became a great resource for Intel employees to learn and collaborate with one another.


Source: Wiki. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

At my current workplace (Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation), managers always are trying to improve workplace efficiency and they ask all the employees for their ideas as well. For example, when the Foundation was seeking ways to increase the amount of donations, managers asked those that actually spoke with potential donors how they can improve the process. They take our ideas into consideration when coming up with future campaigns and fundraisers. An idea included inviting individuals to the hospital to get a better sense of what the hospital stands for. Most of the collaboration we do at my workplace is done in person with meetings or via email. This is because it’s a small-sized workplace and these are cost-efficient methods. When managers include you in the decision making process you feel like you have a bigger role at the workplace, and you get to showcase your potential. Managers are always giving out words of encouragement to all employees, especially when there is a job well done. In addition, as a team once a month we go out and celebrate small successes (such as bowling, going to a restaurant, PaintNite, etc.). This is another great technique to empower your employees by making them feel appreciated for the work that they put in.

This will be my last blog post relating to Groundswell. I hope to write more blog more in the future about various other topics. Thanks for joining me this semester.




Best Buy employees. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

Best Buy logo. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

Blue Shirt Nation (BSN). (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from

Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell – Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Harvard Business Review Press: Boston

Wiki. (n.d.). [IMAGE]. Retrieved from


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