What Is Social Networking in Management? - Definition, Impact & Advantages

Instructor: Donna Swarthout
Social networking has transformed business operations in the 21st century. Learn about the impact and advantages of social networking in business management, and take a quiz to test your knowledge.

Definition

Most of us are familiar with social networking sites that allow people to share information, interests, activities, photos, and much more with other people in their network. You may use a social network platform to interact with your friends, family, professors, or business colleagues. Social networking has already transformed the business world, making it easier for managers, job seekers, small businesses, entrepreneurs, and others to establish and maintain beneficial connections. These sites offer an attractive alternative to the slower, more formal communication channels of the past.

We have all seen how businesses now market and advertise their products through sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Managers also use social networking sites to efficiently communicate with individuals inside and outside their organization. One of the most commonly used social networking sites in the business world is LinkedIn. In use for the past ten years, LinkedIn allows professionals to network with each other and currently has more than 200 million users around the world. Many job seekers find LinkedIn to be a valuable tool in their employment searches. Google+ is another popular business networking site, and there are many more specialized sites, such as PartnerUp for business entrepreneurs.

Impacts of Social Networking

Social networking technology has far-reaching impacts and advantages for management. Let's look at a list of some of the impacts first. Social networking…

  • transforms the way information is shared
  • opens up the internal and external communication process
  • changes the way business and customer relationships are cultivated
  • expands opportunities for team formation and collaborative communities
  • simplifies the hiring and new employee orientation process
  • allows managers to identify organizational resources and expertise
  • facilitates managerial oversight

Since there are now so many social networking sites, businesses need to devote resources to choosing the right platform for their needs and identifying how to take full advantage of the available features. Some social networking sites may be more suited to marketing, while others may be a better option for fostering teamwork and online collaboration.

Businesses have many reasons to jump on the social networking bandwagon.
social networking bandwagon

Advantages of Social Networking

Now let's consider some of the benefits of social networking in business management. These include:

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