FIR Interview: Tansley Stearns and Patrick Rooney on employee social media training

QUE Social

While between 30 and 42 percent of companies (depending on which research you cite) still block employee access to social media, research increasingly suggests that training employees is more effective than trying to stop them engaging.

The Filene Research Institute – which conducts research for credit unions – wanted to offer training to credit union employees, and asked QUEsocial to modify their off-the-shelf product (one screen of which is pictured above) to address the specific needs of the credit union industry. The results: hard data that shows employees in the pilot group from 30-plus credit unions achieved meaningful results (like bring in new customers) as a direct result of the training.

In this interview with FIR co-host Shel Holtz, Filene’s Tansley Stearns and Que Social’s Patrick Rooney talk about the training program, the online approach (that includes a heavy dose of gamification) and how the pilot cohort was activated, along with the broader issue of training and employee access to social channels.

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About our Conversation Partners

Tansley StearnsTansley Stearns takes research and innovation by their tails, spins them into submission, and turns them into practical application for credit unions. As Impact Director with more than 14 years of credit union leadership experience across a variety of functional areas, she knows how to help an organization move ideas forward to drive business results. She has a passion for learning, creating, and executing.

In her previous roles at credit unions she was responsible for developing and implementing strategy and leading and driving business with all frontline teams including the call center, branches, lending, training, compliance, marketing & business development. Tansley has been a key member of the Guiding Coalition at two credit unions, helping to build and develop sales and service cultures. She also helped her credit union win first place in both the Dora Maxwell & Louise Herring awards.

Tansley was one of the original credit union professionals chosen to be a participant in the Filene Research Institute’s i3 program. In her three years with i3 she worked with other credit union executives to create two innovative projects including SmartScore, Decision Point and Debt in Focus.

Tansley earned her Bachelor of Arts dual degree in Psychology and English at the University of Michigan. She is a Credit Union Executive Society Certified Marketing Executive and Certified Senior Executive. She is an Alumni Emeritus of Michael Neill and Associates.

Connect with Tansley on Twitter: @Tansleys.

Patrick RooneyPatrick Rooney, founder and CEO of QUEsocial, is a recognized thought leader and innovator in integrated marketing and social media. He has been a frequent speaker about the trends and business applications of social media, and has been interviewed by the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, B2B Magazine, Chicago Tribune, and AdAge, among others.

Prior to creating QUEsocial, Patrick was co-founder and Executive Vice President of Zocalo Group, an award-winning word of mouth and social media marketing agency (part of Omnicom Group). Previously, Patrick was founder and president of Expand Communications, an influencer communications firm that focused on identifying and harnessing a brand’s most important advocates. Prior to that, he worked in public relations, with an emphasis in technology marketing, and held senior positions with Ketchum, Ogilvy PR and Cunningham Communication. His previous in-house leadership roles in marketing and communications helped shape his solutions-focused approach to delivering measurable and meaningful business results.

Patrick holds a BA in Political Science and an MBA from San Jose State University. He lives in Chicago with his wife and two incredible children.

Connect with Patrick on Twitter: @patrick1rooney.

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This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information:

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(Cross-posted from For Immediate Release, Shel’s and my podcast blog.)

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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