Why you can’t live without employer branding

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Imagine this situation: You are recruiting new personnel for your company and you want to make sure you get the best talent but… (There is always a but). How do you make sure the candidates you want will choose you above the competition?
Can you tell your company is the best place to work at?

Take into account that a candidate chooses the option that brings the feeling of being listened and involved in the decision making process, the one that offers a great and comfortable working environment and opportunities of learning and growth. So the best way to make sure your company stands out of the competition, is by evaluating your employer branding.

Employer branding is the capacity of an enterprise to attract and maintain current and future talent by projecting an image of a great place to work, where employees will be able to develop skills and grow professionally. In simple words it’s the enterprise’s reputation, the perception that society and employees have about it and how appealing it is to potential workers.

Now, you are aware that you might not be the only one offering a job, but if you have a good employer branding, this shouldn’t be a concern. You know that the image your enterprise projects to the outside is solid, it is seen as a Great Place to Work which offers a lot to its employees and rewards them for their efforts. And that is your differentiation against the competition. Now let’s see what a good employer branding looks like.

1. Internal: there must be a strong internal communication that allows ideas and opinions exchange within ALL the areas, having this in mind:

  • Employee treatment, good labor conditions to keep employees
    happy.
  • Involve all areas of the enterprise in the decision making processes. Tools like Kuorum can help you to do that while managing expectations and producing simple analytics about your employees’ engagement.
  • Be aware of your employee’s opinions and feelings by softening hierarchical structures.
  • Employees committed and aligned with the enterprise’s goals and values.
  • Make employees feel proud of being part of the company.
  • Foster teamwork.

2. External: The enterprise must have a good reputation and perception from the society and workers, its message must be clear to be easily identified, involving:

  • A value proposition attractive to the people you want to work with
  • Good positioning, highlighting what makes the enterprise different
  • Create a solid, clear corporate culture easily perceived by society
  • Social networks, huge tool to share enterprise’s values and transparency to the outside, also a way employees attract new talents by sharing their experiences.

In the end, a company with a higher employer branding is able to reflect its value proposition in all its areas and all its employees through strong ties among the company and its members.

Myths and lies about online political campaigns

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Let me get this straight: Online political campaigning is not the misterious witchcraft some [self-appointed] gurus proclaim. Digital advocacy is just as unsexy as any other communication science. Nonetheless, it is still interesting enough for Hillary Clinton to spend $500k in it. And similar customs apply on the other side of the puddle, with Spain’s acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy investing some €300k in Facebook Ads and David Cameron squandering £400k to conquer Downing Street a bit more than one year ago (OMG Dave, that was fast!).

But what’s the truth behind the scenes? For a campaign manager worth his salt online tools are just a fancy complement. They are as essential as accesory, and should be understood in the context of a broader picture. Every political campaign has three main goals: Gaining volunteers, donors and voters. And in order to reach that aim one needs to follow four major steps:

  • ANALYTICS: Analyze the context, identify your target audience, define a message and choose the best channels to reach that sector of the population.
  • OUTREAH: Disseminate your message through the chosen channels.
  • LEADS: Identify and get in touch with the most engaged individuals of your target audience.
  • ENGAGEMENT: Establish a relationship of trust with those influencers before converting them into your brand new broadcasters.

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Online analytics begins to play a role in public opinion research, mainly due to the decreasing penetration of landline – the technology traditionally used by polling companies. But the penetration of internet and social networks is neither significant enough to come up with solid results. And that situation has set the whole sector on fire, with an open war between advocates and detractors of big data as a source of information. Online analytics is thus not the step where politicians are spending a big part of their budgets. At least not yet, not until it reaches the state-of-the-art. Although some options like Blurrt begin to stand out.

Facebook Ads and Google Adwords are, on the contrary, mature technologies that allow for political parties to reach their target audiences at a reasonable price. The outreach process has been completely disrupted by these companies. We can now have real time feedback about the progress of our campaing. And there is far more room to manouver on our initial strategy. A/B testing is used to identify the most effective messages and the cheapest ways to spread them. But what happens next?

Once our message is out, we shouldn’t step back and behold our community managers celebrating Facebook likes with champagne. Because Facebook likes are not votes. And therefore you’ll see every candidate builds its own website. Those websites are what I like to call “lead generators”. A simple template with input boxes for supporters to leave their emails and zip codes. Some are chicer than other. But in the end they all have the same purpose, getting in touch with potential broadcasters who will reduce the cost of your outreach and increase the efficiency of your campaign.

Finally, any campaign manager needs a tool to put some order into their mailing lists. Years ago rallies and post mail where the only ways to engage with affiliated members and party supporters. But today email segmentation enables us to communicate more effectively with our broadcasters. By knowing who is opening and clicking in which emails, we’ll be able to profile our contacts and talk to the right people about the right issues and at the right time. That’s the whole secret behind the successful campaigns of Obama but also the same strategy used by the Strongerin Campaign at the Brexit Referendum – although no guru will claim autorship to that because failure is not sexy.

Long story short, internet hasn’t changed the way political campaigning works. It has only opened new ways to carry out the same old tasks more effectively. So when deciding on which online tools to use for an advocacy campaign, campaign managers should repeatedly ask themselves the same question: Is this tool going to help me gain more votes, volunteers and donors at a lower cost? This is what we had in mind when we developed the premium features of Kuorum. And there are also plenty of other wonderful resources that might fit your campaign better depending on your budget and goals. You can find some of them in the graph below. But please, don’t let any guru fool you with a load of digital mumbo jumbo. They are just as lost as anyone of us.

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How to Talk Politics

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As seen in recent controversies and events that have unfolded in 2016, it is crucial now than ever to have political conversations. Improving political conversations can be the key to turning passive citizens into proactive, politically aware citizens. If we talked about running parties, issues affecting our nations, policies being put into place – we would be able to make better, informed decisions. And therefore a satisfying political landscape would emerge.

So we must ask the question: Why is it becoming increasingly uncomfortable to express our own beliefs?

In a recent article by BBC News, journalist Zaria Gorvett mentions that individuals “[see] things through the prism of their ideology, ethnicity or social class”. Thus, tension ensues when people with contrasting cultures discuss their ideologies, their ethnicity or any subjective issue. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to politics, and people don’t like that. However, it doesn’t mean it should be a topic that is avoided.

Here are our golden rules for having a rewarding political discussion:


Stay Calm
You probably well know before you have this conversation, that it isn’t going to be smooth sailing. Everyone has an opinion and they’re going to be different. Take deep breaths, go to your happy place, keep your zen, do what it takes to not get riled up.

Stay Informed
The best way to articulately state your beliefs is to always know the facts. Stay informed about the political issues and parties you rally for.

Stay Respectful
Everyone has a right to their own opinion; stay grounded when you have these conversations. Don’t get so easily offended or to retaliate at every disagreement. Resist from saying ‘No’ or any other negative response. Opt for ‘I understand’ or ‘I see your perspective’.

Note the similarities/common ground
In these types of discussions, we tend to focus on the negative. We should also point out the common beliefs we share. Most of the negativity surrounding political conversations nowadays is because of the conflict of opinion. So find the upside, by outlining the political ideas you share in common to make political discussions enjoyable and efficient.
An example of this is by discussing political issues in your area rather than political figures or parties. Again, this is achieved by staying informed!

It’s a conversation, not an argument
It’s easy for a simple chat to spiral downwards into a debate about whose right or wrong. In the world of politics, there’s no black and white, no good or bad party. Always remember that this is a forum, it’s a chance to present our side of things, not rebut the point of views we don’t agree with.

Don’t swerve the conversation
Just as important as not arguing, is to not change the topic once the atmosphere gets heated. You’ve reached a tense point, find out the root reason of why an individual has this opinion, what’s the point of this conversation? Don’t just stop when you’ve only scratched the surface, dig deeper. That person will appreciate you wanting to know more about their side, than just changing the topic to something more agreeable.

Research
What is also just as important as having a political conversation, is remembering what was talked about. Research about points that were made by friends or family and observe what aspects of the conversation interested you the most. Investigate it, just make sure to check the sources of your information! The internet is filled with biased, sponsored sources.

A social change needs to happen in regards to talking about good ol’ pol. And this starts with us.
Make political discussions an everyday, essential part of our social activity. If we can become more comfortable with politics and discard the “taboo” attitude surrounding it, the better we can collectively influence how politics is shaping our lifestyles and the world around us.

Kuorum’s Sales Strategist: Jiaxi Huang

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Jixi Huang is the MVP when it comes to Kuorum’s sales and business strategy. You could say she’s the fortune-teller of Kuorum, advising us what moves to make and what paths we should steer clear from. We hope it’s all-good omens ahead!

I’m from China and I study in the University of Manchester. I did Finance and Economics in my Bachelor’s degree and now I’m studying Business Analysis. I’m helping Kuorum with the sales plan for its first sellable product. This will also be the topic of my dissertation of my degree.‘ Jiaxi is both a sale professional and a professional for cracking jokes and easing the sometimes-stressed headquarters in Madrid.

In the Madrid offices, Kuorum is surrounded by several other startups. One level in the Telefonica building that is the workspace of 20+ companies. Jiaxi loves the creative energy in the workplace.

It’s a very collaborative working environment. The office is trying to make it more collaborative because there are no walls between us. It’s a more relaxed environment to work that helps people collaborate.

I think this workplace helps to work quicker and be more efficient… I worked in a big company before as an intern, and it feels bureaucratic. Everybody was distant so you’re actually afraid to ask questions and you hesitate about interrupting somebody, but here we have a good working environment, it actually makes me work faster.

It’s a good thing Jiaxi is inspired to work faster here, because with our small team, each member has an important role with a hefty number of responsibilities to oversee. You know that quote “Work hard, play hard”? Kuorum can testify to this.

I do the product benchmarking which basically analyses the market…What existing products are on the market and its features, advantages and disadvantages…and I also identify the target group that will buy the product.‘ Taking a moment to think, she adds ‘Which are the best channels to sell, the high efficiency channels, the cheaper channels and the ones that will acquire the most customers.

We don’t know how she does it, but we’re glad she completes everything! Jiaxi also credits the team atmosphere in aiding her productivity.

Everybody here is working so well with each other and we go out to have lunch sometimes, to know each other more and collaborate better, to solve problems and to talk about issues in work…To basically have no issues with talking to anybody. It helps a lot with my work because I can talk to Matias, Iñaki and everybody basically to get the information I need.

The team makes an effort for everyone to understand each other’s work. And being able to observe the other functions of Kuorum, has enhanced Jiaxi’s knowledge of her own specialization.

Thinking from different positions has been adding more things into my work that makes the strategy better.‘ Being handed the role of devising the sales plan strategy is a big task, but a task Jiaxi enjoys tackling.

For Kuorum the sales strategy that I’m doing is what they will actually use this summer…I feel responsible for it …I feel like I’m contributing, I’m important for the company, it makes me feel really good.

Jiaxi has an unquestionably impressive skillset, an easygoing personality, but she does admit she wasn’t so detail-oriented before coming to Kuorum.

I’m not the kind of person that plans in details but actually our management team surprised me by getting so planned and organized and everybody has their weekly goals. It helps people to increase everybody’s efficiency every week with goals that are clear and in detail. I think this is a good way to work, so in my future work I will start setting future goals as well.

Kuorum has proven to be a mine of opportunity and experience for Jiaxi’s career, a learning curve and a space to present her expertise.

I want to get experience on real things, not just a summer intern for a few months doing nothing, getting real things done and getting work experience, it will help me to be smoother on my future job…

Kuorum is working onward and upward to achieve our aspirations, and at the same time, we try to enrich our employees’ time by giving them the experience they need to reach their goals too. We’re all about empowering and encouraging at Kuorum!

View Jiaxi Huang’s LinkedIn here.

A Kuorum Victory!

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The Kuorum team is in celebratory mode as we have just received the Best Technology of the Year Applied to Politics Award at the Victory Awards in Washington DC last week.

This is a feat achieved by our hardworking team and the Kuorum community! We would not be able to have gained the recognition and opportunities offered to us if it weren’t for you supporting our mission and vision.

Our CEO Matias Nso was there to accept the award on behalf of the company.

Read the transcript of his acceptance speech down below:
“We want to dedicate this award to the fool ones. Three years ago, when my partners and I decided to abandon our engineering careers working for big multinational companies to develop tech for politics, many said we were fools. Good thing about fool people is they never walk alone, so more fools joined us: Renowned political consultants like María de Reparaz or Imma Aguilar, universities like Harvard or the London School of Economics, transparency organizations like MySociety… And together we built the world’s largest politician database. But we didn’t stop there and we designed an audience segmentation tool that allows politicians to save up to a 70% of their budget for digital campaigns. So now our technology is used by politicians in more than 5 countries, and the conservative party already requested a demo of the new service we are launching in October. Therefore we want to dedicate this award to those fools who dared to dream with us. Because it seems that being a fool is not such a bad thing after all”

Read CEO Matias’ post here!