If you’re an HR manager, you may well be sold on the idea of taking employee headshots to promote marketing, team building and staff recognition. But that doesn’t mean your company leaders will be 100% on board with the idea, especially if corporate competitors haven’t followed similar strategies.
“We’ve got four generations working in the work world right now, so we’ve all grown up with various mind-sets and personality traits,” notes HR specialist Kelli Spence in HR Daily Advisor. “There are definitely still companies out there with leaders who are not open to how HR has evolved or how growing your culture and making sure your culture is at the top take priority versus profit.”
That’s where your powers of persuasion can come into play. Because the ROI of staff photos isn't necessarily quantifiable, you might consider putting together a brief presentation that explains the logic behind company-wide staff photography.
Here are some factors you might discuss with your company execs.
In today’s digital world, it’s likely that the first impressions of your staff formed by customers and vendors will be the digital images on your website. Naturally, you want those images to be professionally designed and created so they present your staff to their best possible advantage.
Talk about how staff headshots can be designed to align with your company brand. A surprising amount of info can be conveyed by strategic choices in styles, colors, poses, expressions and settings. For example, a conservative bank that relies on customer trust might ask employees to wear traditional suits and to pose in their offices, while an avant-garde art gallery might ask staff to dress in colorful garb in the gallery.
Inviting everyone on your staff to take part in your photography project can build a wonderful sense of camaraderie and teamwork — not to mention helping co-workers learn each other’s names. A highly inclusive process suggests that every person on your staff is important, and the headshots can come in handy later for recognizing staff members who excel.
When staff headshots are posted on your company website, candidates for employment can get a sense of your company culture by observing how everyone is portrayed. A skilled photographer will ensure everyone on your staff appears professional, yet still friendly and approachable in their photos.
There’s really no limit to the ways you can use staff headshots in your marketing strategies; think websites, social media sites, press releases, speaking engagement promos, internal and external newsletters, etc. Optimize headshots anytime you wish to emphasize a human connection or element.
A company’s willingness to post staff photos on its website and elsewhere suggests that it’s an open book with nothing to hide and everything to be proud of. The result: Customers and vendors appreciate being able to put faces to names, and the headshots remind them they’re dealing with real human beings with real strengths and weaknesses.
Looking for more advice about approaching company execs about headshots? Consider the following tips from PowerPoint Ninja:
Be aware of the extent to which the execs will understand the value of company-wide headshots, who might say no and what other factors might be at play in their final decision.
Executives are ultra-busy people. Tell them right away what you’ll be discussing, how long it will take and what you’re trying to achieve.
Make sure you don’t ramble on past your major points, keep everything simple and leave room at the end of your presentation for discussion or questions. That boosts your chances of getting approval on the spot.
Where appropriate, support your arguments by citing data about the power of human images, the importance of building company culture, etc.
Think ahead about what they’re likely to ask, and have solid answers prepared.