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Crafting Compelling Employee Stories for Employer Branding Success

3 min read.



Employer Branding

I’ve seen a lot of employee “story” content out there. Almost all of it misses the mark of what sharp employee content should achieve for your employer brand – making talent sit up and take notice.

The intention is good. Employee content puts someone relatable in the spotlight, someone that resonates, someone just like your ideal candidate.

…And it works.

Brand messages shared by employees on social media earn 561 percent more reach than the same messages shared by the brand's account.

Compared to that, corporate generated “we’re hiring” and “look how great we are” content is white noise. So, if you want to get noticed, involving employees in your content is non-negotiable.

But so much of employee story potential is wasted when they aren’t framed the right way. 

I’m not saying you have to write the next Lord of the Rings here (although, if your company makes fantasy video games, why not make your employee the hero of a quest? That would be pretty cool.)

But there’s an easy fix to make your employee stories more engaging, readable and, well, like something you could call an actual story without Tolkien thrashing in his grave.

The missing ingredient in employee stories

So, what’s missing? Where do most employee “stories” get it wrong?

The simple answer is they lack drama. If you took most employee stories and added in a sprinkle of drama, they’d be 5x more engaging.

You might be thinking, “Oh, I'm only doing this for employer branding. We don't want drama.”

But drama just means something of interest, that moves a character forward, or creates an antagonising crossroads.

You wouldn’t watch a movie if the hero got from point A to B without any bumps in the road - a movie where Frodo pops down the road to Mordor and effortlessly destroys the ring.

With nothing to overcome, there’s nothing to captivate.

What if, instead of talking about how seamless their journey with your company was, the new graduate intern admitted they were terrified to apply because they felt under-qualified?

What if the employee who's been with the company for 10 years didn't list ten things they love about it, and instead explained the reasons they almost quit and, crucially, why they didn’t?

Without drama, there may be a narrative, but there’s no story.

Ask the right questions

The best way to get better stories is to ask better questions.

Instead of:

What do you love about working here?


What has been the greatest challenge of your time here? How did you overcome it?

Dig for conflict. Set employees up to deliver something authentic and captivating. Otherwise, you’re another brand pedalling manicured content talent doesn't care about. 

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