The Internet has integrated all of our worlds – professional, social, personal. This is great because coworkers and even bosses seem more human. Of course this is also terrible, as every status update and comment reach every corner of our world. As in the classic Seinfeld conflict of “relationship George” vs “independent George” – all of your different facets are forced to co-exist in cyberspace, which can be a dangerous situation.
To avoid the repercussions that may result from this small world, PC World Business Center gives us Facebook Etiquette: Five Dos and Don’ts. This article offers great tips on how to make your profile picture, tone, biography, and content suitable for all the different areas of your life, both professional and personal. One key takeaway is the importance of a “polite and measured tone” even on more relaxed sites like Facebook. Social media is too public to truly let your digital hair down.
You should also approach LinkedIn carefully. The Social Times published the top LinkedIn Etiquette Tips. LinkedIn is primarily a professional networking tool, and should be used as such. “Make sure your updates are helpful information about your company or profession. LinkedIn is not Twitter or Facebook. ‘Less is more’ applies to this particular platform. Keep the updates to a minimum.” Updates should be focused on valuable information such as sharing articles, video, or event announcements.
I personally use the embarrassment test. I think, “Would I be okay with my parents, grandparents, and boss reading this?” before I post something, and only post if the answer is a solid yes.
What are your rules in etiquette in social media, particularly when using it for professional networking? What is an absolute no-no in your opinion? Share your stories!
Ritu Walia is myGreenlight’s Member Coordinator.