Friday, August 19, 2011

The Facebook Issue: Your Professional & Personal Life Don't Mix

The rise of social media has brought about a change in the way how employees present themselves online. Any misappropriate conducts on the Internet, either through Facebook or Twitter can cause an employee to be in a lot of trouble if his or her employer finds out. Didn’t show up for work because of a hangover but you told your boss that you are sick? Or what about providing negative remarks aimed at your superior? These are some of the gaffes made by employees on social media sites that will bring about some significant negative consequences if employers do find out.

With more and more companies utilizing social media to make their presence known on the web, employees are more at risk of revealing too much online. Thinking of finding a new job without your bosses knowing? Better think twice about updating your Facebook status. The same goes with commenting derogatory remarks about your bosses. This is certainly something of concern if you have added your boss as your friend or your privacy status is inadequate from avoiding those prying eyes. So don’t blame your superiors for being too omnipresent on the web, you should take a step back and analyze on your presence on social media websites.

Let’s take the Ashley Payne’s case (read article here: Can Employers Fire Over Facebook Gaffes? - for example. She was dismissed from her job after she was caught posting a picture of herself holding beer on Facebook. That is why it is important to limit your exposure online lest your career could be affected. Nowadays, companies are also resorting to perform a sort-of quick “background” check on individuals applying for positions in these companies through social media platforms. Facebook is just a click away after all. The picture of you with a beer pong? Or the one with you posing in an indecent manner? Better increase the privacy settings of those photos before your future employers find out which might reduce your chances for any career advancement.

What has an employee got to do to prevent any blunders from being overtly “active” on social media? Well, first thing you should not do is add your bosses as your friends. You need to separate your professional life and personal life. Do not mix both of them together. But what if a superior of yours wants to add you as his or her friend? Politely decline their request. You can say that you are not that active on those said social media sites or you only add family members and relative to stay in touch. Besides, you should also adjust your privacy settings. Ensure that the message or status you post is intended to a specific group of friends and not to your bosses. Google+ has that nifty option. The next time you post, edit the settings beforehand.

Above all else, be vigilant of what you say online as anything offensive can affect you in the end. Social media should be something fun and enjoyable and not the other way around.


  1. Yes you are right and this problem is very common nowadays, and i also have faced this situation when i have joined facebook early and i added my manager, once i was in office and using facebook, in-spite of it that it was prohibited in working hours, then my manager got me online on facebook and give negative remarks about me to boss. Now i have decided don't add your manger, boss or any authorities from you office or if you have to add them then customize your privacy settings.

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  2. As its usage is increasing rapidly people don't take it serious on their jobs that they are in office not in home at all therefore they should avoid to mix their professional and personal usage.

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