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Your Social Media Image- Are You Ruining It?

I see motivational quotes, posters, notes, essays and status updates on my newsfeed on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. A lot of my friends 'Like' these pictures, share them, forward them, and comment on them- mostly positive stuff; with the hopes of applying the lesson(s) from the picture they are sharing. The intention of those posts is most certainly good.

But why is it then, at the first sign of adversity, problems or constructive criticism, there are some people who love washing their dirty linen in public? And the irony is, these are sometimes lovely individuals in person, but their alter-egos appear on Facebook. Almost like Dr Jecykll & Mr Hyde.

Social media is wonderful. I am one of those individuals who believes in the power of networking and keeping in touch via social media. It's easy to be a keyboard warrior. Maybe even fun! But, remember... your image is online; or read, your image is on-the-line.

Each time you post something, people form an opinion and judgment. If you are one of those who says, 'I don't care what people think of me!' then of course, this article does not apply to you. But if you have childhood friends, teachers, friends, colleagues and bosses who truly matter to you, be careful and conscientious with what you post on social media. The same way we care about our hair, shoes and suits, that's the same amount of care you need to put into your virtual image online. If we would not say something in person to a colleague / friend / family face to face, what's the need to blast it out online for your entire network to see?

So before you post something online, ask yourself:

  1. What is the purpose of this post? Is it necessary?

  2. Will this be read by the right target audience?

  3. Is there room for this status / picture to be misunderstood?

  4. Should I 'select' who I want this status (rant) to appear to?

  5. Is this constructive?

  6. Could I word this better?

  7. Will this damage my image?

  8. Should I update my privacy settings?

People have missed out on career progressions and some have lost their jobs based on what they have posted on the wonderful virtual world. There are people who even lose friendships because of topics they argue about on Facebook and could not learn to agree to disagree. Sad. All because we are too tense to use some common sense.

-Sam Andrews-

The Box Training's Guest Contributor

Man Behind Laptop

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