Social media has become an integral part of our lives. And much of what goes on around us revolve around what we read online every day.
While a large percentage of users are more socially inclined, there are others who also use these platforms to market themselves professionally. Whichever category you belong to, it’s important to not to forget that social media is an open place where anyone can come and view your profile. So it’s important not to throw caution to the wind.
Thus, there are certain social media mistakes you want to avoid.
How Social Media Can Affect Your Career
Remember that managers are becoming more tech inclined and so many of them are also on social media. So it would be absurd to presume that your online activities are not being noticed by your boss or colleagues.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should sweep your online social presence under the rock. But instead, you should look for a way to harmonize social media and career.
With this in mind, below are seven social media mistakes you should avoid if you don’t want to screw up.
Speaking ill of your boss or job
When looking for a place to display their anger or complain about their boss or job, some employees often choose to use social media. Of course, this is the last place you want to badmouth someone who signs your pay check.
Although you might not have your boss on your friend list, there’s every chance that a fellow employee could see your posts and report you.
You may not get kicked out of the organization immediately, but something like that can tarnish your image and even prevent future employers from hiring you.
Talking about a new job offer
Another social media mistake you must avoid if you want to thrive in your career is talking about a new job offer. Though you might not know this, but job offers are meant to be confidential, and sometimes even an unserious disclosure can make you lose the job even before you get started.
There have been cases of potential employees who got laid off even before their first day.
Employers expect you to be discreet about a new role even though you’ve been offered the job already. Mindless posts or comments in a public domain like social media can send a wrong signal about you.
Be careful the kind of post or comments you make out there.
Chatting during work hours
If there’s anything you must avoid doing by all means, it is logging into your social media account while at work. This is not only unprofessional but also shameful. Remember you are being paid by the company to WORK, not to PLAY.
Imagine being caught by your boss, or even a colleague, how would you look? There are some employers that can fire you right on the spot.
There’s no rule that says you have to respond to all the notifications you get, especially when they come during your working hours. Your break time is there for such things.
Avoid social media on you working computer and cell phone when on the job. There are many things you can do to boost productivity, chatting on the job is definitely not one of them.
Sharing photos that are inappropriate
Every one of like posting photos of ourselves or some other kind of image on social media. As a career person, it’s extremely important you evaluate every picture you upload before clicking the post button.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with letting everyone know you’re having fun. But you must be careful how your photos appear to the public. Showcasing your drinking antics on social media isn’t exactly the best way to portray yourself to your boss or colleagues.
You don’t want your photos or those shared by friends on your timeline to become a ridicule to your image. It might not cost you the job but the feeling can be awkward when your boss or a potential employer comes across such a photo.
So make sure you monitor what your post on your wall as well as what others post about you. It may help to set privacy settings that allow only a selected people to see your pictures. If possible try to filter any post that have you tagged, so you can judge if it’s appropriate before it’s released to the public domain.
Another social media mistake you must be mindful of is plagiarism.
You probably heard a lot about plagiarism in college and know how detestable it is. It’s even more important in your career that you never get into anything that makes you take credit for other people’s work.
When you duplicate other people’s work without acknowledging them, people will see you as being lazy and incapable of putting in the work to accomplish your own tasks. Such a stench can follow you throughout your career.
Using Texting Language
Another common mistake you must avoid on social media as a career person is using text messaging. HR text messaging is an important tool for any company. So not doing it well even on social can draw the attention of your boss.
You might think using text messaging on a social network like Facebook or Twitter doesn’t mean much, but this is not true. It may not always be convenient to spell everything out, especially when trying to make tweet or post fit, but it is necessary as a professional.
Employers see this as a lack of professionalism. Some of them might even see it as being lazy or not having the ability to properly express yourself, which of course is very embarrassing. You could lose a job for this or even scare off potential employers.
So make sure you always spell out everything when posting anything online. “You” should be spelt as “You” not “U”; “Two” should be spelt as “Two” not “2”, and so on.
Also look out for silly grammatical mistakes.
Posting negative comments
Although you are allowed to say whatever you like on social media, making offensive or discriminate comments is completely unacceptable to employers. If you must give your opinion on any post, make sure it is transparent and doesn’t offend anybody,
Most potential don’t tolerate such comments, and will pick on workers who make such comments. Many employers even go to the extent of checking social media profiles when hiring. In this case, a crude comment could mean a red flag.
Thus in order not to put your career on the line, avoid making racists or malicious comments by all means, or anything that generally sounds rude. Even jokes should be properly constructed in order not to look offensive.
Wrapping it up
We will draw the curtains here. Do let us know if there’s any other social media mistakes that we failed to mention. Or you can let us know if there’s anyone you know whose career has been damaged by social media.