It is increasingly common for stories like this one about a bus driver fired over Facebook postings to show up on newsfeeds. Whether or not you agree with the practice, the reality is that your social media usage has a very public side.
When you think about it, the Internet is like a public park in a big city. When you walk through that park, you see all sorts of people doing all sorts of things. Some of those people might be doing things that make you scratch your head and ask, “What are they thinking?” They probably are thinking that nobody is paying attention to what they are doing.
We have an illusion of privacy on the Internet that is truly an illusion. How many times have you seen a post on Facebook that makes you scratch your head and ask, “what are they thinking?” I know I have… many times. It’s a smart practice to pay attention to your security settings and invest in your online brand — the person you are online — by thinking before you post. You must assume that it will be read by an employer or potential employer because that’s the reality of today’s working world.
Because social marketing and online branding are so important to your career, it’s a good idea to learn all you can about it. Read blogs like this one and consider investing in an hour of online branding/profile development coaching to make sure your professionalism is what people remember about you when they see you in that public park called the Internet.