Many companies have their ways of managing social media use in the workplace. Some block social networks, including Twitter and Facebook, while others allow their employees to log on to these sites during break times. Regardless of these policies, however, businesses have no way of controlling what their employees say about them during non-work hours. This is where problems start for employees and employers.
Research says seven out of ten employees use social networks. These users spend an average of 15 ½ hours on social networking sites monthly. Furthermore, one out of four social network users don’t set their privacy parameters. This means anyone can see their posts on anything – from updates on their busy schedules to complaints about their job. Many employees don’t see any harm in this. It’s their social network, after all; they can say whatever they want to say on it. But can you really?
There are no stopping employees from airing their feelings about their companies on social networks. This is why many businesses are now vigilant in monitoring what their employees say about them online. Sure, the First Amendment protects employees from legal actions of protected speech. This doesn’t mean, however, that you won’t deal with negative effects. Let’s think of it this way, you wouldn’t dare insult your employer to his face, for fear of getting fired. Right? Posting an insult on your social network is quite the same thing.
Here’s what can happen when you vent your dissatisfaction at work on your social networks.
Using social networking sites irresponsibly can cost you your career. Getting fired, however, isn’t the only consequence you have to deal with. You may face lawsuits, especially when you gave away confidential details about your company and their business processes. You may also have a difficult time looking for another job. Apart from monitoring their brands, companies use social networks to find potential employees. When they don’t like what they see on your profile page, they won’t even invite you for an initial interview. Furthermore, many hiring managers conduct online background checks on their future employees. According to a study, about 70% of job recruiters reject applicants after doing online investigations.
Creating a Good Online Persona
Your online profile is an extension of yourself in the real world. What you do on social networks say many things about your personality offline. While your employers can’t control what you post online, your actions can very well shape your career. How you use these social networking sites can either boost or ruin your profession.
It’s easy to create a good online persona. When you can’t stop ranting on social networking sites, think about fixing your privacy setting. This can effectively limit the things you share publicly. It can also prevent future employers from thinking you’ll be a bad hire for their companies. You can get your foot through the door and the chance to let them know you can be an asset to the company. At the end of the day, responsible use of social media can help employers and employees achieve their goals.
Do you want to learn more about social media? Contact us for more information on social media marketing and management.