For years we’ve been told to be careful with our social media profiles, for fear that some humourless individual somewhere will use it as a stick to beat us with in a work scenario.But does being risk averse mean we’re projecting an equally counter-productive sanitised view of ourselves?
We want to show ourselves as effective, intelligent and experienced employable individuals. We also want to show ourselves as human beings. None of us are cold corporate robots.
But, somewhere in the middle – where the slippery slope begins – we unwittingly succumb to projecting a counter-productive image of ourselves, in part because we’re not marketers, PR experts, writers, or photographers.
Wesley Crusher, Star Trek, Next Generation. Earnest. Bore.
What results is something earnest, boring, and counter-productive. Nice enough, but no real rapport. No energy. No spirit. Generally speaking, a pain in the arse.
LinkedIn is a personal PR platform. We all forget that sometimes. And some people are, unwittingly perhaps, coming across like LinkedIn bores.
Not you, obviously.
I’m not a complete idiot. I’m not going to insult you, the reader. That would be dumb.
Inevitably, my view risks alienating quite a lot of people. It’s nuanced, distinctive, and personal. Social media doesn’t do nuance. LinkedIn isn’t home to the personal.
But, our professional selves should be distinctive, shouldn’t they?
How will others unknown to us have any real sense whether they’d like to work with us? In a world where choice is made easier, distinctiveness is ever more important.
So, here’s a few things I’ve noticed that annoy the hell out of me. Things that make me think I wouldn’t want to work with those people – the perpetrators of some personal PR crimes. Things, I think should be avoided at all costs.
If we have to be wary of such behaviour in the workplace, shouldn’t we be the same way online?
If we don’t have the benefit of a PR expert challenging us on what we’re saying and what we mean, do we need to be hyper-aware of how we’re projecting ourselves professionally?
Siobhan Sharpe, W1A. Supposed expert masking lack of knowledge with nonsense. Bore.