How’s your professional brand? Polished? Cutting-edge? Or maybe a little rough around the edges?
Any one of those is fine – so long as it works for you. Not everybody has to keep up appearances online.
But a lot of us do. Most of us, in fact. We may not have to polish our personal brand to the extent an executive would, but we still need to behave in a way that doesn’t put people off. If we happen to be in sales or consulting, or if we might want a new job soon, the stakes get higher. The rules of play are more exacting.
As you know, it’s easy to post things online that could come back to bite you later on. Often, these sorts of posts don’t seem like a big deal at the time. Usually, they’re not. I’m not talking about the overt, fringe posts of frat party material or extreme ideas. I’m talking about stuff an otherwise sane person, in a moment of weakness (or in the desperation to make a sale or land a client), might be susceptible to.
So these are social faux pas – not transgressions against humanity. They’re just a bit too off-putting, or a bit too weird. You might even be forgiven for them on Facebook. But LinkedIn in is a different story.