The Consequences of an Online Presence Gone Wrong
Do you ever wonder what long-term consequences your online presence, such as social media, could have on your career if you have a questionable social media presence? From supervisors making hiring and promotion decisions to peers and clients forming opinions about your professionalism, your online actions can significantly impact the perception of you as a capable employee or business partner.
Consequences for yourself
There is no doubt that in today’s digital age, it is vital to be aware of your personal brand and how your brand is perceived by the public online. Likely, your social media blunders will permanently remain part of your online presence and digital footprint for as long as the internet exists, which can lead to
- Damaged relationships with colleagues and clients
- Loss of trust from stakeholders, supervisors, and higher-ups
- Jeopardizing your current position or reputation within your industry
- Being passed over for promotions or leadership roles
- Negative perception in the eyes of potential future employers
- And even legal consequences
Consequences for your family
But it’s not just your professional reputation that can suffer from a negative online presence. You might also harm the perception of those around you if you post too much personal information or questionable content on your social network site.
Think about how your online actions reflect on those closest to you. There is a possibility that your parents, siblings, and children would not want to be associated with offensive or inappropriate posts, and the consequences can lead to
- Loss of respect from family and friends
- Damage to familial relationships
- Being ostracized by the community or social circles
- Family members being passed over for job opportunities
- Family members being targeted for online harassment or bullying
Consequences for your team
In addition to harming your reputation, having a negative online presence can also negatively affect your team’s reputation. It is vital that, as a team member, you consider the impact your actions may have on the larger group. Inappropriate or unprofessional social media posts can make the team, department, or even an entire organization appear careless and sloppy, which can lead to
- Jeopardizing team or department success
- Decrease in teamwork and morale
- Damage to the team or company’s reputation
- Loss of trust from clients and customers
- Loss of business opportunities
- Decrease in profits
Consequences for your company
Just one slip-up or scandal can significantly impact your company’s success and perception in the marketplace. In your role as an employee, you must keep in mind that you are representing yourself, your team, and your organization as a whole. Posting damaging or offensive content on social media can negatively reflect on the company, possibly damaging its reputation and hindering its ability to grow its businesses. It can lead to
- Losing business and financial opportunities
- Damaging relationships with customers, clients, and stakeholders
- Affecting the perception of the company’s values and professionalism
- Decreasing trust in leadership
- Negative impact on recruitment and job opportunities
- Harming partnerships with other companies
- Decreasing employee morale
- Potentially facing legal consequences
- Tarnishing the overall reputation and perception of the brand
So what should you do instead?
If you are tempted to overshare or post impulsively on your social media accounts, take a moment to consider the impact that your online behaviors may have on yourself, your friends and family, and any larger organizations or teams that you are part of.
There is no such thing as a private post on social media, so always keep that in mind. Almost anyone can access this information today, and it will have a lasting impact on the perception of a company and its reputation. Be conscientious of what you’re posting and think before hitting ‘publish.’ To achieve success for yourself, your team, and your organization, you should maintain a positive online presence. This means using Social Media to
- Share information and updates relevant to your industry
- Build a network of connections in your field
- Endorse and recommend others for their skills and abilities
- Participate in online discussions and contribute valuable insights
- Keep your profile updated with current positions and qualifications
- Join professional groups or organizations and actively engage in them
- Maintain a positive, professional tone in all online interactions
- Avoid posting controversial or polarizing opinions
- Think carefully before posting personal information
- Consciously create a digital footprint that supports your career goals and objectives
So, before hitting the “post” button, consider e.v.e.r.y single time how others may perceive the content and if it aligns with your personal and professional brand. It’s better to err on the side of caution and avoid posting anything that may negatively affect yourself and those around you. Happy posting!
What are your rules for what you will and won’t post?
And are you interested in some of the most critical things to post. Take a look at this article.
The consequences of an online presence gone wrong in a nutshell
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