|Operating your Facebook account may come to you naturally, especially if you belong to the“millennial” generation. However, having the right kind of Facebook profile is no a piece of cake. Your social networking activity can drastically affect your personal as well as professional life, which is why there has to be a “right way” to do it.
Every society or community has social norms, laws, rules, — and you know—the basic do’s and don’ts. Don’t mistake Facebook, or any other social networking website, to be a community where you can do whatever you like, say whatever you like, and get away with it. Watch out!
If there is a generally agreed upon code to Facebook-ing the “right way” it will include the following do’s and don’ts.
1) Keep Personal Comments Personal: Just like you would in any organization, household, or society, you need to be careful what you blurt out in front of a large crowd. Oh, btw, Facebook is a large crowd! Imagine screaming out those personal messages to a friend in front of a large crowd. You wouldn’t, would you? Next time you want to talk about something personal, send a message to a friend instead of posting it on your wall or theirs.
2) Be Sensitive About Sensitive Topics: One of the major problems with Facebook accounts is that people post whatever “they feel like”. You need to be very careful about what you are posting and consider the possibility that it could hurt, offend, or un-impress anyone. Note that many people on your friends list (or the public) may come from different backgrounds, cultures, or religions, and posting anything that is “racist” or “rude” will hurt a selection of your friends. If they are on your friends list, they are an associate, and you need to be mindful about such personal remarks!
Many people form views and opinions and post them on Facebook, which is acceptable. But to be on the safe side, try not to post an opinion that is too biased or wouldn’t be approved by at least 80% of the general population.
3) Stick to a Neutral DP: It is important to be thoughtful about your display picture as well, since it is generally the very first impression of you (from the perspective of a stranger). You don’t have to select a boring overly-professional looking studio photograph. However, the cheesy selfie won’t do either. Try to pick a neutral picture that is neither too professional nor too casual. A pixel perfect shot from your last vacation trip with a natural background, neutral dress, and a natural smile would do just fine!
4) Use Disrespectful Language or Tone: Using profanity or having an impolite tone is a turn-off for most people. Don’t try to act cocky, cool, or clever because you will be un-impressing a lot more people than you will be impressing!
5) Post Inappropriate Content: According to several surveys, an inappropriate picture was the top reason why prospective employers would turn down a job seeker. Reserve your crazy, sexy, cute, or cool pics for your closest friends or family only. Adjust the privacy settings and customize it to your target audience.
6) Over-Share Yourself: You might want to share what goes on in your life – or your mind. But there is a difference between sharing and over-sharing. When you are venting out personal thoughts, comments, and experiences that maybe only 3% of your Facebook friends would care about, it is evident that you are over-sharing. Try to share something MOST of your friends would be interested in – and avoid those mundane “I am at the gym” “I love my boyfriend” updates that only one person or your Mom would care about.