Vincy Workplace
November 23, 2012

Five Facebook habits that are bad for your career

Facebook can be a wealth of information, great marketing for your business, and a wonderful way to stay in touch with family and friends, but it can also wreak havoc on your professional reputation. The things you say on Facebook can actually impact your ability to be hired, as employers are now making it a habit to peruse your Facebook profile when you are interviewing for a job.{{more}} Is your profile clean? If you are not sure, then here are five things to avoid.

1. Playing games. Playing games in itself is not a problem, but when you consistently bombard your Facebook friends with requests to join you in playing, and they refuse, but you ignore them anyway, that is a problem. I recently got 64 requests from one person to play Farmville. Some of the games are very violent, and as they show up on your timeline, it says a lot about what you value. An employer looking at your profile will see you have too much time on your hands.

2. Racy Pictures. Whether it’s your drunken party pictures, provocative beach pictures or you just fooling around with a camera in suggestive poses, you might want to think twice before posting. Some people are trying to recapture their youth and others are too naïve to know the damage they are causing themselves. Even though your friends say you look hot, that does not make it professionally acceptable.

3. Tag, you are it. Remind the people in your Facebook circles not to tag you in racy pictures, profanity laden posts or other questionable activities that will paint you in a negative light, simply by association. Untag the pictures immediately.

4. Too much sharing. Facebook has revealed that there are a lot of attention-seeking people desperately needing an audience on a moment-by-moment basis. We all do not need to know hourly updates on what you are doing. Do you really need to say good night and good morning to your “Facebook family” on a daily basis? If they truly are family, call or visit them or message them privately.

5. Venting. We all have bad days. However, telling the world in filthy language that your boss, co-worker, family or a random stranger annoyed you is no way to exist. Vent your frustration by going for a run, taking a walk or talking it over with a friend offline. Let’s get back to face-to-face interaction when possible.

Let’s make this clear—Facebook and all of the Internet do not have an erase button! Once it is posted, it’s stored somewhere in Internet land even if you delete it. Once it’s posted, it can always be accessed later with some effort.

Karen Hinds is “The Workplace Success Expert.” For a FREE SPECIAL REPORT on Avoiding Career Killers in the Workplace, send an email to
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