A journalist who doesn’t want to be named maintains an active Twitter account but all her tweets are ‘protected’, which essentially means she can control the people who read her Tweets.
And there are many like her. Let’s have a look at how social media influences employees and employers, both positively and otherwise.
To friend or not to friend
While companies believe in replacing the word ‘judge’ by ‘observe’ when they look up their employees’ Facebook or Twitter profiles, employees on the other hand are wary of this arrangement. Ashish Kumar, a sales professional says, “I am very careful when it comes to keeping my personal and professional life separate. I have never encouraged FB friend requests from my managers.” And it’s not limited to only workplaces. In the recent past, some students had casually posted objectionable content about their teachers or school on Facebook. They were suspended immediately.
Aditya Gupta, co-founder Social Samosa, an Indian social media knowledge portal elaborates, “Instances where people have been fired for putting up controversial updates are not new. And there are multiple reasons like slandering about the company/boss, tweeting about “how boring work is today”, comparing their salaries with their colleagues and so on.”
“There was another instance, where a leading gaming portal was hiring. The interviewee tweeted something about the portal on the lines of “XYZ portal looks dumb” while he was waiting his turn for the interview. In the meanwhile the interviewer looked up the candidate’s Twitter profile, read the Tweet, took a printout and handed it to the dumbstruck interviewee. Needless to say he wasn’t hired,” shares Aditya.
Taking the rapport a step ahead of normal
Befriending your boss on Facebook is tricky. It’s almost as if you’re letting your professional life invade into your personal space. However, in some cases it helps build some rapport with your superior at the workplace. Richa Mehta, a marketing and communications professional kept her boss’ Facebook friend request pending for almost two months. It was only after he asked her in person about it that she decided to accept his friend request. “Facebook is too personal a space for me and I didn’t want my boss to be privy to my life outside work. I had no choice but to accept his friend request because he kept asking me about it. Of course, I was smart enough to put him in the ‘limited profile view’ group,” she says.
Social Recruitment, the new age hiring process
India is well-versed with the various social media channels and people’s behaviour on the same. Also, hiring individuals via online social networks has become a norm, thanks to its cost-effective nature. Besides professional networking platforms like LinkedIn, now, even informal sites like Facebook and Twitter are being used to announce jobs and JDs. But what’s remarkable is the transition in the process of recruitment across companies. “Many big companies now have ‘Social Recruiting’ or ‘Social Talent Acquisition’ as special job description shows that this has become the need of the hour. Such practices help the companies analyse whether the employee will prove to be a good team player or has the potential to be a leader. It is for this reason that many professionals seriously work towards branding themselves well online,” says Aditya.
Online social networks and channels behave the way you want them to. The idea is to play it smart. “That’s where sly tweeting comes in handy,” Manoj, a graphic designer and a Twitter addict chuckles and continues, “If I want to rant about my job or gossip about a colleague, I can do that on the sly, without taking names, ensuring he/she gets the message.” – TOI