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Seekhle Kebab Learning Bites: 10 Tips on Social Media Etiquette

Wondering whether to send that friend request to a colleague on Facebook? Or whether to follow someone you like on Twitter but worried should they know? LinkedIn is for professional networking, or for some people is it really?

Taking inspiration from the famous dish – Seekh Kebabs, we have started this series of learning bites with quick tips on a particular topic with easy application in your daily work.

Enjoy reading this Business Etiquette Seekhle Kebab with your favorite chutney i.e. Action on the learning.

In the inter-connected inter-twined online world of today, drawing boundaries is a tough task for each of us, and there are different opinions on the rights and wrongs of social media behavior.

At the same time, we are a brand in ourselves, and our online activity kind of defines that brand as well. Employers these days are sure to skim through social media profiles of shortlisted candidates, many times as part of the background check.

Hence it is important we understand that with great connectivity comes greater responsibility. Cliché!

Here are 10 general rules you could follow to help maintain a good and consistent brand identity of yourself on social media, for professionals and everyone alike:

1. Choose your friends wisely: Yes, it is not ok to add everyone at work on your Facebook account. The actual relationship comes before the online one, so weigh in your comfort level with the person and then send connection request appropriately

2. Respond… Always (especially on LinkedIn): if someone has written to you, tagged you, or sought your opinion, Respond. It can even be "I’m occupied at present". It is a good professional practice and conveys you value your network and not just what you gain out of it

3. Maintain consistency over multiple platforms: you are your brand and thus it is important to maintain that consistency in your behavior online. It would be odd to see you post a message on positive attitude at work on LinkedIn and then share a “why managers are bad” link on Facebook

4. No complaining, or drunken rants: avoid complaining about work or life on social media, or anywhere actually. And do not post when tipsy, angry, or frustrated

5. Use limited hashtags: we all have seen those posts where the hashtags take up more space than the post itself. Avoid that as it looks overdone

6. Post and Publish carefully: the kind of messages and content we share on social media defines us. Well you may of course contest that, but for someone who doesn’t know you otherwise, it is a reality and they judge you based on what you share online

7. No plagiarism, give credit: copying other’s material and posting as your own is a big no and it kills your credibility. Always give and share credit, and believe me, it all comes back positively

8. Avoid SMS lingo: short text and jargon are really a distraction from the main content. Avoid it and focus on conveying your message clearly

9. Avoid sharing games requests etc.: that candy crush or Farmville request to all friends must be avoided in order to keep a clean profile

10. POSH: certain posts can fall under sexual harassment, and be sure to go through your company’s policy on sexual harassment and be extra careful when sharing something with office colleagues

Ever got into a weird moment on a social platform? Please do share your thought, stories, and comments below.

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