I remember reading an article years ago that stated, “It takes only 9 seconds to make an introduction before the brain starts thinking of something else.” Try this exercise next time you meet someone new and see how long it takes you to sum them up. When you meet face to face, you quickly assess a persons attitude, personality, appearance, social skills, and body language.
Our online presence is different in the sense, it takes one negative comment to make or break your personal brand! Think about what you see on your social networking stream. How many people do you delete due to negative and inappropriate posts? We all have them. You are the conductor of your social media orchestration. Don’t think because you delete a post that it won’t be viewed by someone or remembered. These images become a representation of how you are being portrayed.
Your brand is determined by how others perceive you. If your employer looked at your profile and posts would they be disappointed in your personal brand? What image do you project and is it a good one? You never know who will see your profile and if they will be offended by your online presence. More people are taking a step back and really thinking about what they share and like because they may not want to be associated with certain controversial subjects. Social media has given people the courage now to say things online that you would never say to someones face. Once it is posted the repercussions can be the kiss of death to your personal brand and career.
The workforce is so competitive that now certain companies requirement is to examine your social media profiles. You can have a stellar work ethic, great communication skills, image, qualifications, credentials, but your profile might say otherwise.
Controversial messaging puts your brand at risk. We must remain sensitive to what we put out there. I remember growing up when there was no technology like there is today. You received your news from the television, paper, and radio. My parents always taught me to never say or do anything if I didn’t want it to end up on the front page of the newspaper. You only get one reputation. You can’t buy a new one. So don’t blow it!
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