How’d you get your last job? I’m guessing there is a high likelihood that you got the position through someone you know or through a friend-of-a-friend. And if you work for yourself or in a freelance field your livelihood is that much more influenced by who you know and who those people know.
People in charge tend to hire others based on recommendations of their friends and co-workers for many reasons. Namely: the person doing the hiring will usually trust the person that is doing the recommending (at least on some level) because the person doing the recommending probably has insights into what is needed for the job (especially if they work at the company). Also, the person doing the hiring might just want to do the person doing the recommending a favor, essentially saying, “Well, even if we don’t hire this person I at least interviewed them so that means we gave him/her a shot”. And looky there, the potential hire has their foot in the door and has a significantly higher chance of actually getting the job then someone who has no connection at all, and all because of who they know.
There’s a reason the saying, “It’s all who you know” exists, because it’s true — that’s how many jobs get procured, connections are connected, and ultimately, how money gets made.
So how does Facebook come into play in all of this? We’ve all heard the warnings on the news about being careful to not post those drunken photos of yourself for fear of potential bosses or future human relations departments eyes coming across them but what about those Facebook status updates? They seem harmless enough right?
Well, I’ve got to ask you, have you seen those painfully passive aggressive status updates? You know the ones that go something like, “Life is so unfair!!!! How did I get surrounded by all these idiots?” Or even worse, the rants that go on to name someone in particular?! You know the ones I’m talking about.
While it’d be nice to think that you’re just venting to your closest 704 friends I’ve got to tell you that even though Facebook is not a professional website some status updates could hurt you professionally, and they could cost you thousands of dollars and all without you even realizing it.
How? Facebook is made up of your friends, co-workers, acquaintances, and friends-of-friends, and these are the very same people that you ask for interview hook-ups, recommendations, job leads, and miscellaneous gigs.
Ask yourself: If you have the option of hiring someone or making a recommendation to someone else would you recommend the passive aggressive status updater, the dirty laundry airer, or the rage-y ranter? I’m guessing you might think twice about it.
For me, it makes me think, if this person’s only method (or one of their only methods) of being able to cope with an unsavory situation is to try to elicit sympathy from a vague Facebook statement then that’s not someone I want much to do with. (It also makes me wonder if the post is somehow about me and if I offended the person without even realizing it! I’ve gotten better about not taking on things like that if the person doesn’t talk to me directly about an issue, but still…)
I know I wouldn’t want to screw my friend over my recommending a high-maintenance, negative, or passive-aggressive person (much less work with them myself), so recommending them to a single soul? Not happening.
Morale of the story: If you have to complain, vent , or just get something off your chest, do it verbally, and in person, and to people who can truly help you get through an upsetting situation. Save everyone else the cringes, and potentially save yourself thousands of dollars by simply keeping your rants to yourself.
Are you guilty of passive-aggressive Facebook posts? I’m curious do you agree or disagree, and do Facebook status updates have that much power?