Have you ever thrown a party and invited 2 different groups of friends? Maybe you’ll get lucky and everyone will mix well. But it’s more likely that your party will closely resemble a 7th grade dance. Two groups of people at either edge, not really interacting. After you do that one or two times you’ll realize that a party should be geared towards one group of friends at a time.
Facebook is a lot like that party.
We’ve all heard the advice about posting wild party pictures in college. People will see it. Potential employers will see it. It might hurt your chances of getting a job.
But what about after you’re working in that adult job? People don’t really talk about that.
So you start the job. You make friends. You go to Happy Hours. At some point you become Facebook friends. Seems like a normal progression, right? But wait – you just gave a co-worker complete access to your non-work life. Your party pictures, personal opinions, rants, etc. It doesn’t matter how professional you act at work, they know who you really are.
Ok so let’s say that you took care of the college party pics. You cleaned things up. Now the coworkers can be on there, right? Not yet. Because you’re still mixing co-workers with every friends from every other place in your life. Everything you post to one group can be seen by the other. If you have that one inappropriate friend who makes comments on your wall then be ready for co-workers to see it. And don’t get mad at that inappropriate friend… he’s acting the same way he’s always acted. You’re the one who brought in someone new and expected your current friends to suddenly act differently without telling them to.
What can you do?
Option 1: Just set up “groups” in facebook. Separate out your college friends, co-workers, family, etc. so that they don’t see each other. Then your problem is solved. Your inappropriate friend can write whatever he wants and your boss will never know it.
Option 2: Don’t be friends with anyone on Facebook that you’re worried about. That’s the one I do. If I don’t want you to see in to my world then I won’t be friends with you. I refuse to be friends with any co-workers or clients (unless they were grandfathered in from another group).
Option 3: Realize that your worlds are going to collide and deal with it.
I hope this helps. If you find yourself getting mad at someone posting a comment on your wall then stop and ask if you created the problem in the first place. Separate your worlds. It will make life easier.