What’s your personal brand?
You’ve all seen them. The disclaimers on social media profiles that say, “My views do not represent the views of my employer”, or “these tweets are my own”, or, “my views do not reflect on my employer”.
Let me say this:
- If you said, “I think poverty should be eradicated”, your disclaimer now makes it look like your employer supports poverty.
- Who else would own your tweets?
- Yes, yes your views do reflect on your employer.
Despite the fact that some firms require this of their employees, these disclaimers have absolutely no legal standing. They aren’t going to save you from being sued if you say something slanderous or libelous. They aren’t going to prevent your employer from being concerned if you tweet something that affects the brand.
Let’s look at an example, based on those ubiquitous Pepsi ads. The one where the Coke guy’s truck breaks down and the Pepsi gang offers a ride. What if the Coke guy, whose Twitter profile dutifully says, “these tweets are my own!”, tweeted, “Wow these Pepsi guys rock!”?
How long do you suspect Coke guy would be working for Coke after that? Even with the disclaimer?
Everything you do online, professionally or personally, contributes to your personal brand. Everything. Who you are reflects on you hired you. If you post personal drama on social media, if you post about how drunk you got on Friday night (and include pics of said debauchery), if you have nothing but a solid stream of complaints on your feed, your personal brand is what I would call “bad”.
Even who you follow is a comment, there for all to see, on what you stand for.
Make no mistake, potential employers are checking you out. New friends check you out. Something as simple as how a business responds to a customer service issue posted on Twitter can hinge on your personal brand.
Shouldn’t your social media presence represent the positive and engaged you?