Project Manager at the Chatham Group
Recently, Frank Fadil in our office wrote a blog about new rules to live by when utilizing social media. He referenced a great article of how social media can come back to bite someone if they do not think thoroughly about what they are posting and how it may be perceived by a public audience.
I recently read a blog on LinkedIn that highlights the issues that writers face when putting their thoughts out. In an article titled “Why I Hesitate to Hire Forty-Somethings” Belgian entrepreneur Inge Geerdens wrote that she preferred to hire younger workers over people over 40, because “I can’t help but wonder whether we can really afford to pay that huge amount of money.” This article blew up on LinkedIn, with people commenting on both sides of the coin; however, the overwhelming majority of professionals found her article to be negative and blatant ageism.
In a follow up article to her previous blog, Inge attempted to backtrack on her stance just the day before; and while there were some readers who were willing to forgive, again, the majority called her out for her waffling stance on hiring top professionals.
This is a classic example of an individual that has garnered worldwide attention because she did not truly think through what she was writing. Quite frankly, the fact that she stated in the beginning that she was hiring before going on to her main point probably turned off quite a few top talent that prior to the article’s release had considered applying for whatever position she was hiring for.
This is only one instance of a post in social media sites that has gone viral due to either negative connotations or positive. We can all think of other examples on other sites such as YouTube, FaceBook, Twitter or LinkedIn where a post/opinion/video has gone viral. The point is; such sites are within the public domain, and much like a politician that will state his/her ideas to their target audience, individuals need to realize that if/when they post an opinion; they will be judged by those viewing it.