The Power Of Social Network Transparency

2012-02-09 07:00:54

This ‘us against them’ thing has really gotten out of hand. We live in an ‘Occupy Everything’ world where 24/7 transparency is occasionally clipped by anonymity and the Anonymous movement to disrupt supposed social injustices while complaints of retaliation by employers trumped race for the second consecutive year, according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Now breathe and let’s start again…

In the world of work, whether you’re looking for a new job or looking for advancement within, you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

But no matter what you do, I beg of you to just be you. In fact, be a personally responsible you, even if the reality is you must post anonymously about a company you worked for, liked it or not. I understand that flies in the face of dealing with greater social injustice – sometimes you’ve got to fight fire with fire – but we’re talking about the power of network transparency here and how you can use it to benefit you and your career (and those you influence).

For example, Glassdoor launched their newest job-seeking tool called Inside Connections, which leverages your Facebook friends to help you then quickly uncover who you know inside specific companies you’re interested in. This includes connecting all of Glassdoor’s job and career-related information with your Facebook friends’ companies – like company reviews, CEO ratings, salary reports and interview questions and reviews.

Glassdoor isn’t the only career management service leveraging the power of the Facebook network. And according to a recent article in The Economist, here’s why:

Facebook knows a staggering amount about its users. It is also constantly devising ways to find out more, such as Timeline, a new profile page that encourages people to create an online archive of their lives. The company mines users’ data to work out what they like and then hits their eyeballs with spookily well-targeted ads. Last year it overtook Yahoo! to become the leading seller of online display ads in America.

Holy cow – we’re talking about nearly one billion users soon, or one in seven of the world’s population. That’s pretty amazing when you think about 10 years ago when the mainstream wasn’t really jazzed by online user groups or even really searching for a job online.

Today, if you’ve got your more professional online portable profile ready to go on LinkedIn, you definitely need to get your professional personality shining brightly on Facebook, right next to your cute little kid pictures, like me.

Should you diligently and regularly be checking your privacy settings on any social network you participate on? Of course you should. And if you’ve ever received a hot job tip or referral from a friend who works on the inside of where you’d might like to be, then be diligent and regularly check yourself for what you’re sharing on any social network you participate on.

I don’t know about you, but anonymous or not, expect me (and nothing else).

Categories: Career Advice