Should You Friend Your Boss On Social Media?

Remember the days when your boss was your boss and not your friend on social media? You said goodbye at 5pm and then didn’t hear from him/her again until 9am the following day? Well… those days are gone because now your boss is your social media friend!

In fact it is now true that 75% of HR professionals, including mid-level management, now check the social media profiles of prospective candidates. The professional/personal lines have been blurred and the question is should you friend your boss on social media? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons…

Pro 1: Linking with your boss on social media promotes openness because you and your boss feel you have nothing to hide. This can lead to a higher level of camaraderie between you both.

Con 1: Maybe you do have something to hide! Ok, I’m not talking about illegal stuff but I am talking about wild nights out… remember when you got drunk in that karaoke bar in Vegas? Depending on your boss, you might end up feeling the need to filter your posts.

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Pro 2: You can show your team spirit by sharing company updates, liking your boss’ updates and sharing photos of team events. Your enthusiasm for the job will be evident and shows that your commitment is genuine.

Con 2: You may fall into the trap of sharing too much “work stuff” and alienating all your other friends who don’t really care about your company and its updates.

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Pro 3 You can enjoy a more modern working relationship… less “slave and master” and more colleagues who simply have different roles within the company. By getting to know your boss as a person and not just the one in the big office you will break down hierarchy barriers.

Con 3 Maybe you don’t want that kind of relationship with your boss? If he/she is not a likeable character then you might be happier with the traditional relationship. Seeing weekend photos of your despicable boss in his mankini drinking champagne might just make Monday mornings too awkward for you!

Social Media Compromises

Ok, so you’re sitting on the fence… do you add your boss or not? The choice might have been made for you, especially if your boss has already sent you a friend request! Don’t panic… think about the relationship you have with your boss and make a decision. Here are some compromises:

  1. Don’t Add Any Work Colleagues

If you explain to your boss that you do not add any work colleagues to your social media networks then he will probably take it with good grace. If, however, you tell him this and then add everyone else it probably won’t go down too well!

  1. Add Colleagues to Linkedin

Explain that you prefer to add colleagues to Linkedin where you can happily share work updates and collaborate on team issues. This is a nice compromise as Linkedin is still a social media site but you don’t need to worry about those bikini photos!

  1. Filter Facebook Updates

Accept your boss’ update but then subtly tweak your privacy settings so that your work colleagues and boss can’t see everything you post. Remember to be consistent… if your colleagues are talking about your amazing sky dive photos to your boss who then goes to look and can’t see them it will be very awkward!

Did you add your boss on social media?

Tweet me @charli_says and let me know