Many of us grew up playing games like Truth or Dare or 20 Questions that require us to be transparent. One of my favorite group icebreaker activities is two truths and a lie because it’s fun to see what people think about you as well as what they are willing to share about themselves.
In addition to being an introvert, I am a naturally private person with strong boundaries. I laugh to myself when I think about when I was once called ‘secretive’ because I refused to share details of my life with someone who thought they were entitled to that part of my life. It’s not even about whether I trust someone not to spread my business, it’s about who I grant the privilege of joining certain parts of my world. I am not secretive, and I have every right to choose what I share and with whom. Yes, it’s a privilege to be closely connected to me just like it’s a privilege to be closely connected to you.
What is your favorite online platform?
Our digital footprint is important. Social media often seems like 20 Questions on double steroids, but I promised myself that I would get more ‘social’ on social media. The best part is that I get to define my purpose for using and select the stories that I share. Business coaches always talk about building the ‘know, like, and trust’ factor, and it’s clear from our fascination with reality TV and social media that people enjoy following other people’s lives. But social media will get to know me on my terms – I will not be joining in on what I consider oversharing trends. I will not be going live from my bed and I don’t need to be a virtual spectator at someone’s delivery or surgery. The good news is that you also get to choose what you share and consume.
Social media is an amazing job search tool. You can expand and nurture your professional network, share work that you are proud of, alert your community about your job search, position yourself as a thought leader, and research and apply for jobs globally. I don’t post anything online that I wouldn’t say in person. If I wouldn’t associate with someone in real life, I will not engage with them online. The bottom line is to use social media for YOUR good.
Homework: Complete an internet search of your name using different search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.) and make note of all the things that show up on the first page.
- Are you happy with the search results?
- Are you alarmed by anything that you see?
- Did discover that you don’t exist online?
- What changes do you want to make?
Let me know if you need help building your professional brand to position yourself for career success.
Nicki Sanders, MSW, ushers high-performing women of color in mid-level social work and human services leadership through promotion to senior leadership. As Founder and CEO of Nicki Sanders Leadership Consulting, her mission is simple – to eliminate toxic workplaces by developing skilled, empathetic, and goal-oriented leaders who have the vision, support, and resources to create a culture where business prospers, and employees thrive individually and collectively. Nicki has an extensive background in nonprofit management leading high-functioning, multi-disciplinary teams. She is an accomplished professor, coach, trainer, and group facilitator who has combined her gift for authentic relationships, Master of Social Work degree, and over 20 years of diverse work experience to create a life and career aligned with her values and purpose. Nicki is a lover of cupcakes, travel, and 80’s hip hop and R&B music.
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