5 tips when adding colleagues to Facebook

By Staff | August 27, 2013 | Last updated on August 27, 2013
2 min read

This post was originally published on smallbizadvisor.ca.

There’s no denying that Facebook is everywhere—even in the office. And many people wouldn’t think twice about adding colleagues to their social media networks. However, new research by OfficeTeam suggests that might not be such a good idea.

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The firm conducted telephone interviews with 342 senior managers at Canadian companies, and found that most senior managers are uncomfortable being friended by their bosses (71%) or the employees they supervise (66%). In addition, 50% of those surveyed prefer not to connect with any co-workers on Facebook.

“People have different comfort levels when it comes to social media, so it’s best not to blanket colleagues with friend requests,” says Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. “Along with being selective about who you ask to connect with online, you should always post prudently. You don’t want to share information that could reflect poorly on you.”

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Still, it may sometimes be okay to add colleagues to your Facebook network, if you proceed with caution. The firm offers these five tips:

  • Let your boss or those more senior than you make the first move. Proactively sending a friend request could create an awkward situation.
  • Check out whether colleagues have other employees in their networks before asking them to connect. If their lists are limited to favourite work pals, they may not be eager to friend a wider group of co-workers.
  • When in doubt, ask individuals whether they would be interested in connecting on social media before sending an invite.
  • Review your profile and make sure there isn’t anything posted that could damage your professional image. You may prefer that your colleagues not see your spring break photos, game updates or quiz results.
  • You aren’t obligated to share social media updates with everyone in the office. If you’re concerned about slighting people by turning down invites, you can accept friend requests but use privacy settings and lists to control who can view certain content.

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Advisor.ca staff


The staff of Advisor.ca have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.