Thursday, July 30, 2009

What Your Boss Knows Could Hurt You

OVER THE PAST 30 or so years, I've done loads of hiring: writers, editors, producers, temps, interns, even the occasional artist. Most of those hires have turned out to be terrific employees; others ... well, nobody's perfect.

Despite following best practices for interviewing, asking all the right questions, and checking references, I've sometimes found that the fit between the job and the employee isn't right. The result is a mismatch that no one could have anticipated. That's what I used to think. Social media, from Facebook to
Flickr, has expanded everyone's digital footprint, stri
pping us of our anonymity and turning many of us into public-or semipublic, anyway-figures. That can work in your favor, if you're seeking a job, a date, or admission to a school. It can also sabotage your chances. Let me tell you a story

At a previous position, not that long ago, I was looking to hire a Web producer. It was an entry level position that would rely less on specific skills than on ambition, maturity, fluency with social networks, and (most important) brains. I posted the job on Cnigslist and received the obligatory flood of resumes, from which I ultimately identified five qualified candidates to follow up with.

A preliminary round of phone calls to the candidates-more of a check-in than a real interview-narrowed the field to four (one candidate had just accepted
another job). The remaining applicants
all looked like winners, and one fellow, let's call
him "Bill," was particularly impressive.He had solid journalistic experience in college; possessed a personable phone manner, had interned at a well-known Web site; and had written humorous pieces for another. I had that Bill would soon be working for me.

First, though, I began digging around on the Web to see if there was any publicly available information about Bill that might inform my hiring decision. Right off, I found his personal blog, which was cleverly designed, regularly maintained, and well written. Check. Other searches brought up articles that he had written for his college newspaper. Check. He had tweaked his privacy settings on Facebook to reveal little information, suggesting that he understood the dynamics of social networks. Check. A Twitter search of his name turned up his Twitter user name and profile, which were public. So far, so good.

Trouble on the Road

When I scanned his tweets, though, I found a link to a gritty YouTube video he had posted, showing him and his buddies driving through a neighborhood while drinking, laughing uproariously,
and yelling out the window. Yellow flag. The numbe
r one quality I was seeking was intelligence, and Bill had posted a video on the open Internet essentially advertising his poor judgment. When my subsequent online investigations of the other candidates turned up no similar lapses of common sense, I relocated Bill's resume to the No pile. Now, this kind of investigation might seem creepy-stalkerish even. But a prospective employer would be negligent not to take advantage of these readily available tools. If used prudently, they can provide unique inSight into a candidate's skills, mind-set, and work style- qualities that bear directly on potential job performance. As a hiring manager, you're looking for an employee, not a drinking buddy. So focus on details relevant to the prospective job: not what music they like, who they voted for, or what they do-and with whom-on Saturday night.

Similarly, as an applicant, recognize that your online actions are a matter of public record that can be used for, or against, you. Tread carefully online and don't assume that you are anonymous. Often, you're not.

Fortunately, you can participate in the online social free-for-all without exposing yourself unduly. Social media maven Christopher Null Jus compiled a collection of privacy tips in '·How to Avoid Facebook and Twitter Disasters"(see page 97). If you want to Stay reasonably private and insulate yourself
from snoopy bosses, both current and pro
spective, follow Null's advice.

And while you're at it, please don't drink and drive.

Steve Fox is editorial director of PC World

This article taken from PC World magazine, AUGUST 2009

Ulasan: Artikel di atas menggambarkan kepada kita bahawa peri pentingnya menjaga tingkah laku kita walaupun di mana sahaja…walaupun internet diistilahkan sebagai dunia maya, namun segala tindak tanduk kita adalah tidak terlepas daripada mengamalkan kehidupan sebagai seorang Islam. Seperti kata Ust Ismail Mustari, "Seorang muslim seharusnya berwajah dengan satu wajah sahaja dan identitinya tidak keliru"

Laman- laman sosial seperti Facebook, Friendster, MySpace, Twitter dan sebagainya sememangnya tidak asing lagi bagi warga bumi. Semuanya ada 'pro' dan 'cont' yang tersendiri. Walaubagaimanapun semuanya bergantung kepada cara penggunaan kita. Jikalau kita menggunakan dengan tujuan untuk mengeratkan silaturahim antara kawan- kawan, itu sememangnya langkah yang bijak kerana kita telah menyediakan salah satu cara untuk mengelakkan terputusnya hubungan walaupun di mana kawan kita berada.

Sebaliknya penggunaan yang tidak mengikut lunas- lunas Islam (cth: meletakkan gambar yg tidak menutup aurat) adalah seperti mendedahkan aib diri sendiri. Sedangkan di dalam Islam, kita dinasihatkan untuk menjaga aib sahabat kita apatah lagi aib sendiri.

Mungkin disebabkan pengguna ingin 'mengekpresikan' diri mereka dengan menggunakan laman- laman sosial sebegini sehingga mereka lupa batas- batas ketimuran. Sehingga semua hilang rasa malu untuk melakukan perkara tidak baik atas dasar ekspresi diri….meletakkan gambar berdua-duan dengan bukan muhrim sudah menjadi perkara biasa. Malah ada yang berbangga ke kelab- kelab malam (clubbing) sambil meminum air kencing syaitan meletakkan sewenang- wenangnya gambar mereka di dalam profil laman sosial mereka…

Iktibarnya kita seharusnya menjaga aib diri sendiri dengan tidak meletakkan gambar/video yang boleh menjatuhkan martabat keintelektualan kita di laman sosial…begitu juga gambar/video rakan-rakan kita yang kita rasa tidak sepatutnya menjadi tatapan umum. Ini kerana setiap orang sememangnya tidak boleh lari dari kesalahan. Hanya dia dan sahabat terdekat sahaja yang tahu kelemahan setiap orang.

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