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A few weeks ago I was speaking to some of my contractors about social media. One of my competitors has recently started to mandate what they put on their LinkedIn profile when they are doing a contract for them.

More recently, I was having a one-to-one with a staff member and we talked about how there is a benefit to the business if they create a LinkedIn profile and like & share our posts.

It’s new territory for everyone. Things are changing so quickly that companies are often scrambling to keep up.

So… should you mandate that an employee must update their employment to show them now working at your company?

Should you have a policy that asks employees to create a LinkedIn profile if they don’t have one?

What about mandating that they like and share posts? Even more broadly – what about requiring them to be active on social media when the job doesn’t really require it? (My staff are Lean consultants, not social media marketers).

As I navigate these new issues I can’t help but think it’s not really any of my business. At best, all I can ask is that they don’t post anything on any social media platform that is likely to bring the firm into disrepute.

That’s it.

Let me explain why… Social Media works on the basis of connecting with people you’ve met throughout your life. It’s not full of people you only met in a business capacity whilst working for your current company. It’s your personal account. It’s about you. And you are so much more than the current business you are working for.

It’s great if you want to be an ambassador for your current company, but no company should try and force you to be one.

I think the only exception is that if the business has their own social media accounts and they ask you to manage them – but then that’s not your account, is it?

Back to the 2 examples at the beginning of the post. Should a company mandate what people put on their LinkedIn profile when they are doing a contract for them? Nope.

Should I make a staff member to create a LinkedIn profile and like & share our posts?

Definitely not.

If they want to – that’s great. If they don’t want to – that’s great too.

What do you think?

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