With our social networking and recruiting worlds colliding between candidates, friends, colleagues and family one begins to wonder… Where should the social boundary be?

For those that know me, I speak my mind pretty freely and it’s definitely not for everyone. Yes, that’s right folks… I actually have my own mind and opinion that sometimes people don’t agree with or every now and then, it just doesn’t sit very well. Being able to speak my mind and have my own voice is important to me. It does beg the question, where do social boundaries for recruiting, friends, family and colleagues begin and end? Do I spend the rest of my social life putting up filters and letting some people see everything and some people see almost nothing? Don’t get me wrong, nothing I say or do are things I would not say or do in front of my mother or grandmother, but if there is something I want to talk about freely amongst people, should I require a filter? If I have a genuine passion or opinion, should I change my thought process and watch what I say so it’s appropriate for all audiences? My feeling is absolutely not, I should be able to be me all while being conscious on the effect it may have on others. What I decided… instead of creating things I feel I can do, I created things I will not do. On the top 3 networks, here’s just some of my personal Social Boundaries…


1. I will not accept candidates on my personal Facebook page. Now Page they can “like” is another story. All the candidates in the world can be on it if I should ever decide to start one.

2. I will not accept a colleague that I do not have a personal relationship with or have never had a verbal conversation with on my Facebook page. They don’t know me, and some things are better left unknown. Besides, they don’t need to be poking around my page anyway. They can always add me on LinkedIn.

3. I do not post any personal status about work on my Facebook page….Well, unless I am on the phone with Darth Vader breathing into the phone at 8am. Then I might make a joke… But absolutely, no venting. Sometimes I might say something and people might think it’s about someone in particular, but hey, that’s their issue, not mine.

4. I will not accept my company as my friend. I am sorry. I love who I work for, but I draw the line at being friends. I will “Like” my company, but no, no noooooo accepting as a friend!


1. I will not tweet unless I feel like it. I am a very random Twitter user. Sometimes quotes, sometimes information, sometimes to speak my mind. I will not tailor my thoughts to an audience.

2. I will not post anything to do with or about a client or meeting I am attending.

3. I will not follow you just because you follow me.

4. I will not tell you my every move. Who really cares anyway?


1. I will not accept you just because you would like to connect. I am a purpose networker. Will you serve a purpose for me and my network or will I serve a purpose for you? I will accept all colleagues on LinkedIn, fellow recruiters, people in Marketing, Social Media, Technology, Staffing & Recruiting and people I just find interesting. Relevant network is the name of the game for me.

2. I will not cringe if I know you or you are in the industry and you send me the generic “I’d like to add you to my network” request. It’s OK. We’re all short on time. I won’t think any less of you. Who am I to judge?

3. I will not recommend you if I do not know you.

4. I will not recommend you if I know you and have not worked closely with you.

Well, that’s a big part of my list…Some of what I wrote you might have laughed at, but in all seriousness, you have to set social boundaries or they all just start to blur together. There are days when I feel “Socially Burnt”. I can’t check-in on FourSquare and I just can’t bring myself to scroll through the 100 status updates waiting for me on my Droid.

Figure out your rules, boundaries and you will be Socially Successful. Always remember, people want the authentic you. Don’t be afraid to be you and set boundaries at the same time. It was easier for me to determine what I won’t do vs. what I will do.

Live Socially Authentic!

Views: 413

Comment by Noel Cocca on June 24, 2010 at 12:44pm
Great post. I dont think enough of the newer social networkers pay attention to how easy it is to step over lines! Thank you for this!


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