A recent survey by security protection company AVG reported that one in four young adults are friends with their bosses on Facebook, according to a recent article in Mashable. AVG surveyed 4,400 people in 11 countries, with the U.S. and Italy topping the list of users most likely to friend their bosses.
Not only that, but on average, about 59 percent of U.S. Facebook users in the 18-25 age bracket do not restrict content from their co-workers.
The world is in an era of over-share. With the Internet and social media, nothing seems to be off-limits and employers are well aware of that. It’s not unusual for employers to run a quick social media search on potential employees as part of a background check. A picture of a keg-stand at a wild party is not the sort of image anyone serious about his or her career would want their boss to see.
Yet, the Millenial generation (i.e. most students at WTAMU) does not seem to share the same concerns about Internet privacy with their older counterparts. We grew up with social media, so it makes sense to not see “friending the boss” as a big deal. We work differently than “Generation-Xers” and “Baby Boomers” and we even have different expectations in the workplace in regards to advancement and how we prefer to communicate.
Older generations are having trouble communicating with “Millenials” because of this generation gap, according to a study by Speakeasy, a communications development and coaching firm. To bridge this gap, your boss may even friend you.
Being friends with the boss may help foster a positive work environment…until the boss ticks you off. AVG’s findings reveal that one in eight Millenial Facebook users have posted abusive content about their employers.
In an effort to “be open and real,” Millenial users are opening a can of worms with every Facebook post. Keep in mind that even deleted posts on Facebook stay on their servers for years. It wouldn’t be ideal for a Facebook post you made in college come back to haunt you twenty years from now.
We’re in the formative years of our lives right now. We’re in school so we can get a good job. Yes, social media is becoming more intertwined with real life, but be smart about it. If you want to friend your boss, more power to you, but you had better make sure that your Facebook profile is completely sanitized of questionable photos, expletives, and kegger mentions.