Katy Perry has it wrong

In Katy Perry’s recent #1 hit single Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.) there is one of her lyrics that really stuck out to me. It really stuck out because it was completely wrong.

In the midst of waking up the morning after a drunken party she sings, “pictures of last night ended up online, I’m screwed.  Oh well!

I think most of us have heard about the damage pictures, videos and other content that shows us in a “less than ideal” light can do (socially, but especially professionally). If for some reason you haven’t heard this message before, LISTEN UP (and even if you have heard it, a reminder never hurts).

Expect that anything that is posted online about you will end up in the hands of those that you do business with. It could be a potential new boss that you are interviewing with, a prospective client that you are selling to, or a co-worker that doesn’t like you for some reason and is looking for dirt.

This rule also applies to things that may have happened back in college.  Many people just think about the pictures/videos/posts that have surfaced since graduation. This is a mistake. Even though you may be “all grown up” and mature now, there is no way that picture of you doing a keg stand in Cancun during spring break your senior year can help get you promoted or further your career. Go back into your Facebook/MySpace (for those who still use it)/Twitter/Blog accounts and make sure they are as squeaky clean.  One simple rule is that any picture that has you (and/or a bunch of people around you) holding an alcoholic beverage of any kind shouldn’t have you tagged in it.

I have heard more stories than I care to admit  where someone was going to get hired and after an internet search by the firm they were interviewing with they were no longer a candidate (or something similar to that).

Katy Perry’s “oh well” attitude in the lyrics is NOT the mentality we should be taking.  Monitor pictures people tag you in on Facebook (and un-tag yourself), if someone posts something on your wall that is inappropriate, take the post down. If someone writes something bad about you in a forum or article, contact the author and ask for the opportunity to comment/respond.  If they won’t give you the chance, use any forum or outlet you have to respond yourself.

All that said, “Last Friday Night” is still a pretty catchy song that I sing along to whenever it comes on the radio.

By no means am I saying that we shouldn’t enjoy ourselves (on Fridays or any other day of the week), I just encourage you to remember to keep on eye on how you are portrayed online; it may not be the impression you want people to have of you.

Mr. Biz, OUT!


About Young Professional's Edge (YP Edge)

Aaron McDaniel is a corporate manager, entrepreneur, author, public speaker and community leader. Aaron has held numerous management roles at a Fortune 500 company, being appointed Regional Vice President at the age of 27, and is the founder of multiple entrepreneurial ventures. He is also the author of the book, The Young Professional's Guide to the Working World (http://www.amazon.com/Young-Professionals-Guide-Working-World/dp/1601632428). Aaron instructed a highly rated student-led course on leadership at UC Berkeley’s Haas Undergraduate School of Business and has a book, The Young Professional's Guide to the Working World: Savvy Strategies to Get In, Get Ahead, and Rise to the Top, due to be out later this year. Aaron offers advice that helps young professionals build the foundation for a successful career. Visit his blog, http://www.ypedge.com to learn more.

Posted on September 19, 2011, in Solid Advice and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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