UPDATE: Paull Young and Jeremy Pepper have both contributed to this meme, all of us independently of each other but scarily (or as Paull would say, as another example of Twitternicity) all at the same time.
My good friend Allan Jenkins has long maintained that your reputation is increasingly dependent upon what comes up when someone Google’s you.
One of the biggest ‘shock horror’ moments that has come out of the workshops I’ve been running recently — in cahoots with Alex and Justine, two of the fine folk from Melcrum — has been when I have emphasised that business communicators have a responsibility to not only manage the online reputation of their employers, but also themselves.
It comes as a shock to folks when they google themselves and either nothing comes up, or something about them that they didn’t write themselves.
Hey everyone: wake up! Your future employers, your future business partners, your future romantic partners… ALL of them are googling you! If YOU don’t manage what shows up then you are at the mercy of what others say about you.
So, then what is the best way of managing your reputation?
Simple: start a blog.
Show your thought leadership, your intelligence, your humanity, your humour, your insights, your wisdom, your passion, your enthusiasm, your personality, your creativity, your energy, your self via your blog. Because in a few months’ time your next employer, partner, etc., WILL google you. Trust me on this.
If nothing of importance or intelligence comes up then any future employer, partner, etc., will conclude that you have nothing to say, that you are a ‘vanilla’ communicator (i.e. little or no flavour other than the basic flavour that everyone has). But if you let them see that you DO have insight, wisdom, intelligence, et al., then your prospects are immediately better than others who may be in competition with you for that role, partner, business opportunity…
Oh, and speaking of my mate Allan, imagine my surprise when
I skimmed read one of my uni email inboxes and saw this:
Emeritus Professor, eh? Blimey, no wonder he’s been quiet these last few months!!
Currently listening to: Led Zeppelin – Remasters [UK] Disc 2 – Achilles Last Stand