Once, I had an awkward conversation with one of my professional contacts who happens to be one of my “facebook” friends (he invited me, I couldn’t refuse). We were talking about Facebook, and he commented on my picture. I changed it a few days before our meeting, and he noticed it. He asked me why I made that change, and I told him I did it because I found a way to limit the access to my public profile. He also asked why I didn’t want my profile to be seen by everyone, and I replied that when I subscribed to FB, I had many pokes and invitations to be friends with total strangers, so I picked a picture where you can barely see me. This is when he had this surprising reaction. “Oh, nobody has ever done that with me on FB” he said. He seemed serious when he told me this, so I was pinching myself not to laugh at him.
I didn’t expect that from a guy who’s 47, married, CEO, and physically pfffff.
Then, weeks later, one of my coworkers had to assist to one of his conferences. She told me there were in the crowd people (mostly old men) who were literally open-mouthed of admiration during his whole speech. She also said that she had the occasion to talk to them, and one replied he was trying to follow every of his speeches everywhere. In other words, my contact has groupies (except that he doesn’t fuck them- but I’m not sure ). Maybe he expected to have the same halo he has in the professional world on FB. But I’ve noticed that on FB, some social barriers seem to disappear, except if you’re a real star. On FB, I’m not a journalist. One of my friends, who works for the World Health Organization and lectures around the globe, is just D. on FB, and not his profession. I told him about my contact conversation, and he said that this is the attitude of someone who can’t draw a line between his private and professional life.
It’s curious that in one sentence, you can pretty much summarize a person.
So, do you draw easily a line between your private and professional life?