Proper Facebook Etiquette

#1963* a simple friend thing

Friday 20th May, 2011

Dear Mariann,
I listened to you on BBCYork and want to ask a question. Do you think I should OK my managers friend request? I work in a mostly girl estate agents and my workmates have not had a request. I’m not into him (and he is married anyway) but he knows I don’t have a BF and I don’t k now if his request is just a simple friend thing. What do you advise?
From Jenny in reply to post #362 extreme testosterone driven lusts.

You see Jenny this isn’t an unusual problem. One might even say, not a problem at all come promotion and any other awkward mediation that requires less restriction and more movement on the work front. Not that I am suggesting for a second that either he or you are that way inclined. Although you did.

Here’s a sequence of for you; red lorry, yellow lorry; red lorry, yellow lorry; red lorry… What comes next? Precisely right: Yellow. Just not after two shots of tequila. Why the tongue twister? Because human relationships whilst mundane at times – and they always are via any form of work hierarchy – also have an element of the obvious about them. You didn’t have to think too hard to arrive at your statement of ‘I’m not into him’. Rightly not. Why should you be. It’s not like he has a dominant gene status; that requires height and not being an estate agent. I’ve no idea whether your boss is short or not, but his actions reflect the sensibility of a Yorkshire Terrier; yap at anything, nip at your ankles, highly strung and with a bit a complex.

The longevity of your working relations are at stake here. Not just between yourself and your boss, but amongst the other ‘girls’ in the office. What if they were to find out that you had friended Mr Terrier? We don’t want you set upon by the jealous impulses of other females in the pack. And anway, I don’t like workplace issues. I’ve also been fascinated by all that research that states what high % proportion of people meet their spouses at work, then same said report and a significantly higher proportion cheat on their spouse at work. So much the better for not being friends on Facebook then.

In America they’re more familiar with this LinkedIn jazz. Or, as a colleague of mine crudely put it, ‘Facebook for work people’. Well, yes (but no really), but OK then if you like. So deny your bosses friend request, but do request him back via LinkedIn. Then make out you’ve a whole new marketing agenda cached into ‘work’ networks via LinkedIn and ‘social’ networks via Facebook. This should stack the digital scales in your favour.

There are self-help books that you could also turn to. This column – obviously – being one carrier of such sentiment and other titles such as Screw your boss; screw you, as an up close description of that moment in the acceleration of Estate Agent relations when, for every house that you sell, your boss requires another celebratory fumble in the office broom cupboard. In short, friend if you dare.

*Those of you astute enough to have noticed may see that there’s a leap from 300s to 900s. This is because the archive of ‘old’ posts is now secure – so that’s an extra 600 posts to search through. Enjoy readers.

2 Responses to “#1963* a simple friend thing”

  1. I want to start a website and I have no idea how. It has to be free and relatively simple, and I want other people to be able to comment on articles/pictures. Any suggestions?.

  2. An Unnerved Intern says:

    Okay so I’m due to start an internship in the City pretty soon and the company I’m going to be working for has set up a lovely little Facebook group (how kind), which is fine. However, some of the people I’m going to be working with are starting to add me (including one of the Grad Recruitment Managers). What do I do? Maybe I’m over thinking this. But I don’t want to become one of these horror stories when people mix work with Facebook. I don’t think I’d be putting anything “bad” on there, but who knows when I’ve had a stressful day at the office, one too many and an iPhone in hand loaded with Facebook. Hmm.

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