Dilemmas with Friends on Social Media

Social Media is a great tool!  You can connect with people all over the world.  However, as with all tools, you have to ensure that you are using them to your best advantage.

I get asked frequently how to handle “Friend Requests” on Facebook.  The friend terminology is sort of a loose term.  Friend on what level?

In order to answer that, you need to understand why you have a platform on Social Media.  Specifically in today’s blog post we will discuss Facebook and the relationship with requests to be connected.  Once you have determined what your platform is and why you have it, you can move on to answer other questions, but without knowing this, you are going to be limited at knowing how to effectively address them.

Here are some questions to help you figure out that dilemma of adding someone to your network.

  • Is the request you received from someone you know?
  • If so, do you want to interact with them?  Do you want to know what is going on in their lives?  Do you want them to know what is going on in your life?
  • If not, do you have mutual friends?
  • If not, are they someone who may have connections to others that you wish to interact with?
  • If not, are they a competitor?
  • Is the request SPAM or solicitation that you don’t want?
  • Do they work for a company that you want to be connected to?
  • Are they well known in the community as someone who serves and is giving and you would like to know?
  • Do they have a profile picture or are they hiding and not being honest about who they are?
  • Do you share mutual interests?
  • Were you referred to them?

Some of these things are hard to answer before you have accepted the friend request.  However, you can always check out LinkedIn and even Google them to see what comes up.  You can learn a lot about someone online.

Additionally, I don’t think you should be afraid to reach out and say “Hey, Thanks for the connection. I apologize, but I don’t recognize your name or picture.  Can you tell me where we met?  Or how you know me?  If you don’t mind me asking, what is your reason for connecting?”

How someone responds or doesn’t respond tells you a lot about their request too!  Make sure that the friends you connect with support your platform and reason for using Social Media, particularly Facebook and you will ensure your interactions are fun, supportive and beneficial.

Do you have other questions you think are good ones to ask yourself when reviewing accepting a “Friend Request”?

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