This month, we shared a very interesting story from a LinkedIn user who highlighted a growing epidemic.

We’ve all had ‘those friends’ on Facebook who continuously rant via their statuses, insult their ‘followers’ and are generally argumentative and unpleasant.

I personally nicknamed this behaviour ‘civilian politician’ as these people seem to genuinely believe that their Facebook friends are in fact their fans and followers, speak down to them and continuously try and create controversy AKA attention.

These people are quite draining, and if they’re not deleted altogether, they’re often un-followed so that we don’t have to cringe every time they openly embarrass themselves again with their delusional self-inflated egos.

We’ve blogged before about how Facebook behaviour was starting to rear its ugly head on LinkedIn, in the form of foul language and inappropriate profile photos; now the ‘civilian politician’ behaviour seems to be beginning to infiltrate the LinkedIn community via unnecessary and unhelpful comments on posts and the continuous ‘Look at me, look at me!’ syndrome.

So, where are the boundaries in social media? It’s great to stand out, be unique and attract attention, but it has to be for the right reasons when you’re using professional platforms such as LinkedIn. Remember, people are always watching and mentally storing you as a possible professional to work with as and when they need your services.

If you begin posting negative, inappropriate, unhelpful and to be blunt, ‘bitchy’ comments, you will quickly be deleted and not taken seriously. No one wants to work with someone who behaves like this.

Last year, an owner of a less mainstream London Fashion Week added me on Facebook and I was engaged by their imagery, behind the scenes footage and generally supported their start-up process, UNTIL this user actually posted a status naming and shaming (and tagging) a client who had told them they had liked their page but in fact had not. I’ve never witnessed anyone so passive-aggressively and single handedly destroying their business and reputation in a matter of seconds. Needless to say, they were deleted and have never been seen or heard from since.

I certainly would not do business with someone like that, and I’m sure the majority of people would not. Save the attitude for when you’re the next Alan Sugar or Kirsty Allsop; people won’t like you for it or feel inspired to do business with you, but at least you could back up that negative attitude and behaviour with experienced business success. Remember, a lot of people do business with people they like; being yourself is important, but so is the way you conduct yourself.



Nathanial Bibby is the Founder of LinkedIn marketing agency Bibby Consulting Group, 2x winner at the Social Media Marketing Awards for Best Use of LinkedIn 2019-2020. Nathanial is the creator and host of LinkedIn Heroes, Monday Night Live & The Nathanial Bibby Podcast. The Social Media Marketing Institute ranked him #1 on the Top 20 LinkedIn Experts in the Asia Pacific region.