An executive at gas exploration firm BG Group is taking his former employer to court in the UK for forcing him out of his job because of his LinkedIn account, reports Christopher Williams at The Telegraph.John Flexman had uploaded his CV onto his LinkedIn profile and checked the box that denotes an interest in “career opportunities.” His bosses didn’t take too kindly to that, and while he was on vacation his manager ordered him to remove his CV.
Then, he was accused of “inappropriate use of social media” and called into a disciplinary meeting. BG Group says that it has a policy against checking that box. The company also told him that he had to remove all information that involved BG Group from his profile, except for job titles and dates.
The dispute between Flexman and his bosses caused a ton of internal strife, and led to his resignation. Now he’s suing the company for “hundreds of thousands of pounds,” reports Williams. The gig at BG Group was earning Flexman a salary of £68,000 (about $105,000).
So, how are workers supposed to be using LinkedIn, anyway? As the social network becomes more popular, it’s getting increased attention from employers, which means that many companies now have policies regarding LinkedIn. This guy’s episode is a strange one, but it shows that you need to know your company’s policies, especially as the workplace becomes increasingly affected by the rise of social.
At the vast majority of companies, there’s nothing wrong with having profiles on social networks. But you always have to be careful about what you put online — not just what you post on status updates, but what company information you put out there for folks to see as well.
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