So this week, I made a rather large faux pas when it comes to work. This mishap was definitely worse than my previous blunders featured here. I blame LinkedIn entirely…
For the past five years, I’ve been helping proofread international Master students’ dissertations over the summer months. It’s something I enjoy doing, and allows me to learn about fast vs. sustainable slow fashion, androgynous trends, and the latest advances in biotechnology that are revolutionising the traditional manufacturing methods.
Of course, I’m compensated for my time, but that’s not the reason I give up my evenings and weekends around my full-time job. Helping a student reach their full potential – despite the fact they may not have native level English – makes it worthwhile. Many of us take it for granted that English comes so naturally, when in reality, it’s full of inconsistencies and baffling minefields for those taking it on as a second (or even third) tongue.
As I thought it was time to update this skill on LinkedIn, I added the following to my profile, thinking that this would be a good way of receiving recommendations for any future inquiries:
The next morning, I woke up to about 15 messages congratulating me on the new job. Obviously, this was a bit awkward given that I just do this in my spare time. Some were generic “Congrats on the new gig!”, whereas others were lovely personalised messages from previous colleagues that I’ve not heard from in a while. I then began receiving even more worrying messages from current co-workers, asking me if I’d left my current workplace – to which I replied rather too emphatically “No! I’m still here…”.
My update had clearly announced itself to everyone as a new role, despite the fact my profile still said that I worked with my present employer. To make things worse, some thought that I now worked for the newspaper The Independent.
Needless to say, I had some explaining to do when I went to work on Monday morning. Even more horrifying was that some of my colleagues had been taking screenshots of the email notification, and sending them on to my boss with question marks.
So, for the record, I’m still working as a conference producer. I may not bother with LinkedIn again, though. What a kerfuffle.