These experts say that it all comes down to image and the persona an individual projects.
Teryl Schroenn, CEO at Accsys, believes with the increase in innovative technology solutions and constant connectivity, there are challenges to maintaining a healthy work/life balance. However, it should not be seen as hypocritical to have a work persona and a personal one.
“Very few of us behave in the same way in all of our relationships. Your parents, your spouse, your children, siblings and friends probably see different sides of you, as do your boss and colleagues,”
In terms of social networking, Schroenn asks whether it is advisable to share links of sites or add colleagues as friends. The point she raises is that social networks, by definition, blur the lines of personal privacy. “I suppose you need to decide whether your boss needs to know what you did over the weekend. Personal privacy is another very blurred line, because we are sharing information with the Internet that we never used to tell our best friends.”
Schroenn suggests that this does not mean genuine feeling and reality is outlawed in the workplace, only that people need to be aware. “Some climb the ladder of success quickly, irrespective of what they have done or not done… the majority of us have to build up a positive performance history and professional image to rise through the ranks,” she says.
Off line and from a physical appearance point of view, Shroenn believes it is important to make a distinction between business wear and informal dress.
It is a little like "dress for the job you want, and not the one you have". Creating a genuine, professional business personality takes hard work and dedication to the job. So the answer is that the lines are a little blurred, but remember that there is one!
Liza du Plessis
Liza du Plessis