If you are currently thinking of creating a blog, there are some factors you need to consider before you start. Are you planning on blogging as a hobby or will you make it your full-time job? Will the subject(s) of the blog address issues related to your full-time employment? There are additional factors to consider if you are working another job in addition to blogging. The key for any blog is to make sure you attract an ample number of readers. However, you also need to respect the regulations deemed necessary by your employer. Here are some tips to help maintain professionalism in your blog, without sacrificing the concerns of your employer. In addition, I’ve added some general blogging tips to maintain readership and professionalism, on your part. By following these tips, your blog is certain to be a useful resource for your readers!
First Things First: Maintaining Employer Confidentiality
If you do currently work for a company or organization, here are some tips to help you stay in line with employer regulations:
Read over your employee hand book to find out rules/regulations: Most companies have some sort of guidebook regarding use of company information outside the office. For example: If you are planning on creating a financial blog, based on your experience working for (let’s say) JP Morgan, look over the company’s employee handbook. You may or may not be able to use specific information and knowledge gained from your work there. NEVER disclose company sensitive information. The internet is a tool with no boundaries, and you would be surprised how easily your employer/boss may stumble across your blog.
Use Pseudonyms: Once you get the company-sensitive information issue sorted out, make sure you use pseudonyms for people you discuss or even issues you write about. If you are going to talk about how John Smith really ticked you off at the office today, you better call John Smith something like Bobby Woodpecker instead. Again, using people’s names and information without their permission can get you fired. Even worse, talking about this publicly (over the internet) can help you gain unnecessary, very angry enemies. Save your job and your reputation by using pseudonyms.
Maintaining Professionalism in Your Blog
Double check statistics! Regardless of the subject you are writing about, whether it’s on politics, financial information, or even biology, check your information and statistics from MULTIPLE SOURCES. This helps you to maintain consistency and authenticity in your blog. You don’t want to be one of those blogs that appears to be a stream of conscious throw-up of words on a page. Rather, you want It to be a reliable, professional source for your readers!
Hyperlink where necessary: In order to give your readers more information, provide them with hyperlinks throughout the text. If there is something you cannot explain without plagiarizing, just give your readers the link!
Using photos: When using photos in your blog, make sure you are rightfully allowed to them. You may have to attribute the photo back to its original source, or you can do an advanced search on Google Images. The advanced search gives you the option to find photos available for free commercial use.
Happy blogging to all of you!