What strategic authenticity really means

Poised to share your gastrointestinal woes on LinkedIn? Think again. Still, there are ways to humanize your iconic self for audience engagement—without putting people off their lunch.

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When the subject at hand is about creating content and standing out online, the conversation usually turns to “authenticity.”

The dictionary says “authentic” means “true and accurate, made to be or look just like an original.”

Is there a single day when you represent yourself on the web in a “true and accurate” way? Of course not. Most people promote their shiny best selves.

Here’s the business case for being strategically authentic.

The amount that people share on the web varies greatly from the “full meal deal,” which includes addictions, neuroses and breakups, to the “stoic plan,” which contains scant personal information.

The amount of intimate info we share isn’t just a reflection of our personality; it also reflects who we want to be and the story we want to tell about ourselves.

On a personal level, it can be fun to blow off steam online. From a business standpoint, these details are also being catalogued away as part of our personal brand, and it may become part of what people think about our employer.

How much is too much?

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