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How to navigate the online world to effectively unlock opportunity

Start off by connecting with a trusted community, and then with peers, mentors and industry experts

When engaging on social media and online platforms, it’s important to practice digital etiquette and mindful interaction.
When engaging on social media and online platforms, it’s important to practice digital etiquette and mindful interaction. (iStockphoto)

The digital age has redefined the boundaries of human interaction, transforming the way we connect, share, and build relationships. And to navigate this landscape with confidence, authenticity is our compass. Be it forging meaningful connections, securing dream opportunities, or showcasing unique content—the possibilities are truly endless when we take on the digital world with genuine intent and self-assurance. The good news is that online platforms are working to make their offerings safer so we can steer clear of unwanted online encounters and take charge of our digital journey.

Here are five tips that will help you navigate the online world with trust, safety, and credibility:

Tap into trusted community

Social media and online networking platforms can offer a sense of familiarity when you connect with people you already know.

Just as you would seek solace in a close-knit community or finding a warm, welcoming gathering of friends, start by reaching out to your trusted circle—friends, classmates, and colleagues.

They can serve as your anchor, providing a safe space where you can express yourself freely and share experiences for others to learn. By building on these connections, you’ll gradually expand your network and discover like-minded individuals who understand your outlook, values, and aspirations.

Reflect authenticity

In a digital landscape brimming with opportunities, we want to make authentic connections. Think of online networks as a vibrant marketplace bustling with diverse vendors and offerings. Take the time to verify profiles and assess authenticity, much like carefully choosing whom to trust when exploring a busy market. Look for updated profiles with regular engagement and shared connections.

To create an authentic online presence, be sure to reflect your true self in your profile. For an extra layer of credibility and assurance, verify your identity. When you show that you are the real you, you can more confidently find the professional opportunities that matter to you and your community. It is entirely possible that people who come across your profile are asking similar questions of authenticity. So start with yourself and verify your profile.

Strengthen security

One effective way to bolster the security of your online accounts is by enabling two-factor authentication. This extra layer of security requires you to provide a second form of verification, typically a unique code sent to your mobile device, in addition to your password.

By activating 2FA, you significantly reduce the risk of anyone gaining unauthorized access to your accounts, even if your password is compromised. It’s like adding a sturdy lock to your digital front door, ensuring that only you can gain entry. Take the time to enable this feature on your social media and other online platforms to safeguard your personal information and maintain peace of mind.

Also read: Are companies lagging when it comes to online security?

Uphold digital etiquette

When engaging on social media and online platforms, it’s important to practice digital etiquette and mindful interaction. Treat your online conversations as you would treat face-to-face discussions—with respect and consideration for others. Think of it as participating in a virtual community where kindness, empathy, and understanding foster positive connections.

Be mindful of your language, tone, and the impact your words may have on others. Avoid engaging in online conflicts or sharing inflammatory content that may escalate tensions. Instead, aim to contribute constructively to conversations, offering valuable insights, support, or encouragement. By fostering a positive online environment, you not only build meaningful, credible connections but also inspire others to do the same.

Foster relationships

Navigating the intricacies of social media can feel overwhelming, especially when it comes to seeking guidance or assistance. Connect with peers, mentors, and industry experts who can serve as mentors on your digital journey. Reach out to former colleagues, respected professionals, or senior members in your field of interest.

For an extra layer of assurance, seek out profiles that are verified. By engaging in meaningful conversations and respectfully seeking help, you tap into the wealth of knowledge and experience within your extended network. Remember, the digital landscape is teeming with individuals eager to share their insights and offer support, so don’t hesitate to reach out and discover the invaluable wisdom they have to offer.

Embrace the interconnected world, forge meaningful connections, share your unique voice, and let the online realm become a space where you thrive, learn, and grow. Together, we can shape a safer and more vibrant digital community built on trust.

Ashutosh Gupta is India country manager at LinkedIn.

Also read: Start networking: create an intricately connected web of strong and successful women



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