Becoming friends with your coworkers can have numerous positive effects, including more successful teams and an improved office culture. Grabbing the occasional happy hour after work with coworkers can also add positivity to your work. Still, while there are a number of benefits to cultivating friendships with your coworkers, there are a few things you should consider before accepting a friend request from a coworker. Here they are, from Forbes:
Potentially damaging photos/status updates. You’ve probably heard horror stories about people who have been fired or otherwise suffered negative consequences because of sloppy photos shared on social media. In addition to those, however, a passionate political rant or even just a minor complaint about your job could land you in hot water if someone you work with sees it. This cuts both ways – it might be harder to get along with your coworker if you find out that they are on the complete opposite side of the political spectrum than you are.
Accusations of favoritism. If you’re friends with your boss on Facebook and you share a common interest that you frequently chat about, like, etc., a coworker may interpret any future career gains by you under that boss as favoritism, even if you’ve earned those gains.
Timeline woes. Accepting friend requests from coworkers likely means having to clean up your old posts and photos, as well as censoring your future ones. Other unforeseen effects might also be invitations to annoying Facebook games, photo spam of coworkers’ vacations, or other content you may not want to see on your timeline.