If your office intranet allows you to create a profile, I suggest you fill it in as as well as you can.
Just like in social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn, profiles are usually the starting point of connections in an intranet.
This blog post explores why.
Your intranet profile shows others what you look like
Displaying user photos is usually a matter for debate on intranets. Some organizations don’t like them, because photos display your gender and ethnic background, among others. There are those who argue that this can lead to different types of discrimination. If this is the case in your organization, then you’ve got bigger problems than your intranet!
If you are allowed to post a profile photo, it’s actually a good opportunity to let your colleagues know what you look like. This means they’ll recognize you even before they ever meet you face to face, something that could be handy in big organizations, or those with remote offices. Showing your face eliminates anonymity. Plus, if you use a pleasant photo of you, which I hope you do, it will help break the ice with other employees you haven’t met yet.
Your profile lets others know how to contact you
At the very least, intranet user profiles provide contact information. Aside from telephone numbers, email address, and snail mail address, you may want to let other users know how to connect with you outside the office, such as in social networking sites. If you only connect with real-life friends on Facebook, there’s nothing wrong with sharing the link to your LinkedIn profile.
Your intranet profile lets others know what you’re good at
Some intranets allow users to post something like a resume on their profile. This is great, if you’re open to collaborating with others in your company. Upload slideshows you’ve made, video clips of your speeches, and other work-related things you’re most proud of. Seeing you in action is much more effective than writing a list of your accomplishments.
Your intranet profile shows your human side
If you’re able, post some personal stuff on your intranet profile — as much as you’re comfortable. You may not want to tell everyone where you live, or show them pictures of your vacation (or maybe you do, depending on the culture in your company). But you can talk about your hobbies, favorite movies and music, and other passions you have outside the office. This is a good way for others to find areas of common interest with you, which would make interacting with them much easier.
Your intranet profile allows other users to find you
Intranet profiles are searchable, so a well filled-in profile will help your colleagues find you. Maybe there’s a job opening in another department that you don’t know about yet, and they’re looking for in-house talent to fill the vacancy, wouldn’t you want your name to pop up when they search the intranet for specific skills and expertise?
How’s Your Profile?
These are only some of the reasons your intranet user profile should be as complete as possible. Can you think of any more?
How does your current profile measure up? Which elements have you left out? Why?