As an architect & humanitarian, I lead a creative life with impact, by delivering comfort & safety through human-centered design solutions.

Through my writings on these subjects, I hope to inspire confidence in you along the way; through your life & career, or in your creative projects.

Let's connect to continue the conversation & collaborate on great projects... with a little bit of fun & a whole lot of social impact.



Managing Your Online Presence

Managing Your Online Presence

This presentation was given to college students & recent graduates who attended the 9th Annual Lebanese Collegiate Network Convention at UCLA in March 2016. It focused on strategies to manage their online presence in today's highly connected world, specifically as they prepare to enter their professional careers. 


  1. Introduction
  2. Why social media?
  3. Platforms
  4. Protecting your online reputation?
  5. Pros & Cons
  6. Privacy
  7. Strategic action plan for positive online presence
    1. Inventory your resources
    2. Inventory your online presence
    3. Define your brand
    4. Build your network
    5. Have fun

Click HERE for full PREZI video.

1. Introduction

We’re sisters in different fields (architecture & marketing) & generations (Gen-X & Millennial), bringing the diversity of perspectives to this presentation to appeal to students, recent grads, & those already in the workforce. The principals we’ll discuss are applicable to anyone who has an online footprint. This doesn’t go into the technical aspects of each platform available, instead it gives a broad overview of concepts & strategies to manage presence across the platforms.

2. Why Social Media?

We subscribe to the philosophy of serial entrepreneur & Virgin founder Richard Branson on global connectivity;

Embracing social media isn’t just a bit of fun, it’s a vital way to communicate, keep your ear to the ground, & improve your business.
— Richard Branson

3. Platforms

We are all aware of the variety of platforms & people / companies engaging in social media to stay connected. The important questions to ask yourself are: “what am I using?” & “what am I using it for?”. Whatever your choices or reasons are, they are valid, & we urge you to think about the following pros, cons, privacy, & engagement tips.

4. Protecting your (online) reputation?

You better be! You’re the only one who truly cares. It’s critical to realize that anything you put up online is there forever, even if you delete it. That said, think about what you post before you do so.

It takes 20 years to build a reputation & 5 minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.
— Warren Buffet

What do you do to protect your online reputation?

  • Google yourself occasionally.
  • Set up real-time alerts for your name and other related keywords (ex. Google Alerts).
  • Monitor mentions of your name & keywords, & respond as quickly as possible to negative comments.
  • Reserve your name across the social web.
  • Establish a strong positive online presence by participating in social networks, commenting on blogs, & sharing positive content on a regular basis.

What to do if you find damaging information about yourself online?

  • Be proactive / assess the damage.
  • How much of what is being said is true?
  • How damaging is it?
  • If you are at fault, acknowledge your responsibility & apologize.
  • Delete any negative information or images if possible.
  • Push negative mentions down in search results by creating & posting positive content through updates on Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, Twitter, reviews on Yelp & similar sites, images on Pinterest, etc.

5. Pros & Cons

We all like to have fun, enjoy our lives, & sometimes brag about it or share with family & friends. It’s critical to consider the language & images you’re uploading, & how a viewer who may not know you well may react to it. This is critical because sometimes this is all someone has to judge you on (like, judging a book by its cover).

Believe it or not, some employers look at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, & LinkedIn accounts before they make a hiring decision. As private as you think your account is, there are ways (or material you may have forgotten about) that may still be visible. A good litmus test is to ask yourself “what would my mom think if she saw this?”

Not sure if your content or images are safe? One thing to consider is if the image is culturally or professionally appropriate. Does it showcase your life without compromising you as a smart individual with potential to contribute to the world?


  • Allow those with similar interests to connect & converse.
  • Allow professionals to network more easily.
  • Allow businesses & public entities to share information with customers and clients, & market themselves inexpensively.
  • Allow people to reacquaint with old friends or those who live far away.
  • Allow for grass-roots causes to organize, recruit new members & spread their messages.


  • Give hackers an opportunity to steal & misuse personal info, especially if users don’t correctly install privacy filters -even with those safeguards, posted info is never fully secure.
  • Waste time, especially for those who compulsively check or update them. For employers that means lost productivity.
  • Let bullies spread destructive information, photos or lies about others. This can be costly to those who post regrettable information or photos that are discovered by colleagues or prospective employers.

6. Privacy

Be mindful of your privacy settings across all the platforms you’re using. Keep in mind that some information is captured without the user's knowledge or consent, such as through electronic tracking & third party application on social networks. Others include law enforcement, or employers whose policies include prohibitions against workers' postings on social networking sites.

Be Aware & Vigilant

  • Don’t check-in everywhere, all the time.
  • Don’t post every picture from last night’s party.
  • Don’t click on unknown links on twitter.
  • Don’t use the same password for everything.
  • Don’t friend your boss on facebook

7. Strategic plan of action to positive online presence

  1. Inventory your resources
    • What platforms are you using, not using?
    • Why are you using them? To talk to friends? To network professionally?
    • How are you using your resources?
    • Have you deleted accounts on platforms you haven't used in a long time
  2. Inventory your online presence
    • Use common sense.
    • Google yourself.
    • Have an appropriate profile picture.
    • Have someone browse your profile.
    • Check your privacy settings.
    • Untag compromising photos.
    • Limit access to old posts.
    • Delete Dodgy Tweets / Posts.
    • Use Relevant Keywords
    • Dedicate Time to unifying your message across the platforms, including LinkedIn
  3. Define your brand: authenticity is key
    • About me: what’s your “elevator pitch”?
    • Know your “audience”.
    • Status updates: what content are you displaying?
    • What’s private and what’s public?
    • Are public posts professional appropriate?
  4. Build your network
    • Network as you would in real-life
    • Initiate contact / follow like-minded people
    • Follow up
    • Stay connected
    • Be responsive
    • Keep track
    • Participate and collaborate
    • Join specialized networks or groups
    • Work with your alma mater’s ULC
  5. Have fun
Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.
— Jeff Bezos

8. Case Studies


Students & recent grads: the “summary” portion should describe your interest in how you plan to develop professionally, & the kinds of opportunities you’re seeking. It should reflect your personality. You likely have little work experience, so be sure to highlight all your internships & leadership roles you’ve undertaken: were you class president or valedictorian, perhaps you were a camp counselor or volunteered at your local food shelter. All these experiences help highlight your leadership and personality.

If you’re more seasoned, you can move into more of a high-picture description of your interests: consider describing your core principles & the value you bring to your industry. Showcase projects, professional organization & community commitment.

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, oh my!

Consider the content you put on each platform, & determine what is personal (you share with only family & close friends), & which is public (you are comfortable putting out for the intraverse to see). You may use facebook as a personal platform, & Instagram publicly to showcase your creativity.

Websites & Blogs

These tools are a great way to showcase your work, perhaps an online portfolio or writing samples may help position you as a rising star or expert in your field. Some industries look at these tools to get a deeper read into your personality, so be sure they reflect who you really are.

In conclusion, be the best version of you, online… it helps to be the best version of you in real life as well ;)

Do you have any questions, concerns, or ideas? Drop a comment & let’s keep this conversation going.

Where's the Parti?

Where's the Parti?

Woman-Designer or Designer-Woman?

Woman-Designer or Designer-Woman?