How Not to Ruin Your Career

Theresa Dash - reviewer of the lesson   Theresa I February 06, 2022
Business English, Speaking Lessons, English for HR
Social Media, Work, Human Resources
A2 Elementary, B1 Intermediate
Mixed Grammar
Speaking, Vocabulary, Listening
Lesson ID
Lesson Time
30 minutes
Students engaged in a lesson about appropriate workplace behavior, discussing the impact of social media posts on their careers while watching a related video.

Lesson Overview

Could a selfie ruin your career? In this lesson, students will discuss the meaning and importance of work ethics and talk about appropriate behaviors in the workplace. This lesson features a video about how posting on social media could affect your career. Students will learn and practice vocabulary relating to the topic. The lesson includes plenty of engaging discussion activities and worksheets that have been developed for adult and teenage learners.

Lesson Objectives

  • Listening: Students will enhance their listening skills by watching a video about the impact of social media posts on career prospects. They will focus on understanding advice regarding work ethics and the long-term effects of social media activity on professional life. The goal is to develop better comprehension of spoken English in the context of professional conduct and social media.

  • Speaking: Learners will engage in discussions and activities about work ethics and appropriate workplace behaviors, especially in relation to social media. They will practice speaking about how online presence can affect their career, and share personal views or experiences. This aims to improve their conversational skills in English within a professional setting.

  • Vocabulary: The lesson will introduce vocabulary and phrases related to work ethics and social media in the workplace. Examples include terms like "professional history," "negative construe," and "conscious effort," as well as phrases like "calling out sick," "pulling a Ferris Bueller's Day Off," and "paint your professional history." The intention is to expand students' English vocabulary concerning career and online professionalism.

  • Homework: Students will complete tasks that reinforce the vocabulary and concepts learned. These will include exercises such as matching terms to their definitions, filling in the blanks with appropriate words from the lesson, and creating sentences that reflect their understanding of work ethics and social media's impact on careers. These activities aim to solidify their grasp of the topic and improve their ability to use relevant vocabulary and concepts in real-life scenarios.


Have you ever stopped to think, “Should I post this on social media?” or “Will posting this selfie affect me in the future?” Watch this video to learn about the best practices relating to social media for employees and people looking for a new job.

Video Transcript

Vocabulary and Pronunciation

work ethic(s) [noun]: a set of values centered on the importance of doing work and reflected especially in a desire or determination to work hard; moral guidelines or traits that a person or organization has
professionalism [noun]: the competence or skill expected of a professional
unethical [adjective]: not morally correct; wrong
punctuality [noun]: the fact or quality of being on time; not early or late
construe [verb]: to interpret a word or action in a particular way
in a bad light [idiom]: in a way that makes someone or something look bad
confidential [adjective]: intended to be kept secret; private or personal
moral principles [noun]: guidelines that people live by to make sure they are doing the right thing
blood, sweat, and tears [idiom]: extremely hard work or effort
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