Social media is proving to be the proverbial writing on the bathroom wall. Anything and everything goes, all the dirt will eventually be exposed, written or tagged about you, by yourself, or from someone else. Gossip can be rampant at times, mischievously and anonymously.
The various social media sites have become a platform for anyone who’s looking to project a certain, usually glamorous or controversial image of themselves, or to vent. It can be successful in a number of ways, making ourselves more accessible.
But you need to be fully accountable as well. What these open social public forums reveals of oneself, can prove to be extremely detrimental, destructive, this especially when it comes to one’s career or when seeking a job.
Your Life Or Your Career
By using Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, doing so is also proving to be an effective way of searching for employment, to be discovered, to brand oneself effectively online.
There are also more companies who are using social media as an useful and viable method for recruiting new talent. What’s now possible is it allows employers to seek out potential employees with sniper like precision.
They do so by searching for those who display the appropriate content on their profiles, both about their professional and personal lives, and then find those who fit into their particular company protocols or attitude.
They can search for employees who shares similar philosophies, have good ideas and ideals. Social media is now used by hiring agencies to screen, pinpoint, and refine the employee search process.
So when you’re busily creating your own personal profile on social media, thinking that just your friends and family will see your zany personality shine through, be forewarned.
This especially if you’re looking for new employment, as there are now potential employers who’ll discretely sniff through the various profiles, analyzing your personality, attempting to see whether you’ll fit into their company culture or not.
Exposing Yourself Online
A recent survey found that over 60% percent of all employers now use the major social networking sites to research their potential job candidates, and will instantly reject them if their social media profiles are too inappropriate.
Evidence could include that lakeside adventure last summer showing those provocative photos, displays of excessive drinking or partying, negative posts on previous employers or coworkers. Any dirt that’s not suitable.
What employers are also now known to do is monitor and then respond to their current employees as well. What’s discretely tracked and noted is how long and how often individuals spend on social media, especially during working hours.
How To Project Yourself Effectively
So the idea isn’t to delete all and every evidence of your life on social media, and then stay offline entirely. But instead, what’s instructed is to clean and shine it up a bit, tailor it to the image that you’re wanting to project as a professional.
It’s okay to have fun, be a tad sarcastic in good taste, perhaps be a bit subversive at times. Individuals have personalities as they are complex. But what’s important is balancing your work and personal life carefully.
Keep in mind that at all times, know how you present yourself and how you come across through social media, which is no different than going for an actual job interview in person.
Keep It Clean And Positive
Keep your Facebook Status as neutral as possible. Never vent, whine, or complain about your personal life, previous or current coworkers or employers. Keep it classy and clean, keep all of your issues to yourself.
Whether you’re looking for new employment or wanting to keep the one you have, it becomes paramount to remember that what you post does matter, and it can go viral. Something that you find humorous could easily be interpreted differently by someone else.
Be As Discrete As Possible
While your friends and your followers may be interested in seeing you and your new date, or a selfie of yourself lying in bed, your potential employers may find it distasteful. What they’re searching for is your Emotional Quotient away from the workplace.
What most employers don’t want is someone with a big ego or displaying bouts of narcissism or bullying, someone who thinks “me” first. Excessive photo sharing, especially of themselves, has proven that it makes people less likeable.
What’s more, placing all this emphasis on yourself makes others feel self-conscious, and what you don’t want to do is get judged by your potential employers or coworkers.
Keep Certain Things Private
Although it’s not really the point or purpose of social media, but if you insist on going bold and free to post, publish, or write whatever you please, while also looking for impunity, the only option is making certain areas of your profile private.
Also, if you find what your friends posts on your wall can be a poor reflection of who you are, or what your beliefs are, then talk to them about it. You can also easily turn off the function which deters them from doing so, or if it persists, just unfriend or block them.
Using Social Media Positively
Whenever you post images of yourself on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest, this of your latest Hawaiian vacation chugging down the mai-tai’s, what you’re doing is branding yourself, your personality, displaying who you are.
So why not take the same opportunity to be more more professional by using your online presence as an opportunity to display your best, the most presentable and marketable side of yourself.
Sure you can post about your Hawaii excursion, but also include posts about all the ideas which interests you, the projects that you’re working on, influential people who inspires you. You’re not your own island, so your social media profiles shouldn’t be displayed that way.