“What happens to YOU today will be on MY Facebook page tomorrow”.
I saw this statement on a t-shirt yesterday and I had to chuckle.
Does that hit home for any of you? I know I’ve been the victim of random “tagging”. A friend identifies you in a photo on their page which ultimately ends up on your page and is out there floating on the Internet for the world to see. The picture is innocent enough when you know the back story; but, for an outsider (i.e.: potential employer) wandering on-line trying to get a snapshot of what you are about, the picture can be pretty incriminating and not very pretty at all.
When you are in a job search time can be a valuable commodity and you probably do not have any to spare to be poking around on social media sites. However, I am going to recommend that you make time to go on-line with the mindset of a hiring manager and see what you can find out about the new recruit—YOU!
Google all the variations of your name that you use. What you find may or may not be you. But, at least you will know what employers are seeing on-line associated with your name and then you can be ready to address it during the interview process.
Go to all of your social media profiles (Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, etc.) and do some house cleaning. I would even recommend doing this before you apply for a position as you never know WHEN an employer will hop on the Internet and start doing research. Get rid of those questionable comments, photos and—in some cases—friends.
As far as Facebook goes, There is a way to “hide” your friends’ postings on your page rather than “un-friend” them completely. You want to project the type of image that an employer could be seeking in an employee. Granted, Facebook is more of a personal experience, but you want to be sure that your “fun side” does not contradict the professional image that you want employers seeing.
I could spend hours writing about social media dos, don’ts and what ifs, but these few tips will get you started on having a consistent on-line presence.