Career Advice

Establish Social Media Presence That Is Positive

ESTABLISH SOCIAL MEDIA PRESENCE THAT IS POSITIVE
Many students believe social media presence has nothing to do with employment. That may not be true. Therefore, keep that in mind as you are snapping those pictures and posting them on your Instagram.  Be mindful and establish social media presence that is positive

Do all employers look at social media before making hiring decisions? No! Experts say that 29% of hiring managers look at LinkedIn accounts, while 38% look at other social media accounts.


WHAT DOES SOCIAL MEDIA HAVE TO DO WITH PRE-EMPLOYMENT?

If a potential employer wanted to find out about your employment history, the first thing they would do is look at your resume. The resume gives them information about your skills, where you’ve worked in the past, if you’ve graduated from high school or college, your memberships in various organizations, etc.

If the employer wants to delve into who you really are, one of the first places to seek information about you is your social media accounts – mostly Instagram and Facebook.

Nowadays, it is said that employers look at those social media accounts even more than LinkedIn. Why? Because your LinkedIn account is basically your on-line resume which is information they may already have. However, your Instagram and Facebook accounts tell employers much more about your personality –  including your beliefs.

Facebook

WHAT ARE HIRING MANAGERS LOOKING FOR?
One of the most important aspects to consider about potential employees is if that person is going to be a good cultural fit. For example, if the company works with a lot of clients, the hiring manager is looking to find out if the person is rude or offensive. They certainly don’t want someone interacting with clients, or potential clients, that may offend them. In addition to Instagram and Facebook, Twitter can provide employers with information on how you relate with others.

Establishing a hobby outside of work is greatMany times, hiring managers are looking to find out about your hobbies and interests. They want to see that you are well-rounded and has interests outside of the job. One example of this would be someone who has applied for an IT position and in your spare time, you are a member of an IT club. In that particular situation, you would be learning additional things that you could bring to that position. The fact you are in an outside organization in your spare time would look favorable to a hiring manager. Make sense?


WHAT CAN YOU DO?

If you don’t want hiring managers looking at your social media, you can check your privacy settings so that only your friends can see your social media.

According to HR experts, employers must be careful. While they are looking through social media, they could potentially obtain information about the potential employee’s heritage or age. If the potential employee somehow found out they were not hired based on those aspects, there could be some legalities around this.

To avoid potential problems, some employers chose only to look at someone’s LinkedIn account for information instead of personal accounts.

Employers may look at your LinkedIn profile


YOU HAVE OBTAINED THE JOB, NOW WHAT?

Once you have obtained the job, that does not give you permission to engage in negative behavior and post trash all over your social media sites – especially about your employer.

Don't convey negative feelings about your employer on social mediaKeep this in mind –  once you hit the “post” or “send” button, you can’t take it back. Whatever you have posted is out there for the whole world to see. Even posts that are deleted can still be recalled. You hear about this happening in the news all the time, right? Someone tweeted something and then deleted it. But miraculously, here it is – making a headline in the news!

If you are bashing your employer or employees of the company, it can, and mostly likely will be found! And yes, this could be a very embarrassing situation for you. I have seen a situation like this happen with my own eyes.  Don’t let this happen to you.

 

 


FINAL THOUGHTS
While not all employers look at the social media sites of potential employees, the best thing to do is be careful and clean up your pages before applying for the position. There is nothing negative if you decide to establish social media presence that is positive. However, there could be ramifications for negative social media – even if you post something derogatory after you’ve been hired.


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17 thoughts on “Establish Social Media Presence That Is Positive

  1. Great information here Yvette, a lot of things I was not aware of. You bring up a lot of valid points. Young people are not aware of all the consequences of posting on social media, many think it is all fun and games. All those party videos and racy photos can come back to haunt you someday, as some are finding out. Everything we post on a social media site is public.
    Also, after you are hired, an employee may look at your profile and see what you think of your new job, so if you want to keep your new job be sure to post positive things.
    Great article! THX

    1. Wayne, thank you for stopping by my site. Your comments and kind words are greatly appreciated. You bring up some valid points as well. Employers can definitely find out what you are posting about your new company on your site. I witnessed a student get very embarrassed for posting something negative on their social media and the reason for bringing it up was to let people know how easy it is to find information on someone’s social media site. Once you hit the send button, information is gone – even if you delete it, there are ways to find posted items. It is very important for people to be aware of that. Thanks, once again, for your comments.

  2. Yes, I do agree that social media is very important today! While it’s tempting to want to put out all our thought processes and every aspect of our lives on social media, It’s important we think critically before posting. Before posting we should ask ourselves, “Is this offensive to anyone?” “Will I be embarrassed if potential employers see this?” “Is this appropriate for everyone to see?” These kinds of questions will help us make better decisions online.

    1. Welcome back, Kareemah. Thank you for visiting my site and for your great comments. You make some very valid points and those questions you should ask yourself before posting are absolutely valuable. Yes! You definitely hit the nail on the head with your comments on this. Thank you for bringing such a wonderful perspective to this topic. I appreciate it very much.I wish you all the best.

  3. What a very interesting article you have written, Yvette. Certainly food for thought. I have never really thought about job recruiters checking your social connections to ‘see’ who you are – yet you make a very valid point. With social media ‘taking over the consciousness’ of the world, it should come as no surprise that it would also be another ‘source’ of employee ‘ history’. You certainly have made me more aware of what I do and say when it comes to social media.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Michelle

    1. Thank you for visiting my site, Michelle. Thank you, also, for the kind words and comments. I am happy you found my article to be helpful. That is so great to know because many may not be aware of just how much their social media may make an impression (good or bad) on others – especially your potential employers. Thanks again, Michelle, for stopping by.

  4. This is absolutely true and very important to be careful what you post online, employers definitely do look before and after you are hired. Just recently my friend/acquaintance spoke out against a hypocrisy that is well known and a faithful fan of one being called out, took a screenshot of her post and emailed it to her employer in an attempt to get her fired. I believe her boss could see right through it, but others have not been so lucky. Personally, I never include my employment to avoid any issues like that from even coming up. Thanks for this reminder.

  5. Hello Yvette, to me as a person who grew up before cell phones and Social Media, it is amazing how pervasive all of this has become in our world today. And that fact that as you said, before you hit the send button think first. Is indeed amazing advice. For it is so important to at all times keep your dignity. And that is yet another life skill, isn’t it? As you talk about, knowing that no matter the age we are always needing to keep our highest self at the forefront.
    And I have to say, Social Media does indeed show how we choose to interact. Great article. Such an informative site. So well done Yvette! I will certainly refer this to friends.
    In peace and gratitude, ariel

    1. Ariel, thank you so much for stopping by, the kind words and comments. Yes, making sure you keep your professionalism in the forefront at all times on social media is extremely important. Sometimes we are so absorbed in the aspect of whatever is going on in our lives, we can get caught up and without thinking just post something. There is something to be said about posting things on social media platforms, going back to delete it, and finding out people are not only able to still see it, but comment on it. This happened to me just recently. Once again, thank you for stopping by and for referring this to your friends. Please stop by again soon.

  6. Wow, that’s another thing new I have learned, but makes total sense. Employers actually looking through the interviewees’ social media sites. I think that is a bit unfair as people like to post things when they are having fun but when in work could have total dedication and good work ethics. You are definitely right about whatever we post gets saved and never deleted even pictures we take on our phones and messages we send get stored somewhere in some giant database.

    Great post. Very informative and definitely a good heads up for people going for an interview. Thank you for sharing.

    Dean

    1. Thank you, Dean, for visiting my site and for the comments and kind words. It may seem unfair that people can be seen in a negative light for things they post in their social media. However, as far as trying to determine certain personality traits for organizational fit, that may be the best way for employers to obtain information. Companies want to be associated with employees they feel won’t use their name in a negative light – especially in social media, so they may feel this is where it is best determined. There can be a fine line with it all and caution needs to be taken on everyone’s part – employer and employee. Once again, thank you for stopping by and for your comments. Please visit again soon.

  7. Hello,

    Thank you for the post! I am someone older and not currently looking for an employment. However, I do have an employee – a companion and assistant to my son with disabilities. When I hire a new person, I definitely check their Facebook profile. Even lack of public information on a person’s FB profile gives me a feedback – the person is smart enough to manage security of his/her posts – ‘smart & careful’ is good for the position. 🙂

    Even for someone who is more mature and experienced like myself – your article is priceless, because you thought of everything. While reading, I thought: Oh, but couple years ago I was still thinking of working for an employer again… and I forgot that I added year of birth to my public profile – so, that young boys, who can’t read the age by the photo, stop flirting with me… Well, those employers who check social network accounts would see my age too, and unfortunately, it’s not playing in my favor anymore… I understand that checking prospective employee’s age is illegal. But, a clever employer (and they usually are clever) won’t even tell anybody that they viewed your Facebook account – so, it’s almost impossible to prove.

    Anyway, this is a well thought-through, very comprehensive, and nicely written article. Unfortunately, too many young people forget that ANY written work, image or a video is documentation, which could work for or against them. Privacy settings should not be overlooked, and not every thought or event is appropriate for the social networks at all – certain things are better kept for oneself.

    All the best,

    ~ Julia

    1. Thank you very much, Julia, for visiting, the kind words and those great comments. You are so right about everything around what you’ve said. Using social media in hiring practices can be very helpful – as you have pointed out. However, people are privy to all kinds of information when profiles are completed. Birthday notifications pop up all the time, so information is readily available to everyone – including employers. You also bring up another good point and I am very aware that people use these platforms for dating and activities outside the scope for which they are intended. It is unfortunate and I make it a point to warn my students against those types of activities. Once again, thank you for stopping by and for all your wonderful input. Have a great day.

  8. You are so right, that what you do on Social Media has repercussions. I know people in my workplace who have been sacked for putting a disparaging remark on Facebook that got back to the company. Even if you’ve got your settings set to private someone on your page can still inform your boss, especially if you have colleagues on there. We had another one that put an inappropriate profile picture that put him and the company in a poor light, it got media attention – he lost his job, no questions asked! I don’t think kids realise just how much damage interactions on the internet can do. Thank you for such a great post to teach young people the skills they need to navigate social media.

    1. Megan, thank you so much for visiting my site and for those wonderful examples. What you described in your examples are exactly what people don’t realize when they are out in on social media. You give a perfect example of how the media can get involved and the company is seen in a negative light. Once that information is out there, it’s done and can’t be taken back. Once again, thank you so much for sharing. Please come back and visit my site again soon.

  9. Great opening blog post for students! Social media is definitely a MUST have tool for anyone in high school or university.
    I agree that more and more Recruitment Managers are doing background checks on candidates through their social media accounts. Many students don’t realise that those “fun” photos that they took 2 years ago could either help or hinder getting them a job.
    I really like your suggestion to go through your social media accounts and “clean up” anything that you don’t want people to see. More and more social media accounts are offering “anniversary postings” of news, events and milestones that happened on this date in the past. This is a trap for many people who may have deleted a post / page that they once thought was “funny” and “edgy” and “cool” that now resurfaces when they no longer hold those views.
    Sometimes memory lane can be very unkind!

    1. Thank you so much for visiting my site and for the comments. You make many very good points about social media coming back with those anniversary posts. Choosing to post those anniversary pictures may or may not be a good choice for someone wanting to maintain a positive presence with their social media. While the entire aspect of social media can be great, it can definitely come back to haunt. Once again, thank you for the visit and comments. Please come back and visit again soon.

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