Nowadays, it’s hard to find a person who is not involved in any social network. Social networks have millions of users but only a few seriously consider the risks that these sites could pose. Although the impact of social networking on your personal brand hasn’t been scientifically measured yet, clearly, it contributes to as many spectacular successes as failures in job searches and professional careers. The question is- can social networking sites support you or be an obstacle to a job search?
Bear in mind that once you publish the message on Twitter or other social networks it will stick with you forever and can be viewed in the future. Take full responsibility for what you are posting as you will never get rid of the tail that will always drag behind you. There’s been loads of cases where employees got fired on the grounds of promoting negative image of the company or simply destroying their own personal brand through inappropriate comments or unprofessional statuses such as: “bored at work”, “lazing around at work”. In the article 30 ways to Lose a Job on Twitter you can find other outrageous messages like “I just failed my drug test”, “I think I’m getting used to being hangover at work”, “Sleeping at work”, “So bored at work and people insist on smoking weed in the bathroom”.
Maintain your positive personal image
In my post about personal branding I provided a few tips on how to create and then maintain your positive personal brand. Many people neglect their image. You can often hear about people being fired for having their personal blogs, in which they share their comments about co-workers or vividly describe work situations. Adding some disgraceful photos can also prove harmful in the recruitment process since, with the emergence of HR 2.0, recruiters search social networks to find out more about the candidates. And this digital image may have a huge impact on the decision of whether to invite or reject the applicant. Background research is now a routine procedure among HR people-candidates be aware!
Positive profile makes the decision easier
If you create a decent profile of a person who is enthusiastic about life, is involved in some after-work activities and has something interesting to say it can only increase the odds of getting invited to the interview. Your chances drop dramatically if you depict yourself nude, drunk, in obscene pose or rude, no matter if these are only isolated cases. After all, it’s you who selected the embarrassing pictures and added to the photo gallery. You create your brand. Are you sure you want to deter your future employees from hiring you?
Facebook-unofficial test for applicants
It applies especially to students, whose main activity is crazy binges and drinking sprees. They are not fully aware of how pictures of such events, may affect their future careers. The students who will later perform public jobs or medical students should be even more vigilant what they put on their networks, since there is high likelihood that they will be researched online by their future patients regularly. Don’t let the sordid episodes that you put on display ruin the immaculate image of a doctor, for example.
It’s amazing how careless people can be in what they say about themselves, their bosses and workplaces. They are not aware of the impact it may have on their future careers and how it can prevent the prospective recruiters from hiring them after they conduct online research on the candidate. Whatever you post online will come back to you and haunt you at the most unexpected moment in your life. All in all, don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t in person and don’t put anything online which you wouldn’t like your mother to see.