Screen shot of VA Careers facebook page As an American, we have the freedom to say just about anything we want. We can rant about politics and share our personal views about medical marijuana; we can even share the intimate details about our love life. Yes, we are free to tell people off, use profanity or provocative photos and expose just who we are and what we think. Let’s hear it for freedom! And if someone does not like to see or hear what I am free to do, then they can kiss my …!

Now, I love my freedom of speech as much as the next person does. I pride myself on serving our country for 20 years to defend that right. However, there is something profound that I have learned – most people do not care about my opinions on world and national views. While I am free to say anything I want on my social media pages within the terms of the agreements on each site, it is often not the best forum for me to lay out my soul. With ready access to ALL, ALL have ready access to YOU. Think about what that means the next time you are looking for a job – recruiters and hiring managers have access to all the history you have posted. Even if it is just a user name and a photo, we are all public in our online personality. If you would not want your boss, your wife or your mother to read it, do not write it.

Social media can be a highly effective tool during a job search, or it can be your downfall.  If your online image is highly regarded and sought after, you may be viewed as a positive asset to a hiring manager attempting to make a final decision between candidates. However, if your pages reflect hostilities, rudeness or unprofessional behavior, it could do the opposite. 

Trust me, I have been reminded more than once to remain, Polite, Persistent and Professional (3P’s). I have also been reminded that I have bills to pay. So, if you have not reviewed your pages lately to see what they say about you, now may be a good time.

Additional Resources: (Internet search; “social media job search don’ts”

Top 10 Social Media Do’s and Don’ts

 Social Networking Do’s and Don’ts

 11 Social Media Mistakes You Don’t Even Know You’re Making  

 

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