Many people think that when they’re applying for a new job, they’ll only be assessed based on their resumes and interviews. However, as social media is becoming more prominent, with an ever-growing user base, that’s not the case anymore. The way you portray yourself online might determine whether you get a job or not.
So, before you starting applying for new jobs, make sure your digital persona is not tarnishing your image and you’re not putting yourself at a disadvantage. You should have the right privacy settings in place and remove all signs of bad behavior. Your future employers should find a reputable person when they look you up on Facebook.
Control Your Privacy Settings
If you’ve never fiddled with your Facebook privacy settings before, now is the time to understand how they work. It’s important to limit who can see your posts and pictures, so it’s best to set it as “friends” or “friends of friends.” You should also review any posts and pictures you’re tagged in, and remove anything you don’t like.
Delete Inappropriate Photos
Everybody has some sort of inappropriate photo hidden somewhere, and that’s exactly where it should stay, not on your timeline. Even some pictures of you pulling faces can sometimes be construed as immature, depending on the context. So, if you’re proud of that group photo of you going skinny dipping in a lake, you should remember that someone with traditional values might not appreciate it.
Create a Killer About Page
One of the first things potential employers check on your Facebook profile is the About page. It’s not uncommon for people to lie about their qualifications on their resumes and they’re quickly uncovered when it doesn’t match their Facebook profile. So, make sure you’re honest and also don’t forget to add work experiences that suit the place where you’d like to work.
Don’t Bad-Mouth Previous Employers
If you’ve ever had a bad experience in the workplace, you should never talk about it on Facebook. Even if you’re angry, you’d be doing yourself a disservice by making negative statements about other people, especially people you worked with. In the heat of the moment, you might talk about things that were confidential and get yourself into serious trouble for something silly.
Show Yourself Under a Positive Light
The best course of action is to try to portray yourself as a law-abiding citizen with an interesting personality. Basically, you should focus on the positive facts of your life. So, if for instance you have strong political views or religious beliefs, you shouldn’t pick fights with other people and use swear words. You should also write engaging and grammatically correct posts, so employers can see you have great communication skills.
At the end of the day, you just need to remember that your digital persona and the real you are not separate entities. Employers will probably make assumptions based on your Facebook profile, so you should ensure that the person they find online is the perfect fit for their company.
Photo by moore.owen38 on flickr – some rights reserved
Guest Author Bio
Guilherme is a Brazilian freelance writer who has written for the Huffington Post, Matador Network, Lifehack, and other publications. Check out his portfolio to see more.