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Social media is great, isn’t it? You can connect with people who are in different parts of the world to you, old friends, new acquaintances. It brings people together in a way which has never previously been possible. However, it can also work against you when it comes to trying to get a job. This is because employers will often take a look at your social media profile to work out what kind of person you are when you’re not in an interview. It sounds like it shouldn’t be ok to do this, but it is. So, if you want to get ahead in your career, there are obviously going to be things that you shouldn’t include on your social media profile. This is to make sure that they don’t backfire on you when you’re trying to get employment. Today we’re taking a look at some of the things that you should avoid on your social media profile.
Humour, like most things, is a concept which is very much in the eye of the beholder. While you and your friends may find something on social media to be hilarious, there is every chance that a potential employer may not see in the same way. Anything which could be described as being in bad taste will reflect poorly on you, and mean that your employer will be making a judgement based on what they see. If it is sexual, heavily political or offensive to any culture or minority, then it should not be on there. Use the gran rule - If you wouldn’t want your gran to see it, chances are you don’t want your potential employer to see it either. Delete it.
There’s nothing worse than having a bad day at work, and we all know it. Whether you work in an office or retail, it’s always a pain to come home and find yourself annoyed at the world. In those times, it can sometimes be very tempting to post on Facebook and have a real whinge about your boss or work colleagues and get it out of your system. However, our advice is, just don’t. Go to the pub, or for a coffee, or text your mates, but don’t post anything publically. Chances are, someone will see it and that’s a superfast road to trouble in your job. People have been sacked for less! Even if you’re not caught, anything posted publically about a previous boss will reflect poorly on you as a person. If someone sees that you’re prepared to say bad things about a company and potentially damage the reputation of the business, they’ll be less inclined to hire you and take that risk. If you do have to talk to someone about it, we suggest keeping it in the direct or private messages, and only then with someone you trust not to go shouting about it. Remember, pretty much anything can be screengrabbed.
When it comes to your social media profile, the aim is to try and strike a balance between your personality and your professionalism. Talk about hobbies, interests and things which aren’t going to get you negative judgements. If you’re into Game of Thrones, then talk about that – that’s fine, but the world doesn’t want to know all the things you’d like to do to a naked Jon Snow, trust us. Again, the gran rule can help. Those pictures of you drunk on a night out? Delete them. Selfies in a bar with friends (pre-drinking sesh, obviously) they’re great, leave them. It’s all about making sure that there’s enough of your personality on there for it to be worthwhile but also making sure that you seem like a sensible and professional individual who can be hired.
Overall, the social media profile you create – whichever platforms you use - is something you should exercise great care when posting on. Always make sure you review privacy settings – ensure it’s “Friends Only” on Facebook, and maybe consider a private Instagram or Twitter account. Don’t forget to review your profile and cover pics on Facebook too as they’re public. We know people who have been caught out by this.
Most people post without considering the consequences of their words or pictures, and this can often work against them when it comes to seeking employment and seeming like a professional.It is so easy to get information about people, and employers know this full well and will often take advantage of the fact that people are using the internet to find out what they’re like behind closed doors. If you don’t make another account or restrict your profile with the privacy settings, then everything you post which may not be appropriate is at risk of working against you. It is really important that you think about what you post, and consider whether you would want a future employer to see it on your profile.
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