How to use social media and look like a rockstar on a recruiter’s radar 25th March 2012 by Dan Taylor

It is truly fascinating how the way people are portrayed online can literally influence the rest of our lives including your relationships and even careers.  Every piece of information posted online can work to your advantage or potentially destroy you.  This means that all the drunken pictures and silly comments that teenagers and adults post on their facebooks and blogs may actually have more severe consequences then just humiliation amongst their friends.

Today, ” 89% of companies [are] using social media as part of their recruitment process.”  This means that every school or job you apply for may not just be judging you based on your resume’ but also on your online reputation.  It is likely the recruiter might already know more about you that what you want them to.

People seeking to get hired or in to their dream schools must track their online reputations, making sure that everything they put on the internet is consistent and perhaps it is necessary to ask to take those unwanted pictures.  “Whether you’re actively looking for a gig, or simply using social media to present yourself to the world with the ‘I’m employed, but make me an offer, and let’s talk’ sign on in the background, it’s important to always be selling yourself.”  Social media has shifted from being purely for social enjoyment to actually becoming your online persona that is not only judged by friends.  By having an online account you are self-marketing yourself, showing people who you are and what makes you stand out of the crowed.

Whether we like it or not, we must take this in to consideration.  Even my friends finishing their senior year in highschool have changed their real names on facebook so the admissions committees at universities cannot find them.  Although it seems unfair, it such such an easy and accurate way of judging people.  Even colleges are tempted to look.

Although I think there are many positive aspects about self advertising yourself online, I can’t help but feel slightly violated.   I have been on facebook for about five years now, it has almost become like a scrapbook.  I have pictures posted since 2007 with my friends and family.  I use facebook as a way of connecting with people I care about who I don’t see often.  The fact that I get judged by my boss or school because of my social life doesn’t seem right.  This way of judging people says so much about what our societies real values are. We get just by our persona’s on facebook and blogs, not by our qualifications.  It seems like social status and the way you present yourself means more then your actual talent.

The fact that we cannot have a clear distinction between social life and work life online, defies human nature. We do not live only to impress our boss, we also live for our friends and to be happy.  By judging our social lives online we are basing too much of our lives on “success” and work.  I do not think this is the most important thing in life and I don’t think it is healthy either. I am not talking about sites like linkedin, which purpose is to find a job, but I think sites like facebook, blogspot, tumblr, flickr, etc… should remain strictly amongst friends and it should not be used for anything else.


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