As aspiring professionals, it is crucial to our potential careers to always keep our social media accounts clean in the event that a future employer would look for them. Because of their popularity, I have outlined some tips for Facebook and Twitter to keep in mind before you permanently put information associated with your name out there on the Internet forever.
- If you wish to post things that are for your friends, consider making a personal account as well as a professional one. For your professional account, make it an easy name to remember such as your first and last name, or initials. A potential employer won’t be interested in looking at posts from “Puppylover22”, let alone hiring them.
- While it is beneficial to follow people in your field, talk to them too! Relationships can be formed easily just from retweeting something they are promoting, or responding to one of their posts. Creating conversation on social media can give you a point of reference when contacting them in the future.
- Watch who you are following and who your followers are. Don’t follow anyone with posts that you wouldn’t want to be associated with, or let your followers mention you in explicit posts.
- Stay unbiased. It will turn professionals off to you if your profile is filled with your opinions about issues such as politics, business or other hot topics.
- I’m going to be a broken record and emphasize the importance of monitoring your page’s pictures. Family vacations, fine. The crazy party you went to last weekend, not fine. If you need to keep those pictures, untag and save to a flash drive. If you really want to make a professional impression for yourself, make your profile picture similar to a head shot instead of a cropped one, or one with friends where it is unclear whose profile it really is.
- Be aware of your fan pages. Make sure that everything you “like” on Facebook is appropriate, and that they should refer to your interests and organizations you participate in.
- Utilize privacy settings. Keep some of your personal information to the imagination. You don’t need to put your cell phone number and address on your profile, as well as any details of your personal life.
- Keep your statuses rated PG. Do not swear or bad mouth organizations or activities you are involved in. You want to create a positive brand for yourself and encourage productive interaction with your page.
How do you stay professional on your social media accounts?