Online information sharing is hot topic, especially in the wake of national issues, celebrity crises and personal events. How much is too much, and where do we draw the line when it comes to what we put online? It’s a good question, especially if you’re using social media to search for a new job and submitting applications on line.
We can’t control every mention of our name when it involves a public record or something official, but we can certainly control the information we publicize ourselves. If you are searching for a new job, or just want to keep your online reputation healthy, here are three simple tips to maintain your online persona.
1. Photo Bomb. Party all weekend? By all means, share the pictures privately but don’t create a new album on Facebook. And if your friends or family are posting, make sure they don’t tag your name in pictures. Finding images of people is easier than ever with Google image search, and any tech savvy hiring manager or recruiter will immediately look for an applicant online.
2. Page Six. And that’s not the NY Post Magazine I am referring to. Try googling your name. Do you like what you see on the first page of entries? OK, but dig further. What else comes up? Make sure you are aware of when your name shows up, and if there is anything tied to you that is untrue or not right. If it can be removed, take the necessary steps to get rid of it. While we can’t delete official records, there are legitimate ways of removing anything that can be proven wrong.
3. Are you an early adopter? Did you have a MySpace page? Many people forgot all about one of the first social networks, but it still exists, and your page might too. Personal chats are not private on MySpace, and can still be found.
There is no reason for a negative online presence to affect your job search. Take the time to go through a couple easy steps in order to avoid any embarrassing mishaps. Even if you aren’t currently conducting a job search, as you continue on in your professional career, be mindful of what is out there on the Internet. Too much exposure could spoil the whole party.
Chaloner, founded in 1979 as Chaloner Associates, is a national executive search firm that focuses on recruiting mid- to senior-level communications, public relations, marketing and investor relations professionals.