With the constant innovative introduction of social media platforms such
as Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Youtube, LinkedIn and Facebook
it has become a challenge to not get absorbed into the frenzy surrounding
social media. It has actually opened up a pathway for people to express
themselves, paralleling the first amendment “freedom of speech”,
or otherwise known as freedom of expression.
The introduction of social media platforms has created a relationship between
the hiring process and social media use. Employers no longer hesitate
to search potential hires and skim through their accounts. For employers
utilizing social media during the interview/hiring process serves many
purposes. Not only does it offer the employer a more personal and authentic
perspective into the employee it also gives the employer a chance to verify
the potential employees credentials and qualifications.
Social networking sites such as LinkedIn serve as a way for individuals
to offer a condensed version of their resumes, employers often cross check
what was mentioned in interviews to what is posted on LinkedIn. Twitter
has become a social media platform that allows us to voice our personal
opinions and thoughts in just 140 characters. If employers have access
to your Twitter and decide that your tweets do not align with their mission
statement or company climate your chances of employment may be shattered.
The possibility of employers browsing your media accounts should not discourage
from engaging in social networking sites. Managing your social networking
sites does not have to be a challenge if you simply follow these tips.
The law pertains to both employers and potential employees. You have the
right to express yourself, to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas.
1. Peep what you tweet
Although it may be tempting to go on Twitter rants or tweet the first thoughts
that pop into your mind, you should be aware that sometimes you words
come back to haunt you. Making offensive remarks or comments about a race,
sexuality, or religion can harm your chances of employment. Employers
make it a priority to maintain tolerant work environments where all types
of people can are respected and valued. An employee that exhibits prejudice
behavior or makes insensitive remarks becomes a liability in the workplace.
If you would not be willing to defend your tweets, facebook posts, or
Instagram posts in an interview you probably shouldn’t post them.
2. Be mindful of the photos you share
A picture is worth a thousand words, this saying remains true online. If
employers stumble upon incriminating or inappropriate photos of you online
this may taint the opinions they have formed of you. Photos of you upside
down chugging from a beer keg will probably not appeal to employers looking
to hire. In their eyes as an employee you become a representation of the
company and your image reflects upon them.
3. Create appropriate email addresses, twitter handles, etc
When searching for you social media accounts the first thing employers
notice are the names you have chosen for you accounts. Offensive or inappropriate
handles do not bode well with employers. Account names like “sexykitten00″
are not acceptable in the professional world. Often times your social
media handles set the tone for the content on your account, be sure that
your handles do not put off potential employers.
Seeking employment should not strip you of self expression or freedom of
speech. It is possible to maintain professional social media accounts,
but also remain true to yourself. The key to managing your social media
accounts is simple discretion. If you have any questions regarding how
you can protect your right to freedom of expression online please