This blog post was written by Kristyn Anguiano, senior sociology major and film and television studies minor and Campus Ambassador at Loyola Marymount University Follow her on Twitter @KristynMA.
Nowadays many people have an account on facebook or twitter or both. As someone looking to get hired, though, there are some things you have to be aware of when using social media. I have listed my top four rules below for keeping your social media accounts spotless and appealing to future employers.
1. Watch what you say to others. This one is probably the most self explanatory but it is really important to edit what you type and to be aware of how others perceive you. Portray yourself well. Beware of inside jokes which could be offensive to those who are not in the know. If your employer is your friend on facebook or is following you on twitter be extra careful about what you post.
2. Watch what people say about you. Would employers have a problem with what you have posted on your wall or what your friends have posted on your wall? This is something to keep in mind especially when you are posting pictures or when your friends are tagging you in pictures.
Generally, if I am not sure if a picture is appropriate I untag myself just to be on the safe side.
3. Don’t upset your supporters. Simple as that. Your friends or followers are the ones who will read what you have to say. They have the power to share your words with others, thus potentially increasing your social media power. Recently, I was on twitter and saw a tweet that made me laugh so I decided to retweet it and follow the person who wrote it. The next day I saw a tweet from this person saying that they were annoyed at people retweeting or favoriting that specific tweet. This may have been a harmless thing to say but it rubbed me the wrong way. It is never a good idea to hate on your supporters as that can often get you unfollowed.
4. Be polite. We have all heard the saying: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”. This could (and should) be applied to social media. Don’t post or tweet anything that you know will hurt someone’s feelings and start a fight. I was scanning my twitter timeline a while ago and saw that someone trying to make it in the entertainment industry had tweeted a harmless joke about a famous actor’s tweets. The actor felt insulted and tweeted his anger back to the person. All in all, it’s never a good idea to insult someone even if you think that they won’t see your tweet or will brush if off. Be careful about what you write because what might seem funny to you could come off as rude to someone else.
Overall, social media can really help you market yourself to a prospective employer as long as you are cautious about what you share. My general rule of thumb is if it is something you would not show to your parents, it probably should not be on facebook for all to see.