Social Media: Pitfalls and Step Ups

There is no secret that social media is here and will be here to stay as it works to draw the masses of people all over the world closer together. Now this can be amazing for all things career related as different companies, brands, consumers, and producers have the ability to reach out to each other. It also has the ability to create a general consensus on various events. This is where social media can become a cautionary tale over and over again. Social media has created a very distinct line to where many have fallen victim of not getting employment opportunities and even fired for reckless behavior over the last few years. It is very much ok and within your rights to voice your opinion on anything, but the way to go about it and the language used has often been the problem. Often times during the hiring phase, companies will check out social media presence to grasp a better sense of who you are.

On a lighter note, social media can be very helpful as you are transmitting new ideas as well as absorbing them. Luckily for this generation, LinkedIn, a professional social media, has been created to better serve the community of professionals that are tried to branch out to other professionals across the world. I highly recommend giving this one a try. It has been helpful to me in my job search and in finding other professionals within my field. When you create a LinkedIn page, it will be completely blank as your typical social media would be. It allows you to input all of your different experiences to display to potential employers, peers, and coworkers as a way to connect on a professional level. The neat thing about LinkedIn is the recommendation feature that is built in the program. It is set up so that your peers and people that know your work ethic can cosign your strengths and skills. LinkedIn’s primary goal is to draw you closer to other professionals and that is exactly what it does. It allows you to add them to your online network as well as provides you with a wide array of paths that have been taken by other professionals to help you reach your career goals after graduation. It gives you a real world view that we all have to start somewhere whether it is serving as an intern or taking on a leadership role in a student organization.

What do you want your social media to say about you? Will an employer shutter away thinking of a complete disaster or think that you are thoughtful and aware of the outside world without using damaging words? Take all of this into consideration when participating online as it can be both a pitfall and a step up. Hopefully, each and every one you will use it for a step up. Technology is always advancing and career readiness has taken a major leap in the technological direction by fully embracing LinkedIn as a way to gather information on future employers and future companies to create the best fit for everyone involved. So go ahead and enjoy your posts, blogs, picture sharing, and trending topics, but use judgement as the internet doesn’t go away no matter how much time has passed.  

Contributed by:
Wade Manora, Jr.
Graduate Assistant

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