Our generation seems to have an obsession with putting everything online. It is vital that we be careful with what we are posting. There are things that can automatically disqualify you from a job and there are certain things potential employers are looking for. The internet is a beautiful disaster. Employers can find your amazing blog while also finding you criminal past. They could find your awesome LinkedIn followed by your not so awesome Facebook pictures where you’re making a fool of yourself.

So here are my tips on keeping your social media clean.

Avoid controversial pictures.

There should be no pictures of you that people took and tagged you in where you’re embarrassingly intoxicated. This does not mean take down any picture you have with a drink in your hand, unless you’re underage, then definitely take those down, but just ones that you wouldn’t want your future in-laws to see. 

Do not use foul language.

There is nothing worse than seeing someone dropping f-bombs every other word. People want to hire someone who is has a vocabulary outside of four letter words.

Use proper grammar.

There is nothing worse than seeing someone write incoherently like they’re stuck texting back on a 2006 flip phone saying things like “cn u not?” Do everyone a favor and type like your scary English teacher from high school is standing over your shoulder.

Don’t complain about work online.

A great way for an employer to immediately write you off is to be talking smack about your current or former boss. Passive aggressive tweets or Facebook posts can catch up with you. No one wants to hire someone who is airing dirty laundry.

You are what you post.

Clean up any posts you might not want your future bosses to see. Don’t tweet about your most recent break up or don’t be dissing your family in your Facebook status. Having a good sense of humor that can be conveyed over a computer screen gives you a likeability factor but posting about how awful your life can be is both annoying and shows that you’re a debbie downer.

Share content that is relevant to what you’re field.

If you’re involved in the tech industry, share the most recent updates about what is happening in that world. If you’re applying for a job in the tech industry and all of your posts are about fashion and beauty, they might think you won’t give 100% to the job you’d have to do at work.

Be honest about your qualifications.

Do not lie on LinkedIn or Facebook. Do not lie about any of your work history. Someone will find out and you will lose all credibility. Do not lie about what college you went to or what degree you have. Just don’t lie.

Change your privacy settings and use your real name.

This does not mean ghost mode. Having an online profile is a great way for your potential employers to get to know you but keeping some things private is more than okay. Using your real name is also important. No one wants to see your high school nickname in parentheses between your first and last name on social media. If you go by your initials, that is fine.

Personal branding is a must.

This is specific to people in politics. Know your audience and know what you believe in. Being yourself is your brand but maybe it’s your one-liners or maybe it’s your witty remarks to a media story that makes no sense. Find what makes you likeable and stick with it.

Be yourself but also, not really.

Don’t lie about your interests or qualifications, but do be yourself online. Don’t post any pictures that might be seen as controversial, but do post pictures depicting your personality. Share your interests and what makes you happy. It is important to be yourself because this job might be a job you’re stuck in for awhile. You really don’t want to have to live up to an online personality you created just for a job.

Do what you love, love what you do. Just be careful with social media while doing it.

Caroline C.
FFL Cabinet Member
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