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Asked by Chris on November 3, 2015

What do I need to AVOID doing on my social media accounts? Also, what SHOULD I be doing on my social media accounts to help my career? I want to make sure they're helping me and not hurting me.

Answered by Ashley, Hiring Expert at Textron Inc., on November 4, 2015

In today’s society, many people choose to express themselves on their social media. I would focus on first understanding who is ‘following’ you on all your social media accounts and what your aim is with each account. If you are worried about some of your past posts, you should set privacy settings for each of your social media accounts to limit who can view your different profiles.
For LinkedIn - Used primarily for professional and work purposes. Your focus should be geared toward marketing yourself in such a way that demonstrates who are as a person in the working world. Your photo should be professional rather than a personal leisure photo. This site is great for illustrating skills, interest and experience; while also being able to professionally network with past students, professors and future colleague. Facebook and Twitter- Used for a variety of reasons. You should focus on is making sure that all your uploaded and tagged photos/posts/tweets are appropriate. Even though these types of sites are used primarily personal reasons, it is good practice to “clean up” all photos and posts. Social media can be a great way to express yourself, just make sure you understand your audience!

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Answered by Lori, Hiring Expert at Cigna, on November 5, 2015

Great question and one that is becoming more and more important with the addition of more social media channels. If you are in a job search mode, it is best to evaluate all of your social media accounts to ensure what is out there is how you want to present yourself to a potential employer. Nowadays, employers are out on social media with their own channels and it is very easy for them to see what you are posting or sharing. If you are looking to present a professional image of yourself, then you are going to want to make sure that any posts and pictures you are putting out under your name follow suit. Think about it is as if you were presenting a video resume to an employer, would you include the posts and pictures listed on your account? If the answer is no, then you most likely want to edit the content to create the image you would want a potential employer to see of you.

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Answered by Stephanie, Hiring Expert at AT&T Inc., on November 9, 2015

Hi there!  Thanks for asking an excellent and very timely question!  More people should be thinking about this very subject at all levels of job searching.  I think the first portion of your question has been answered handily by the other replies, but I wanted to take on the "Should" portion of your question.  A great way to think about Social Media is how it can impact your personal brand.  As we speak, companies all over the globe are seeking out ways they can leverage their social properties to further their brand and reach a larger potential audience through social channels.  You can do the same thing by thinking about how you are representing yourself, what message you are sending...and last but not least, how you can use your social profiles to make contact with employers.  Many companies have Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram accounts for their recruiting efforts.  Following those feeds and connecting with the people who are running them is another great, and sometimes untapped, resource for getting your foot in the door.

So before you start following and engaging, take the advice of all the people responding to you here.  Have a look at your social accounts.  Do they create the picture you would like a future employer to see?  Now is the time to clean it up, set privacy settings and think about your personal brand and how you want to put it to work for you.  #lifeatatt

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Answered by Corey, Hiring Expert at BNY Mellon, on July 21, 2017

Hold yourself accountable for the materials, such as pictures, you share/post on social media and maintain your professionalism, as companies may have the ability to view your information and, it is fair to assume that some may choose to do so. Prior to posting on social media review your organization’s social media policy.

Companies also utilize social media to share their information, achievements, and opportunities. This can be an aid to you in your job hunt! Most social media sites have made it fast, easy and simple to direct you to the company’s page and to its career site to apply for a position.

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