You posted WHAT on Facebook? — Part I

We know you’re not going to give up using social media – that would just be crazy. But it would be a good idea to start using it wisely, if you haven’t yet, because there will come a time when you won’t want a future employer seeing all of those party pictures of you or reading all of your status updates that aren’t quite, well, you know what we mean.

Don’t think employers are looking? They are. A Harris Interactive study done last summer found that 45 percent of employers use social networks to screen job candidates, and a study done by Microsoft last December found that 79 percent did.

So, since we don’t want you to lose out on a great job once you graduate, here are five tips to enable you to use social media wisely from U.S. News & World Report:

  1. Create positive content.
    You want to create a good impression online. Post links to interesting stories in your intended field. Participate in debates and conversations when appropriate – just make sure to use suitable language.
  2. Don’t post questionable photos.
    More than half of those employers responding to the Harris Interactive study said inappropriate photos – drug- and drinking-related content – was the reason they turned down a job applicant.
  3. Google yourself.
    This will show you want a future employer might be seeing.
  4. Don’t post negative status updates or tweets.
    We know it’s not always easy to be positive. You may have bombed a test. Your roommate may be driving you crazy. You may have a really tough professor. But don’t let that come out in your updates. It just doesn’t make you look good.
  5. Don’t make your online presence all about you.
    People don’t really care what you had for lunch or where you were at 9 in the morning. They really don’t. Instead, share relevant articles and videos. Make valuable comments. Retweet interesting information from people you follow. If you don’t have anything to add in the social media space, people will ignore you.

Next week we’ll have more suggestions. Stay tuned.

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