Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat — they’ve all become key tools for communicating with friends and family, sharing your life story, and even making business connections through digital networking. But should you still be wary of what you’re posting online and how that might affect your chances of getting hired? While there’s certainly truth to the fact that a strong social media presence can bring you more work, having an inappropriate online presence can do just the opposite. So what shouldn’t you be posting on your social media accounts? We’ve got the answers for you below.
Social Media may have come about as a way for friends to socialize (remember when it used to take an .edu email address to have a Facebook!?), but these days, it’s capable of doing a lot more than serving as a platform for friends to keep in touch. Candidates applying for remote positions, in particular, should be aware of what they’re posting on their profiles, as many employers will search social media profiles to get a feel for a candidate. Since many remote positions don’t allow for an in-person interview, your social media accounts are the next best thing. That being said, if you’re working remotely, you’ll want your accounts to look as professional as possible.
These three categories are red flags for many employers, and by having these types of postings on your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts, you’re likely hurting your chances of getting hired by a professional company.
1) Smack Talk About Your Employer
We get it, sometimes your boss can be a total jerk. Maybe some of your coworkers are incompetent and a majority of the workload falls on you. Or perhaps you really think you deserved a bigger Christmas bonus. Employers aren’t always perfect, but you don’t need to put them on blast in 140 characters or less. In fact, don’t put them on blast at all, as this is a huge turn-off for hiring managers looking at your social media profiles. Why? Well, it’s quite simple really. If you’re willing to put your current employer on blast, what would stop you from putting your future employer on blast?
2) Derogatory Comments
Hopefully you’re not posting derogatory comments on your social media accounts regardless of whether or not you’re applying for a remote position. Hurtful comments regarding race, gender, religion, or any other group tarnishes your brand, offends others, and is completely inappropriate and unwelcome in the workplace. When a company hires you, you’ll be representing that company, and nobody wants an employee who makes derogatory comments on their social media platforms representing their company name.
3) Inappropriate Photos
Avoid posting inappropriate photos on your social media accounts, instead stick with family-friendly images. This includes avoiding images that are sexually promiscuous, featuring any sort of illegal paraphernalia, and not representing you in your best light. Use your best judgement. Your bachelor party may have been a total blast, but you really don’t need to post photos of yourself staggering out of a club at four in the morning. Instead, share images that represent a healthy and responsible work-life balance.
To go private or public… that is the question! While having private social media accounts does protect you from having any unwelcome eyes on your profile, having a publicly accessible profile may lead to more opportunity. Many business connections are made via social media, but you first have to be willing to go public with your profile. If you don’t feel comfortable making your social media accounts public, then it’s best not to do so. You can include a note in your cover letters to potential employers that informs them you can provide access to your social media profiles if need be. No matter your approach, making sure that your social media accounts represent a responsible and professional version of yourself can be key in landing a remote position.
Originally written by Chelsey Grasso on Remote.com