Starting Your Job Search?

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Anne Weeks
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Address Social Media First!

It is all too easy to forget about your online presence! Whether it is Facebook or Twitter, or just that personal blog on Tumblr, the odds are someone in your job search will see what you have posted or shared. Invest time in cleaning up your social media presence before launching that job search.


  1. Are you “employer-friendly?” Scan your online posts to see if they pass the test of public scrutiny. Would a potential employer find anything questionable? Have you indicated strong opinions on controversial topics. Are there photos that would make your mother cringe? Be sure your online presence is appropriate for employer eyes.
  2. Negative posts: Google your name. Are there any negative or questionable results? If so, see if you can have the content removed. If you cannot, prepare an explanation in case you are asked in an interview about the post. Many employers now make a Google search a standard part of researching a potential employee.
  3. What is the company’s social media policy? You can sense what a company might think about your online presence based on their policy. Also, it is important to know the company policy, and to abide by it, once hired. Some companies are strict and others are more lenient. No matter the policy, though, it is always best to be professional and cautious while using social media at work.
  4. Privacy: Be sure to check your privacy settings on Facebook and any other site where you post. Who can see your content? Are you tagged in any photos that could be questionable? If so, be diligent in untagging.


Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter Mistakes To Avoid


  1. Facebook: You may have cleaned up your profile, but don’t forget to look at comments posted by friends. Any objectionable postings should either be removed or hidden.
  2. Twitter: Post relevant tweets to demonstrate your active involvement in the industry, even if it is just posting a link to an article or commenting on something you read. Retweet posts of others to gain followers and to stay active in the community.
  3. LinkedIn: Cold-calling. Don’t try to connect with people on LinkedIn with whom you have no connection. Join relevant groups to build connections, and then expand your network. Add your two cents to questions in a group, or answer questions in the Answers section of Make sure your profile is complete! Make sure your profile has a focus. Know what jobs you are seeking and focus your profile to the salient points for that industry.


Finally, What Does Your Profile Say About You?


  1. Proofread: Be sure to have keywords for recruiters to see, but also make sure there are no typos! Employers will want to see an attention to detail, and an error in your profile will send the message you are careless.
  2. Etiquette: Make sure you know the etiquette for each social media site you use. Inappropriate use of a site will send the message you are unaware of or just don’t care about the rules. This can translate to poor workplace etiquette.
  3. Unique: Be sure to indicate something unique about yourself, so you do not blend into the background of all social media users.
  4. Network: You need connections to indicate you are active. Join groups on the various social media sites and start networking and adding to the conversation.
  5. Headline: Make sure you indicate something specific about yourself in your profile headline. Don’t simply write “data manager.” Indicate what you have actually done. Then, back it up with proof – such as a link to your website, an uploaded resume, an article you have written, etc. You need to substantiate your claims.


For more help in preparing your online presence, visit the Beyond the U Blog!


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Anne Weeks

Anne Macleod Weeks is a graduate of Lawrence and Villanova Universities. She has been an educational administrator and English teacher for 38 years, specializing in the area of college admission. Ms. Weeks has been a leader in the college admission and Advanced Placement arenas and has published on pertinent educational topics in a variety of national papers and journals. She currently resides in Nova Scotia, Canada.

Latest posts by Anne Weeks (see all)