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Inappropriate postings on social networking sites could cost you your job, so think twice before uploading pictures from that crazy party last night or writing something negative about your boss. Instead, enlist these tips for keeping a clean profile online.
Getting a new job or having a baby? Update your Facebook status. Hosting a wild party? Post the invite on Facebook. Meet a great girl at a bar and want to show off your "catch"? Before you post that crazy picture, think about who might see it and what impact that photo could have.
In theory, electronic applications like Facebook are a great way to share life's adventures. Grandma can see pictures of your son's soccer game, you can follow Uncle Terrell's vacation to New York City through his captions and photos, or you can read about how your college roommates, Susan and Jennifer, spent their weekends. However, there could be some job-related repercussions that are a result of an inappropriate posting or unsuitable photo upload.
Case in point: the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette newspaper recently reported the firing of a young man following a disparaging comment he posted on his Facebook page. The man was employed by Major League Baseball's Pittsburgh Pirates to entertain spectators as a dressed-up pierogi who ran in silly races between innings. But the man lost his job within hours after ranting online that contract extensions offered by the team's president to the manager and general manager through 2011 "means a 19-straight losing streak. Way to go Pirates."
Following public outcry, the "pierogi" was rehired, but the lesson learned is a good one. Don't post personal thoughts about the boss or whomever you work for.
Indeed, people are amazingly unencumbered to share their latest complaints, news or bar-hopping adventures, they have the photos to prove it, and they will update their Facebook, Twitter or MySpace statuses accordingly without batting an eye. But know this: when employers perform background checks on potential employees, they'll often search the Internet to see how people are represented online. Anything incriminating or distasteful could cost you a job. In fact, 45% of employers in a 2009 CareerBuilder survey use social networking sites to research job candidates, a big jump up from 22% in 2008.
Your current employer may perform similar online hunts and if they find something they don't like, it could impact your ability to earn a promotion or a positive performance review, or even impact the status of your employment all together. While it's certainly OK to participate in social networking sites, you must do so smartly. Here are some dos and don'ts for managing your online presence and make sure that your desire for social networking doesn't hurt your career:
If you are looking for a job, networking is a powerful skill to master. The art of making genuine connections with other people can help you discover new opportunities, share job leads, and learn crucial information for the employment hunt.
Check out these five tips to learn what young job seekers can do to better position themselves or success in today's job market.
When filling out a job application, individuals should tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
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