How social media can ruin your career

A lot of people just use social media to play Candy Crush and post funny memes. But social media can also be a really powerful tool if used properly. Social media is an integral part of your image and branding, but it’s important to do it right. One study showed that two out of five employers looked at social media profiles when considering hiring decisions – and of those about a third said they’d denied someone a job because of information uncovered on their social media profiles. Of course, your social media profiles don’t just affect your ability to get a new job – they can also affect your ability to get a promotion. So just what should – and shouldn’t – you do on social media to help your career?

Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want your mother or boss to see.

Even if your mother or current boss don’t follow you currently on the platform you post on, you never know who will look at your profile or why. Plus, even if your boss doesn’t follow you right now, what if they start following you tomorrow? If that happens, you don’t want to have to worry about cleansing your profile, hoping that whatever they’ve already seen hasn’t already had a negative effect.

Keep politics and religion out of your posts unless those things actually relate to your job.

Obviously if you’re a teacher at a parochial school or if you’re a political aide, then religion or politics would have a place in social media posts. However, if your job doesn’t relate to these things, it’s best to leave them out if you’re posting things publicly. If your boss or a potential employer sees a post they disagree with politically, it simply may tarnish their opinion of you or even subconsciously cause them to move you to the back of the line. Even if you don’t let your politics influence your work, others may view your politics as being in conflict with certain aspects of the workplace.

Do post update on career status.

That is, if you get a new job, post about it. If you’re out of a job, post that you’re looking for one. If it’s a site that has options to post information about previous employment, do so – even if you intend to use that outlet for non-professional social purposes. It is exactly because you never know who may look at your profile that you want to have all your best professional information out there. You never know what doors it may open

Can Akdeniz

Can Akdeniz is the author of seven books and founder of Business Hacker, a popular business blog. His books such as Go Nuts, Cool Boss, Happy Company and MBA 2.0 have changed how people think about business, productivity and work.