Online brand management is typically identified with companies, but when you’re seeking a job, it can also apply to you. With the prevalence of social media, it’s gotten easier than ever for potential employers to find information about you and you may not like what they find.
The first step is to Google yourself. Use a few different variations of your name and enclose it within quote marks. This will pull up just about everything there is to know about you online and it’s exactly what your new employers will be doing. Go through the results and see what comes up.
You may be surprised at just how many entries you’ll have. Old blogs you may have started, snippets from your social media accounts and even pictures that may not be flattering. Once you have an idea of what you’re working with, you can begin some damage control.
If you have pictures up on your Facebook profile that you would rather not have a new employer see, remove these. The same goes with posts on Facebook and Twitter. A little spring cleaning will have your profiles cleaned up in no time. Blog comments you may have left will be a little more difficult. The odds are the site owner probably won’t remove them, so this is a good time to either hope they don’t pull them up, or to create a good explanation now as to what you were thinking in the event your new employer does bring that up.
Remember, you may not be a company, but you are still a brand. This is a great time to start viewing your online activities in this light. If you wouldn’t want something to hurt your job search, it’s simply best not to say it. If you start viewing yourself as a brand rather than shooting from the hip online, you’ll be able to breeze through an interview without having to worry what they may be able to dig up.
Most employers know that we’re all human and we all make mistakes. Don’t get overly concerned if you do have a few embarrassing things out there. It’s only time to worry if it could be damaging to your future career.