Crawl Under a Rock

July 8, 2009 at 10:26 am Leave a comment

I just finished reading an article that warned against Tweeting if you’re in the process of interviewing for jobs. The reason? Because you might disclose something negative about yourself that causes you to lose value as a job candidate. The example they gave was a woman who, according to her resume, was qualified for a mid-level accounting job. But, when the hiring company looked at her online profiles – which is done more and more often these days – what they saw was a person with a negative attitude. Thus, she was no longer considered for the job.

Here’s what I have to say about this: Advising someone to hide under a rock in hopes that no one discovers their bad attitude is pretty twisted counsel. Rather, you might advise that person to work on their attitude.

One of the beauties of social networking is that you can feel free to be yourself – good, bad or otherwise. If you’re good, and you contribute value to the conversation, and you bring out the best in others, and you’re fun to find online, then you should get to be recognized for your attributes. If you’re bad, and make negative remarks, and complain and whine, so be it. It’s who you are – online, and most likely offline. If a potential employer fails to look at your online activity and ends up hiring you, they’ll figure out their mistake in short order and you’ll still be looking for another job. (Side note: If the recruiter searches for you online and finds nothing, or finds you’ve abandoned your networks, that’s going to say something about you, too. They could easily surmise that you’re hiding.)

Everyone has the occasional bad day, and sometimes that slips out in a Tweet or status update. Most people, however, know that their bad mood will pass, and posting about it isn’t going to help. So my advice is: use discretion and a little self-discipline to keep yourself from “dumping” on your community. However, if you positively can’t keep yourself from being rude, harsh, ugly, or whatever it is that seems to be oozing from your pores, go ahead and be authentic. It’s your prerogative and your privilege. But you also need to be prepared for the consequences. If you don’t like the consequences, maybe you’ll be motivated to do what you have to to become a happier person. And that’s not all bad, either.

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Entry filed under: Social Media.

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