It seems that there is no professional publication these days without at least one warning or fright story about social media.
A management tip from the Harvard Business Review titled ‘Think twice before updating your Facebook profile’ warns job seekers of the effects their postings on social media may have on their job prospects as employers and human resources professionals increasingly turn to social media to obtain information about prospective employees.
While there is a significant amount of truth in these warnings, as always, there is another, positive, side to being yourself in your social media presence.
Having the right skills and experience are of course the basic starting point for success in any professional role. However, never underestimate the importance of your personality/cultural fit with your immediate colleagues and the organisation you wish to work for. If you are unable to fit in with the personality of your colleagues and the culture of your organisation, your chances of success and longevity in any role will be jeopardised.
By ‘over-censoring’ yourself in your social media presence you may create the ‘right’ professional impression for a potential employer. However, if you are hired on the basis of an ‘artificial’ personality, you might find yourself working with people and within an organisation where you are not the right personality/cultural fit. Chances are that you will not be able to perform to the best of your abilities in such an environment and consequently your job satisfaction and quality of life are likely to suffer significantly.
On the other hand, by simply being yourself in your social media presence you may lose out on a job opportunity or two, but at the same time you are also likely to save yourself from the pain of being trapped in an environment where you are simply not the right personality/cultural fit.