In this digital age, social media is a major part of many of our lives.
From Facebook to Twitter and Instagram to TikTok, barely a day (or, more likely, an hour!) goes by where we’re not popping open apps, clicking, watching, liking and scrolling. While it can be easy to fall down the social media rabbit hole and spend hours doomscrolling or stalking an ex, there are actually plenty of very productive ways to participate in social media—both for your personal and professional gain!
Even though we may be used to using social media for fun and friends—vacation pictures, catching up with old classmates—it can be a valuable resource for advancing your career (and learning lots of new skills along the way!). Here are just a few things you should make sure you’re focused on when you sign on:
It’s common knowledge that you should avoid using spring break photos for your profile and cover shots on social media but there are also a few quick must-haves to help convey a professional but also a realistic portrayal of yourself to the future employers. Think of your social media profiles like a resume: You want to share all the information a recruiter would need to know with just a few clicks. That means making sure you populate the About Me sections on your profiles with the basics of your education, career experiences, and goals and highlighting photos that show both your professional drive and your unique personality.
Connections through content:
Across your social media platforms, be mindful of what you’re sharing. Apart from avoiding questionable posts, be proactive about letting social media know your career interests: Share insightful articles on issues in the field you’re looking to get into or commentary from thought leaders that aligns with your outlook. The more you populate your pages with career-minded content, the more you’ll attract new connections who can help you elevate your career to the next level.
Be a follower:
That’s not a phrase that’s usually associated with success but, when it comes to using social media for career development and advancement, following those who have found success in your respective field is a smart move. From recruiters and hiring managers at employers you have your eye on to experts and executives in the field, the folks you follow today—and interact with!—could be a gateway to your dream job of tomorrow.