For our second Becoming a Professional Dutchman session, Bill Glose (’81, Business Administration) spoke to students about how to affectively use Social Media to complement your job search strategies. After the presentation, I asked those in attendance to send me any follow up questions so that I could pass those along to Mr. Glose. Bill has graciously typed his responses as a Blog contribution!
1. Who is appropriate to connect with on Linked In (since I’m a student)? Should I connect with employers I want to work for (for networking purposes) or only connect with people I know first? Do professionals get annoyed if students ask to connect with them because they are looking for a job?
This is a great question. First of all, I would begin connecting with people inside organizations that you know. Don't be concerned about being a student. We all were students. The next step would be to connect with people inside companies that you want to work for. Do some research to connect with the key people who can help you. A great place to find them would be in the LinkedIn jobs section and see who posts the jobs. These people may be the hiring managers or HR. Great contacts! Also find LVC grads to help you at their companies. Remember LinkedIn is the professional persons Facebook and they will want to connect with you to build their connections database. We are all in this together. Set weekly goals and metrics for yourself so you continue to add connections on a regular basis. Also, join as many groups as you can that are specific to your career selection.
2. Is it wrong to want/have a Social Media site private? For example, my Facebook page is currently private and unsearchable. It seems like a better idea to keep it unsearchable than worry about it.
There is nothing wrong with having a private site. Just be sure nobody can access your stuff through another person. This is where the trouble lies. Information that goes on the Internet is always there, most of the time it may be way down the search engines, but it’s still there.
3. For LinkedIn, is presenting information and descriptions on past work experience and course work more effective in bullet form (just like a resume) or short paragraph form? I have seen both formats used.
A great question. First of all, remember to make your profile searchable. By doing so, you will need to use the entire allotted characters to list the key words and phrases that describe you and what you want to do, since you are a student. Bullet your work experience items and make sure they are located on your profile below your key words and phrases. Paragraph form is harder to read. From a recruiter’s viewpoint, we tend to spend maybe 10 seconds looking for key words and phrases specific to the job requirements.
4. As far as Twitter goes, I understand it’s important to keep what you do professional. But is following people who are not related to a future career a poor decision? For example, I am a huge sports fan, especially hockey. On Twitter, I follow professionals in the social media marketing field as well as many people involved in sports. Is this something I should change and remove the sports individuals?
I would keep doing what you are doing. We all have hobbies and likes and we all enjoy talking about them. Just keep the content clean and professional. If you were a Phillies fan and shared info, I might find it interesting and spend more time looking at your content since I am a huge Phillies fan.
After answering these great questions, a few things Mr. Glose also wanted to point out are...
Add new content on a regular basis to keep yourself high on the search engines..
All the social media tools you use are yours. Make them an extension of what you are about. Just keep the content clean and professional.
Use as many tools as you can. There are dozens you can use to assist in your job search.
Thank you to the students who submitted questions! Career Services would be glad to talk with you individually about your own social media use. Just remember, your online presence can be an excellent supplement to your job search if used well; it can also hold you back if you don’t think before you post.