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If we’ve learnt anything from the election of Trump this week, it’s that no matter how unqualified you are, with an unauthentic yet strategic approach, you can be whoever you want to be. In the professional online world the same could be said, it’s easy to fabricate your experiences and tweak your views, but in both instances the outcome will be a mismatched relationship that will ultimately yield negative consequences – so let’s stick to authenticity, for the good of politics as well as the digital world.

In creating and developing an authentic professional online profile, you will not only increase your employment opportunities, but you will stand a higher chance of finding the right employer. This is something that brings with it increased levels of innovation, performance and job satisfaction, benefiting you and the business world synonymously (Tapscott, 2014).

But what exactly does a professional online profile comprise of? This infographic can give us some insight.

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Although Linkedin is the front-runner in terms of overall use for hiring managers (as expected), Facebook and Twitter also have a relatively large influence on social recruitment. It is therefore key that despite their ‘unprofessional origins’, we now acknowledge these mediums as elements of our professional profile and manage them accordingly. The Justine Sacco case demonstrates an example of how ignoring this aspect of Twitter can have devastating consequences upon your professional life. So perhaps we should consider what our employers would think the next time we write a tweet or post on Facebook.

I was disappointed to see blogs have played a small role for those recruiting, as they are a fantastic way to showcase creativity, passion and dedication (Theemployable, 2014). Personally, I would clearly guide hiring managers towards my blog, as I believe it provides a transparent view of my own authentic professional online identity.

In this video with the BBC, Michael Weiss offers his advice upon having a ‘brand’ across all platforms, to enrich one’s professional profile. The key points to be taken are choosing the story you want to tell, make it consistent across all mediums through your images and text and not over supplying information; chose key points and stand by them. Njeri Watkins, a social media expert, speaks in depth about her advice for developing your professional online identity in this video. Unsurprisingly, her views echo those of Weiss.

So keep blogging, tweeting and posting on Facebook and be sure not to miss out on the huge potential Linkedin offers. But across all these platforms, ensure you remain authentic, individual, consistent and sensible and as a result you can expect to reap the rewards a professional profile offers.


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References:

Jobvite. (2014). Social Recruiting. Available: https://www.jobvite.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Jobvite_SocialRecruiting_Survey2014.pdf. Last accessed 12/11/2016.

Ronson, J. (2015). How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life.Available: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/15/magazine/how-one-stupid-tweet-ruined-justine-saccos-life.html?_r=2. Last accessed 12/11/2016.

Tapscott, D. (2014). Five Ways Talent Management Must Change.Available: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2014/10/don-tapscott-talent-management-millennials/. Last accessed 12/11/2016.

The Employable. (2014). How Blogging Can Help You Get A Job.Available: http://www.theemployable.com/index.php/2014/10/28/blogging-can-help-get-job/. Last accessed 12/11/2016.

Videos:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yLzwQs4M_0

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-25217962

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