In high school and even middle school, teens are told to watch what they say online. Not just because cyber bullying and shaming are a constant risk, but high schools and colleges often use the information from this online image to evaluate the student.
It can be a little thrilling at first to see how you appear when your name is Googled. The images on the first page may or may not even be you! The biggest question is, Do you like what you see? How about what others might see? It is critical that your online image reflect a person that you are ok with yourself, and anyone that might find you, seeing.
Let’s say you are in college student looking to land a really amazing internship or first “real” job. What is the first thing a prospective employer does? They look you up! Depending on the job, and where you are going, the first place they look is LinkedIn. Don’t have a sigh of relief just yet… your Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are next!
Your school may have told you to clean up your presence, and while you can delete accounts and posts, just know the Internet has a permanent memory and given enough digging, it will still show up.
Here are 3 tips to put your best impression forward:
- Profile Photo – The image should be a classy head shot. You should see only you. As cute as your dog or cat are, or your entire squad, they should not be the photo for you.
- Update your Personal Information – Check out each profile associated with your name. What did you use as a description? It should be about your interests, hobbies and likes. These can relate to the professional job you seek, or just gives the viewer a clean view of you.
- Be Consistent – Make sure all social media platforms represent you in the same way. For example, showing photos at a party where you drank too much doesn’t go with a profile that says seeking an opportunity to be a lawyer. Those photos tarnish your online image.
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