It’s the night before your interview, and you’ve taken all the steps to make sure everything is in order. Your shirt is ironed, your resume is up-to-date, and you’ve rehearsed potential interview questions in your head all afternoon. However, don’t make the mistake of overlooking one final, crucial step—cleaning up your social media.
Check the Depths of Your Social Media for Questionable Posts
Many people don’t realize that their social media posts can come back to haunt them years later. You might not think that something silly you said in your junior year of high school could cost you a job, but think again. Many people have missed out on their dream job because a potential employer found something offensive buried deep within their social media pages.
Some common “questionable” topics are: negative remarks about past employers, politically charged posts, intolerant comments, and tasteless jokes. Use your best judgment, and scrap anything that could potentially hurt your chances of getting the job.
It can be time consuming to go all the way back to the beginning, but it’s worth the trouble if it means preventing a potential employer from finding an offensive post. Scanning through all your status updates on any active profiles can potentially prevent a disaster.
Delete Photos That Send the Wrong Message
After you’ve cleaned up all your old posts, it’s time to go through your photos. Like you did with your status updates, you should go back to the beginning and focus on filtering out undesirable content. If you find some sentimental-but-questionable old photos that you can’t bare to delete, make sure you set the album to private—or better yet, save them to your hard drive and erase them from the internet.
Make Sure Your Profile Photo is Appropriate
Even though it’s not necessarily your potential employer’s business what you do in your free time, they’re probably going to judge you for it anyway. If your profile photo is a shot of you holding a can of beer or making a goofy face, now is the time to change it. It’s best to select a profile photo that portrays you in a professional, mature way.
Be Mindful of Your Tagged Posts and Photos
Now that you’ve got your own profile under control, it’s time to clean up any potential messes your friends may have made for you. Employers know that who you hang around with says a lot about you, so they’re going to be paying attention to the people who frequently tag you. Make sure you haven’t been tagged in any controversial posts or photos. If you find that you have, be sure to un-tag yourself before your interview.
Cleaning Up Your Social Media is Worth the Effort
Cleaning up your social media in a pinch may seem stressful at first, but if you follow these tips, you’ll be well on your way to landing your dream job. Next time you feel like posting something careless, remember that anything you say on social media can end up costing you a job 10 years later. Use your social media accounts to showcase your best qualities, and to seem like the kind of person your dream company would want to hire!