Pathways to Professionalism

As we delve deeper into the 21st century, we have to find a balance between recreational and professional usage of social media platforms, as our online presence is becoming a more and more intrinsic part in the job hunting and recruitment process. Huang et al. (2015) stated that creating an organised visualisation of our person is an indispensible method in making positive advancements to our lives. Thus, the web is key in offering tremendous professional potential if we understand how to use it to our advantage.

First and foremost, I’ve found that linking together every social media platform that you use is critical in developing a sense of authenticity and accountability. For instance, from this blog you can easily access my LinkedIn via a button and view my Twitter feed through my widget. Moreover, I also tend to use the same display picture across all my networks, so that I am easily identifiable (although, having an unique name helps too!)

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Being half way through my UOSM2008 journey, I have decided that keeping a blog is invaluable in expressing personal opinions and, therefore, exhibiting your enthusiasm in a dedicated field of expertise (TheEmployable, 2014). Blogging also showcases your writing style, a skill that many employers review you by, according to Jobvite (2014). Overall, however, it is your aim to be the stand out candidate. Look at Adam Pacitti for example: he went outside the box to land himself his ideal job. How about starting a video blog (vlog) or creating a digital portfolio on Pathbrite? There is an abundance of ways to parade your talents on the web, whilst still maintaining highly professional standards.head_employadam

Although the goal is to be as authentic as possible, it is also important to sift through the things that you would not like your potential employers to see… Moving towards a professional online presence would not work entirely in your favour if every photo after a night out were easily accessible, would it? Further statistics provided by Jobvite showed that, in 2014, employers were said to have increased their social networking recruitment methods by 73% – so it is fundamental to build your digital profiles as professionally as possible. As I mentioned earlier, you have to ensure that your personal life isn’t getting entangled in the professional spider’s web that you worked so hard to spin together.

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 References:

Huang, D., Tory, M., Adriel Aseniero, B., Bartram, L., Bateman, S., Carpendale, S., Tang, A. & Woodbury, R., 2015. Personal visualization and personal visual analytics, IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, 21(3), p.420-433.

Jobvite, 2014. 2014 Social Recruiting Survey. [online] Available at: <https://www.jobvite.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Jobvite_SocialRecruiting_Survey2014.pdf&gt; [Accessed: 6th March 2015]

TheEmployable, 2014. How blogging can help you get a job. [online] Available at: <http://www.theemployable.com/index.php/2014/10/28/blogging-can-help-get-job/&gt; [Accessed: 6th March 2015]

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8 thoughts on “Pathways to Professionalism

  1. Tat, I enjoyed your blog post and think the idea of linking all your social media sites/pages to your blog is very important. Similarly in my blog, I discuss the requirement to have a Twitter account connected to one’s professional presence online. It’s an incredible tool for professional self-promotion, particularly if you have a blog website like yourself.

    Adam Picitti is a good example to highlight, as he is a man that used the internet and social media to promote himself successfully. The famous billboard he paid for drew much needed media attention, as this is an incredibly maverick example of self-marketing. There is another excellent, and quite sweet example of a US husband purchasing expensive billboard space to help his wife get a job. Have a look for yourself!

    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/business/2012/08/husband-surprises-wife-with-billboard-to-help-her-job-search/

    The media attention these publicity stunts bring, tends to pay dividends! I’m not sure how professional these stunts are however, as I would have thought it highlights desperation?

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    1. Hi Andy, thank you for your feedback!

      I agree – Twitter is an increible microblogging tool. Admittedly, I use it for more social purposes but I will definitely start using the #UOSM2008 hashtag to promote my blog more within the blogging community!

      I love the article you linked me too, it’s a great read. Saying that, I also agree that these dramatic self-promotion feats can be be seen as a little desperate. However, I was using mine as a more theatrical case study to draw attention to the fact that nowadays you really need to be the stand out candidate amongst your competitors! I can’t imagine that this trick would work more than once either.

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  2. Great blog post Tatiana, from the very beginning I was already made to wonder about how many benefits the web can have for those who seek to truly explore its potential, possibly leaving those wishing to go about the job-hunting process in a more traditional manner feeling more than a little stranded.
    Do you think that this might always necessarily be a good thing? I suppose corporations must do their best to source devoted and interested applicants, but maybe it is also a way to further bias any application procedure. For example when studying Labour Economics in the Netherlands I came across the phenomenon of if ladies or gentlemen are going through application procedures, that they would be more inclined to both turn down attractive applicants of the same gender, and be more inclined to give interviews to attractive members of the opposite! Another issue with information being more public is discrimination based on names appearing more foreign or professors in the US being more likely to address queries from men than women in the university system.
    Because of this, might this slew of information be a double-edged sword, which may prove to hinder some job prospects, whilst boosting others, depending on their compatibility with web openness, and a person’s personal brand.

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    1. Hi Jens,

      Thank you for the really interesting response.

      In terms of using the web, as opposed to more traditional methods, for job hunting, I believe that online recruitment is simply overtaking. Even if the person seeking employment hands in a paper CV, the employer KNOWS to do a quick Google search of their name. So, it seems as if hiding your online presence just cannot be avoided in these digital days.

      The case study on the Netherlands & US really shocked me. It’s appalling that this kind of petty discrimination is still happening. To alleviate this problem, I would urge people to consider checking the ‘prefer to not say’ boxes when it come to stating gender, religion or ethnicity, as these characteristics should not play a role in the recruiters choice. Or reconsider applying to companies that use these non-inclusive methods. As long as you remain true to yourself when create a professional online presence, and are sure you won’t be caught out on any little white lies, then I’m sure your employability status is maximised 🙂

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