Ninja 1: What do my social media profiles say about me?

Facebook

Just like pretty much everyone else who uses it, Facebook is a personal and social platform for me. When I started studying public relations I became savvy to the fact that potential employers might take a look at the things I might get up to and be put off, so I went straight to my privacy settings and made sure nobody could see anything apart from my friends. Job done? Not quite.

It has only been recently that I have begun to see cracks starting to form in my, so thought, solid barrier. If an employer was to try and access my Facebook profile, all they would be able to see is my picture and a link to my website address. The link is no biggie – in fact I would quite like them to see that. But I have never really thought about my profile picture before.

Above you can see my current Facebook Picture. It was taken at the after party for this years London Film Festival and shows me with some of my colleagues. I hadn’t even noticed at first but you can clearly see me with a beer in my hand. Does this reflect badly on me? Would the picture alone jeopardize me being offered a job in the future?

Twitter

As much as I would like to, I really cant get myself into Twitter. In the year and a half that I have had an account I have tweeted 171 times. Not bad at all, yet nowhere near the tens of thousands of tweets that many post in the same time. However, when I set up this account I had planned for it to be a professional outlet from the start – I knew that Twitter doesn’t have the privacy of Facebook and pretty much anyone can see what I post. So, I chose a reasonable picture where I am not drinking or making a stupid face, and I pretty much only ever tweet about industry related topics. Now this surely has to stand me in a good light!

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog, I’d love to hear from you so do comment and vote for which Ninja you would hire on the basis of our social media pictures!

#ninjahireme

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This entry was posted in Ninja 1.

4 comments on “Ninja 1: What do my social media profiles say about me?

  1. Rosie says:

    Hi Ninja 1,

    This is very interesting subject to consider today, since a huge amount of social interaction now takes place online.
    I definitely think people underestimate the amount of information they put on view for all to see, and how such information can reflect on them. There have been many examples of people who think they are freely expressing themselves through social media, only then to find that they have said or done something they shouldn’t have.
    In terms of hiring, I’m not surprised that people will use all resources available to them to assess the character of someone they’ll be working with, including facebook, myspace, and twitter.
    Personally, if I saw that a prospective employee had a profile picture of themselves drunk and/or in an embarrassing pose, I wouldn’t judge them solely on that, since there are heaps of normal people with such profile pictures. I’d wait to actually meet the person before I made a character judgement, and be more concerned with whether they were suited to the job – people are capable of managing separate work and social lives. That’s not to say I wouldn’t ignore the information available on social networking sites; for example, violent/racist/sexist use of language.

    Judging by your profile picture, Ninja 1, I’d say you look like a young sociable guy enjoying yourself. But that’s all it tells me. If there were several other pictures of you like this available to see, it might lead me to place more scrutiny on your dependability.

    If I was forced to choose one of you for a job (lets say PR assistant) purely based on pictures (which would be very strange), I’d have to go with Ninja 3!

    • ninjapr says:

      Hi Rosie,

      I find it very refreshing to hear that you would not judge a candidate too heavily on their social media profiles. I tend to agree with you that in fact a vast majority of people have a photo of them with a drink or doing something silly. From my experience in the PR industry I have learnt that it is a very social job role, and being able to have a drink and socialise can be very important.

      I really like that you pointed out that we are all capable of separating work and our social lives – this is completely true. Just the fact that we like to have a drink and enjoy ourselves once in a while in no way means that we are not mature, responsible and a dedicated worker.

      I am sorry to see that would choose Ninja 3 over myself. But as you pointed out it is difficult to tell to much about a person judging by one photo, and maybe I would stand in a better light with a more professional looking image.

      I have started to wonder that making my Facebook profile private might make it appear as if I am hiding something to anyone who may be ‘screening’ me. Do you believe it would be better for me to keep my profile private or to make it public but seriously monitor the content so it is all professional?

  2. Yelim says:

    I think it’s always important to be careful of what you post on social networks. Even within my friends list I have separated them into groups so that my personal details are only available to my closest friends.
    If I were an employer, a Facebook profile picture would not be a determining factor for me to hire somebody. It is a social network tool where people can socialise with friends via the internet. However, it may depend on the position and roles involved with the job. If the employee was to represent a company via Facebook then a more suitable photograph would be appropriate.

    If I were to employ one of the ninjas, I would choose Ninja 1. You seem very sociable and a fun person to be around.

    • ninjapr says:

      Hello Yelim,

      You have brought a good point to my attention straight away! Since completing some work experience in the PR industry over the summer I have invited many of my former colleagues to be my friend on Facebook – this means they have access to all my information. I could be a little worried as they are potential future employers. However, having worked with them for an extended period of time, I feel that they know me as a person, both socially and professionally, and I do not feel like I need to hide anything from them. Having said that it is better to be safe than sorry and you never know what might happen. Perhaps it would be a good idea for me to take a page out of your book and put them all into a group and limit their access. What do you think?

      Thank you for your kind words and thank you for choosing me as your candidate of choice!

      Best,

      Ninja 1!

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