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The 7 Deadly Social Media Sins: Things Young Professionals Should Never Do On Social Media

By hire-up-staffing in Industry Resources
Today’s age of technology almost already equates to the age of social media and personal branding. Yes, you are a brand. Your name, when searched online, is who you are to those who do not know you. As such, there is a very fine line between the acceptable and unacceptable ways of representing yourself. Often, people are not even aware of this, and most of the time this proverbial line gets blurred.
While it is possible to “clean” up your social media presence, it is far better to avoid these mistakes in the digital world. Here are seven things a young professional should never, ever do online:
Complain About Your Job (or Your Boss and Co-Workers)
People should know better by now, but complaining about work or the people you work with is a basic taboo. It seems like a no-brainer, but for some reason there are still people out there who share negative thoughts about their employer, their job or their co-workers. Putting thoughts like this out there can raise red flags! Even a seemingly harmless tweet or status post like “bored at work” could already cost you your personal brand, no matter what your industry.
Share Too Much Information
There is such a thing as over sharing. It is important to compartmentalize your digital and personal lives – things like personal problems, relationship issues, and basically anything you may consider as TMI should best be kept private.
Post All of Your Partying Shenanigans
Don’t get this wrong – it is fine posting tasteful photos of the fun you had last night with friends. However, when your Facebook or Instagram feed starts to mirror scenes from “The Hangover,” we have a problem here. Not only will your current employer possibly see these, but also prospective future employers! When they see a major stream of partying and drinking photos, even if you did them “all in good fun,” is a sure sign they would probably think you are more of a party animal than a serious employee.
Dive into Controversy
Inserting yourself in touchy, controversial conversations may offend people and hurt your credibility. Nothing is wrong with sharing opinions, but as much as possible do stay clear of topics that may be a little too controversial. This includes race, religion, and politics – your opinion may be offensive, whether you intend it to be or not, and broadcasting this online may become a huge turnoff to potential employers or even give you bad cred at your current job.
Complain a Lot
Going on a venting spree on your Twitter or Facebook may seem tempting, but you don’t want this to be the highlight of your online personality. Again, nothing wrong with sharing a few opinions here and there, but keep your emotions in check – make sure to look before you leap! Think hard about things before hitting that publish button; sending out any negative vibes can and may probably reflect badly on you.
Blatantly Search and Network for a New Job
Aggressively networking for an interview is a definite no-no. Twitter and LinkedIn are great online tools to use in networking with professionals in any industry, but make sure to know the difference between plain old networking and harassing. Spamming your Facebook wall, blatantly tagging people on Twitter, repeatedly sending messages or interview requests to company LinkedIn profiles, those are all too much – it’s not going to land you a job but it will make you come off as very unprofessional. Use these social media tools to interact, or maybe seek out advice, but never to beg for a job.
Reference Anything Illegal
Keep this in mind: if you would not do or say this in front of a police officer, do not post or joke about it on social media. Whether it’s a photo, video, short quip, or anything in between, do not ever post it – consider that career suicide if you do.