Thinking About Your Digital Footprint in 2017

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A few years ago, the trend of "Googling yourself" was at an all-time high. But consider today's social landscape. Do you know what's out there? When's the last time you logged into your LinkedIn profile or checked your Facebook privacy settings? Does it reflect your search for a health care career?

A Career Builder study found that nearly 60 percent of employers, including those for a health care career, now turn to social networks to research job applicants. We want all our Concorde graduates to have the best shots possible at landing that health care career.

According to a business News Daily article, "While they might not be specifically looking for negative posts, nearly half of the hiring managers surveyed said they have found information on social media that has convinced them not to hire a candidate. The top types of posts that left employers with a bad impression include:

  • Provocative or inappropriate photographs, videos or other information
  • Information about a candidate drinking or using drugs
  • Discriminatory comments related to race, religion, gender, etc.
  • Bad-mouthing of a previous company or fellow employee
  • Poor communication skills

Audit yourself

That's a nice way of saying "Google yourself." See what others can see by searching your first and last name in quotes.

You'll also find out who else shares your name and if you need to be aware of any cross-contamination when it comes to your reputation. If you're really cautious, you can also set up Google alerts.

Likewise, audit your social media presence. Remember that LinkedIn profile that you forgot about setting up years ago? It's actually doing you more harm than good. LinkedIn is algorithmically-designed to show up in the first three results of Google in a named search.

What does your Facebook page look like? Does it speak well to your health care career capabilities? It might be wise to revisit your privacy settings and tagging privileges. Facebook has a feature where a user can choose to hold pictures from being tagged without their approval. See others that concern you? Have a chat with the person who posted it and let them know you'd appreciate it if they removed it or untagged you. If they care about you, they'll understand.

Set reminders to update

There are sections to every profile on social media. From About Me to Favorite Quotes, most users don't give those a second look after they initially set up their account.

When a potential health care career connection clicks to see more, what will they find? Will they read what you were into as a high school graduate or read about some inside joke between you and your bestie? Make sure that sections are reflective of you and your current aspirations.

Don't post when you're angry, depressed or exhausted

It really goes for all types of communication, but it's particularly important in a digital age where deleting doesn't mean unable to be found again. When our emotions are running high, it's best not to memorialize them with a status - especially if it's dealing with a coworker, difficult patient or stressful day. Rather than launching frustration onto the Interweb, have a few trusted friends on speed dial. You'll be happy you did!

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