Tag Archives: social media

Unspoken Rules About the 8-to-5 Workday

EntryLevelLifeButton_A Transitioning into the workforce from school or switching from one career to a new one can be a scary move. It’s a big step, but one that you can easily make with a few pointers. Each job has certain rules and procedures that are common knowledge, but you might not have heard them outright or saw them on your orientation agenda. So, take note of these tips to you navigate the workday without breaking the rules. Following these rules will show your employer that you want to do a good job and be an employee they can’t live without.

Don’t be late. Check and double check your work schedule and be sure you’re at work on time. Showing up late – even five or ten minutes – could earn you a negative reputation. There are some environments that are more laid back with their attendance policy, but others are sticklers about not being a minute late. Be sure you know your company’s culture and don’t assume because co-workers are late it’s OK to follow their lead. You want to set a good example so you can get ahead, not follow a bad example because that could get you in trouble.   

Run errands on your own time. When you’re at work, you are there to work. Running errands on your lunch break is fine, but don’t use company time to go to the post office, grocery store, take a shopping trip to the mall, etc. The company pays you to work for them, so they expect you to work and produce results.

Avoid regular personal calls. The workplace is not the best place to spend significant time making or accepting personal phone calls. As many employees share workspace with other co-workers, make it a point to keep your personal affairs to yourself. Calling your best friend to have a casual conversation about an upcoming date is not appropriate. When you’re on company time, let friends and family know to leave you a message if they call you during the day and you will return their message when you leave for lunch or after work. If you do have to take a phone call at work, go to an area where you won’t be bothering anyone and limit the amount of time you spend on the phone. Check out more information about cell phone etiquette in the office

Know the policy on social media. With so many people having a social media profile on a site like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Myspace, it’s easy to stay connected and see what your friends are doing during the day. Before you decide to log-in and check one of those sites while at work, be sure you know you’re company’s policy regarding social media. You never know if someone is monitoring your internet activity. If they see you logging-in to Facebook during the day, you could get reported to your manager if it’s against the rules.

Keep loud music down. If you listen to music while you work, use headphones in public or shared spaces. Listening to music can help you feel more energized and can help you eliminate distractions. Just remember to keep the volume at a reasonable level so you don’t distract or aggravate any co-workers and you can still hear someone if they call your name. If you work in a factory or shipping facility, check your safety policy on this and make sure your earphones don’t create a safety hazard. You need to be able to hear what’s going on around you.

These are just a few of the many things to be aware of when it comes to workplace behavior and how to function during the workday. Be respectful of your company’s time, money and resources by following policies on issues like attendance, work breaks, and social media. On company time, you have to follow company policy. When you have a job, it’s important to keep in mind that you should adjust your habits to fit your employer during working hours, not vice versa.

What Do Your Social Media Sites Reveal About You?

EntryLevelLifeButton_E Facebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. How many of these social media networking sites are you using? One? All three? More? Today, social media is a hot topic when it comes to making connections. But, these sites are not just useful for socializing with friends and peers. You can also use them to help build your personal brand and aid your job search. Employers are becoming savvy in using these tools in the recruiting process. When it comes to hiring managers, 53% use social networks to perform background checks on employees, so it’s important to keep your social media sights professional, because you never know which employer could be looking at you.

So, take a minute to freshen up on the overall purpose of the three most popular social networks and learn general rules for professional social networking.

Facebook. 
Facebook is primarily a place where people can socialize and connect with friends and family. You can upload pictures, post videos, and update your status to keep people aware of what you’re doing. You can control who sees what on Facebook – to an extent. This site has developed many new features since its humble beginning as a way for students at Harvard to stay in touch. Facebook quickly expanded so that any student with a college e-mail address could participate. From there, it grew to allow anyone with an e-mail address to be able to join Facebook. Today, your friends, professors, elementary school teachers, bosses, and possibly even your parents are on Facebook. This year, Facebook beat out Google as one of the most searched websites in the U.S.
 
LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is more professional than Facebook. It is designed to showcase your resume, skills, and contacts. The site also enables you to stay in touch with colleagues and helps you network with other professionals in your field or industry of interest. On this site, the profile focus is primarily on you skills, experience, aspirations, and expertise. what you do for a living, or what you would like to do, and showcasing your résumé online.

Twitter. 
Twitter allows you to post short messages, information, links, and more in real time to your followers. You can choose whose tweets you want to follow and allow others to follow yours as well, unless you have your profile set to private. Twitter messages “tweets” are just short – 140 characters or less. An example of a tweet is: Downtown for the marketing association’s annual convention. Each tweet is updated on each follower’s home page, allowing them to see your message, share it, or reply back to it. It’s a great, and quick way, to find information, connect with those in your field of interest, and showcase your knowledge.

General Rules.
Did you know that 53% of all hiring managers use social networks to perform background checks on employees? So, if you interviewed for a job and end up being one of the top candidates, some employer may search your online references, such as Facebook and LinkedIn to learn more about you. If they looked at your Facebook profile, what would your pictures tell a potential employer about you? 

An estimated 80% of employers want employees and job candidates to know how to use social networking tools.
 
If you don’t have any social networking profiles created, it’s never too late to get started. LinkedIn is focused on sharing your resume and skills with others. Twitter is a great account to sign up for because it allows you to easily and quickly share information at once. Facebook is mainly used to help you connect with friends and family, so use this account cautiously as a job seeker.

The more connections you have, the better. Just keep in mind to actually focus on building quality relationships with your connections. Start placing more focus on your social media networks today and start growing your contacts.

Does Online or In-Person Networking Work Best? The Surprising Results of Poll

With so much focus on social networking and the job search, we wanted to know in our latest poll what you think works best – in person or online networking.

The results of the poll – posted and shared online – may be surprising.

A total of 477 readers responded to the poll, which asked “Which is most effective?”

A huge majority thought in-person networking works best.

Here’s how the results came back:

  • 21.4 % selected “Networking online.”
  • 78.6 % selected “Networking in person.”

But, as our readers shared, that’s not to say that networking online isn’t important. Their comments reinforced the value of balancing both in-person and online networking.

Networking Balance is Key

Reader Chuck Rice responded, “I don't know that you can do one or the other. Face to face will always continue to be important, however online networking is better for staying in touch and discussing a variety of topics to a larger audience. I've found that seeing a post or message from someone in the middle of my business day causes me to act immediately, as long as I've built some face to face relationship.”

Other commentators shared the value of networking online to expand your relationships beyond where time and travel costs allow with traditional networking.

When it comes to networking, it’s clear that balance is key. With all the focus and attention on social media and technology these days, don’t underestimate the value of meeting people face-to-face. Use both in-person and online networking tactics to get the best of both options. Putting all your eggs in one networking basket could limit your opportunities, so carefully plan time for each type of networking in your professional life.

What are your thoughts? Can you afford to rely on just one type of networking these days to build your personal brand, advance in your career, and find great opportunities?

Who’s Spying on You Online?

With online networking websites continuing to grow at rapid speeds, doesn’t it sometimes seem that you have more friends/connections online than you know in real life? There’s that coworker you met very briefly at the companywide meeting. Another random person you met at the baseball game who has a LinkedIn account and works in your industry. Your sister’s best friend, her boyfriend, and his cousin. That guy who used to sit alone in your American History class in high school. This list goes on and on. Your online network could grow to hundreds of thousands of people, but would this allow for effective networking and relationship building?

Building a large network of connections is a good thing, and yes, that’s the purpose of most social media tools. But, it’s important to remember to be conscious of what information you do and do not post on your profile when using social media sites. Some sites, such as Facebook, are more heavily focused on socializing and staying connected to your friends. But did you know that many employers are hopping on the social media bandwagon too?

You never know who will see what you post online. It always seems there is someone who knows someone who knows you.To help you with your social media, here are a few basic rules to follow.

Learn about privacy settings. The first rule for using any social media site is to know what the privacy settings are. You might want to set your profile so that it can only be viewed by your friends. This way, once you have approved someone to be a friend, only then can they have access to your information and pictures. If they’re not a friend, they can’t access any information from you. This gives you some control over who sees your profile and who doesn’t.

After-hour pictures. Yes, everyone has a personal life outside of work, and what you do in your free time is your choice. But, realize that if you post party pictures, a co-worker or someone who interviewed you for a job might be able to see those photos. Another thing to keep in mind is that your friends can post things on your profile. On some sites like Facebook, friends can tag photos of you, so just make sure to do check-ups on your site to see what others might have posted about you.  Remember that your networking profiles are a reflection of you, so use your best judgment when it comes to the featured content.

Spell check. Even if you are not a journalist or in a communication-related field, make sure you don’t have a lot of misspelled words on your profiles. Typos and misspellings could communicate a careless attitude or sloppiness – two things you don’t want to convey in the professional world.

Social media can be a great tool for staying connected, learning new industry tips, and showing that you are up-to-speed on current trends. In the digital age, personal and professional can overlap. So, use these tips to make sure you maintain a balanced online image. It’s always a good idea to put your best foot forward by always being professional, even in your personal life. To learn more, view our guide on social media for business leaders.

Skills to Help Brand Your Online Identity

Webster’s dictionary defines identity as, “the state or fact of being a specific person or thing; individuality; or the state of being as described.” Think of the things related to your profession that you excel at. Are you a PR professional, a budding scientist, or a math guru? What is your career identity? Now, what is my online career identity?

 According to an article on CareerBuilder, four out of five hiring managers search for job applicants online in an attempt to learn more about that person. This same article also states that anyone, regardless of where you are in your working career, should have a strong online identity. How do you do this?

1. Identify How and Where You Want to Brand Yourself

With today’s social media, you have many avenues in which you can build your online identity. However, don’t try to build your brand on every site. Be specific, and look for those sites that relate to your industry and profession. If you’re an engineer, it won’t do you any good to be a member of Greatest Chef’s of the World.com. Also, if you’re on 100 different social media networking sites, it might send the wrong impression that you don’t understand social networking or that you have too much time on your hands. Keep things relevant to you and your abilities.

2. Create Personal Social Networking Accounts

Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Myspace. This list can go on and on. These sites aren’t just for social purposes. They can help enhance your career. On these sites, you can list your interests, education, and employment information. They also allow you to make connections with others in your industry and communicate with each other. You can also update your status which is blasted out to all your connections, keeping them updated about what you’re doing.

These are great tools for sharing information about your industry, learning new skills, and building relationships. But, be careful and keep things professional even though these are social networking sites. One small mistake could ruin the positive image you’re trying to build. 

3. Blog

Somewhere online you can find blogs specifically related to your industry or that provide information that interests you. Today, many online business newsletters are in a blog format. Someone posts an announcement or article and you are able to make provide feedback. Take advantage of this and write comments back on those postings. Not only are you sharing your knowledge and building your credibility, but it also gets your name out there to others who are reading the blog. You’re identifying yourself and your expertise.

Social media is ever growing and it changes quickly. Sign up to receive publications from your industry to stay aware of what things are happening in your career field and learn how these types of communication can be applied. When it comes to your career, don’t forget that your number one asset is you. How do you want to be branded?  

Using Twitter to Help Your Job Search

In this day and time, there are many online social networking sites you can use to aid in your job search. And no matter which social media site you prefer, when used to it’s full potential, finding a job can be just a few connections, tweets, or friend requests away.

One particular social networking site that has gained popularity not only among individuals over the past year, but with employers as well, is Twitter. With job boards becoming overcrowded with job ads, employers have flocked to Twitter to list job openings. It’s not only more economical for businesses, but it also allows prospective employers to target social-media savvy job seekers.

If you’re looking for a competitive edge in the job market, try these tips in utilizing Twitter to help in your job search.

Create a professional profile. To get started, first create a professional profile on your Twitter account that lists your experience and expertise. Experts suggest putting a job pitch in your Twitter bio to help attract prospective employers. You can also link to a professional blog or profile on another networking site for more exposure, such as your personal LinkedIn account.

Post tweets. Before you connect with anyone, make sure you have something intriguing to say. Don’t tweet about what you ate for breakfast – instead, tweet about the industry you’re trying to land a job in, an idea that invites interest, or share a link to an intriguing article of substance. Once you have some substantial tweets on your account, you’re ready to connect with business leaders and other Twitter followers in your industry. 

Connect with recruiters and businesses. Once your Twitter account is created and you have tweets posted, start connecting with prospective employers and recruiters. This will help give you a heads up on potential job openings as well as an inside look into company chatter. And, don’t stop with hiring managers and recruiters. Connect with employees of companies you’re interested in. Also, connect with professionals from your industry and metro area so you are expanding your offline network to your online presence. This will give you even more networking opportunities and a leg up if a job does arise because you will know more people on the inside.

Educate yourself on Twitter applications. Twitter is not a difficult tool to learn, but there are several applications you can use to assist you in your job search. Check out these 15 Twitter applications that will help you get the most value out of your Twitter account and increase your chances of job search success.

The growing popularity of Twitter and the benefits offered are luring more than just social-media minded individuals. This site is attracting job seekers, employers looking for prospective employees, recruiters, and industry leaders. This social media site allows job seekers to meet in an informal setting and interact one-on-one with recruiters and hiring managers without an awkward feeling of trying to connect with professionals, like on other social media networking sites. So, try these tips when setting up your Twitter account to help in your job search.

For more job search, career, and workplace advice, follow Express on Twitter today.