Have you ever googled yourself? There are plenty of articles out there saying you should never do it, or you should do it all the time, but have you done it? You know future employers are going to, so why wouldn’t you?
Wondering what it would be like for a co-worker or future employer to search for me I did a quick search and the screen grab is to the right. It’s mostly me; 75% of it is links directly to something I’ve put online.
Recently, I’ve spent a lot of time reflecting on my online presence: my blog (geoffwhaley.com), Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and LinkedIn. I have a pretty robust online presence and I made a conscious decision when I started my blog over five years ago to keep that presence public.
I don’t do or write about anything illegal; I don’t do or write about anything too controversial; and I definitely draw a line between my professional time and my personal time. And yet, here I am wondering if all of this openness will hinder future career prospects.
My answer: No.
Why? I won’t allow it.
I love what I do: development (fundraising) and alumni relations. I am excited to grow and progress within my career and I have no intentions of turning my blog into a book or my passions into a marketing career.
What I have found over the past five plus years of blogging about books and culture, personal passions, and participating in various social media platforms is I am much more capable and confident in doing my job within the career I’ve chosen.
I’ve narrowed this idea down to three thematic reasons: hard skills, people and networking skills, and establishing individuality.
These might sound vague and they’re meant to, for now at least, but as I look into each one over the next few weeks I plan to explain why each is important to me personally. And I plan to explain how they add value to my current and future employers, as well as to my own professional career.
Do you have an online presence under your real name? Is social media or blogging a concern for you? What do you do to bridge this seeming hurdle when it comes to career progression?