21 Apr Under 25: Do You Really Stand Out From Your Competition?
As a young professional, the best thing you can do for your career is take every opportunity to manage your social media profiles. In today’s digital world, an employer checks your online presence and behavior before he or she decides to respond to your email or meet you in person. Your online personal brand forms their first impression of you before you have a chance to speak for yourself. With increasing competition among young professionals, college graduates should use every tool available to increase and nurture their professional and personal growth.
Social media has affected the way people interact and network with each other. While you are reading this, a potential employer is searching your name online, checking what you can offer them and what you have accomplished professionally. Companies are looking for candidates who know the importance of networking and the power of digital communication to stay on top in this media-driven world. Engaging on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook is the way for college graduates to connect with employers and mentors, and to stay in the loop regarding career opportunities and advice.
Beyond the Resume
Paper resumes can only contain so much information and are therefore less impactful. Social media sites like LinkedIn have many features to showcase your personal experiences and expertise. They are the perfect place to share details about your study abroad experience in college or the internship where you gained invaluable experience. While employers are looking to hire the person with the best skill set to fill the position, they are also looking for real people with passion and heart. A paper resume simply cannot convey that and shouldn’t be your only tool to distinguish yourself from other young professionals.
For college graduates, a well-planned online presence isn’t just for college graduates’ employment prospects and professional connections. You can use social media to go beyond that! Follow and connect with thought leaders, innovators, business owners, and companies that you admire. Learn their personal and invaluable thoughts and opinions straight from them before a media outlet picks it up (if they do at all). To accelerate your career, look at what the professionals in their career-rising years do (and do it!). In social media, professionals aged 30-49 dominate on LinkedIn. Connect on LinkedIn before other young graduates do and gain advantage over your competitors now.
As a college graduate, you are at the very start of your career and ready to make leaps and bounds in the professional field of your choice. The number of young graduates that are not taking advantage of managing their online presence is tragic. Don’t be one of them. Take control of your personal online brand – take control of your social media.