Thursday, May 14, 2009

When in Doubt, Take it Out! Social Media Users - Beware of Your Content

Blogs, facebook, My Space YouTube, Twitter, Diggs, and more. Millions of people use social media outlets to share personal information, some minute-by-minute. To some of us, they have become addictions, like the "Crackberry!"
  • Whether we are obsessively connecting on facebook or responding to Tweets delivered to our iPhones, we seem to forget - or disregard - the fact that we have no expectation of privacy in this manner of connecting.
  • That's particularly true when we are at work or looking for work.
  • Last September, I gave job seekers eight tips for using facebook. Take a look.
Job seekers aren't the only ones who need to be mindful of their postings. We know employers increasingly use these new technologies to check the backgrounds of job applicants. But, senior management also read blogs, monitor their facebook accounts, and follow Twitter. Clients and customers - the same.
  • Have you ever written that you had too much to drink the night before and called in sick? Posted photos that could be offensive to others? Used profanity in exchanges with others? Probably.
  • Have you thought about who's reading your musings? That's right. Co-workers. Clients. Customers. Are they laughing? Maybe not so much.
Employees and job seekers take note:
  1. When in Doubt, Take it Out!
  2. No bare skin photos or videos. That's right. Lose the skimpy bathing suits.
  3. No photos or videos of excessive drinking or partying.
  4. No foul language.
  5. No negative comments about co-workers, customers, or clients.
  6. Remember, the standard is NOT what you think is appropriate. It's what employers, clients, colleagues, and customers think.
  7. Be smart. Keep your job.
Randi S. Lewis Founder, Resume Boutique LLC ~ 410.602.2500 ~ © Resume Boutique LLC 2009. All rights reserved.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Job Search Etiquette: Nay to the Word, "Hey!"

The word, "HEY," is an informal way of saying, "HELLO." When you are in the job search process, should you use that word to address your potential employer? Our clients have asked us that question more frequently in this competitive economic climate - particularly in the context of exchanging emails.
Our Answer Remains the Same: Don't Use the Word "Hey"
Always be safe. Address people as Dear Mr. or Mrs. You can't go wrong with that. If your professional setting is much more informal, then use the words, "Hi" or "Hello." But, it depends on the industry. In the young tech world and in the entertainment industry, the rules are more relaxed. To be sure, we asked employers who are on the front lines of the hiring process to tell us their thoughts. Here's what five of them said:
  1. Fifty year old lawyer and former Recruitment Committee Chair: "I am old school so my answer is no way."
  2. Forty-something Recruitment Manager for Professional Services Firm: "Using 'hey' to address an employer is too informal and an immediate turnoff. It leaves me with a bad impression."
  3. Thirty-something New York Casting Director: "I use it all the time, including in my emails to full-time job and summer internship applicants. I went back and looked at my emails after you posed the question and I noticed that most young people responded with a word other than 'hey' even when I used it as a greeting. I am fine with the word but I guess it's more respectful to use 'hi' or 'hello' when you are not in the driver's seat."
  4. Forty-something Medical Practice Administrator: "I absolutely detest when people use that word and I would find it very disrespectful if an applicant sent me an email addressing me with the word, 'hey.'"
  5. Forty-something Human Resources Director for Fortune 100 Business: "Hey is for horses. Don't ever be that informal in the interview process and don't write that in any email or correspondence if you want to work with our company."
  6. Twenty-something Tech Entrepreneur: "Depends on the industry. In tech? Yes, by all means."

For more interview tips and advice, contact Randi Lewis, Founder, Resume Boutique LLC, at 410.602.2500

© 2009 by Resume Boutique LLC. All rights reserved.