How Not to Move Back in With Your Parents

Employment & Internships Podcast Episodes

Social Media
Social Media Tip

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Listen to this week's episode where Pete and Alex are joined by author Kyle Lacy to talk about how your social media presence can help and/or hurt your financial future.

Read the Show Notes

Most people don’t think about the impact that one simple social media post might have on their future. No doubt you’ve seen athletes, celebrities, and corporations getting into hot water over something they said in 140 characters or less or a photo that they put online. Also, you’ve probably seen instances where other people have posted photos or videos with celebrities that show them engaging in activities that could hurt their profile.

We live in a time where social media is a tool that almost everyone uses, and many use it to their detriment. Take a moment to look through your past Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, etc., posts and see how many things fall under this umbrella:

I don’t think my mom would approve of this

The scary thing is that employers are looking at your social media profiles, checking to see if you have the character that their organization is looking for. Take a listen to Pete’s example of turning down an intern applicant because of an inappropriate comment he made on Twitter. It’s possible that was the only inappropriate message this person ever wrote, but to Pete it was a sign that this person could do it again. If this person happened to be working for Pete when another Tweet came out, it could look reflect poorly on Pete and his business…so Pete chose not to take that risk. Essentially, your posts, photos, videos, etc., provide a glimpse into your character and if there’s something on there employers don’t like, your financial future will be forever altered because you will have a harder time finding employment.

Another negative way in which social media can hurt your finances is by posting personal information about yourself that others can use to impersonate you, or take advantage of a situation you’ve announced. Burglars have been known to check social media to find people who are currently out of town. If they have enough information about where those people live, they’ll burglarize the house, since they know nobody is there. Posting information about a vacation may seem harmless, but it’s better to play it safe. In addition to you location, also be careful about what potentially sensitive information you make public. Remove your birthday from your profiles, don’t post photos of the address of your house/apartment, your schedule, or anything that is an identifier of you. All of these pieces of information could be used against you by others.

Of course, social media doesn’t have to be all bad. Social media can be a great tool for you to promote yourself in a positive way. As Pete and Alex discuss with social media expert Kyle Lacy, developing a brand for yourself through social media can show to prospective employers that you have a lot to contribute to their organization. If you start while you’re in school and build it up over the years before you graduate, you can list your social media presence on your resume.

The important thing to remember is your contributions to social media can have a positive/negative impact on your finances. Following the rule of asking yourself, “Would I want my mom to see this?” before you post is a good way of keeping yourself on the safe side. Listen to Pete, Alex, and Kyle as they give you some great advice on what you can do to avoid a social media catastrophe and build a brand that could financially benefit you for years to come.