Being smart about social media and recruiting

lego_headhunterSocial media can be helpful in the recruiting process. Like any other tool for job searching (resumes, cover letters, etc.), social media is another weapon in your arsenal to effectively market yourself. However, you need to remember that it is a tool, not the be-all and end-all.

In other words, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are useful when they reinforce the overarching message about what you offer to the legal hiring market. That message still needs to be crafted carefully based upon a realistic assessment of who you are, what you have done and the skills you bring—just as it would be for any cover letter or resume you would draft.

A few additional points to consider:

The fundamentals still apply

Regardless how fancy you may make your LinkedIn or Facebook profile, you still need to have skills and experience. Legal employers hire attorneys based upon their ability to do the work—not for their skills in creative profile drafting.

Professionalism counts—a lot

Although your profile might seem less “formal” than a cover letter, remember that the audiences are largely the same. The ease of access and relative informality of social media can lull you into lowering your guard. Keep descriptions brief, to the point and accurate. Avoid colloquialisms and jargon. No puffery. Etc.

Keep it current

Your profile can be an easy way to update potential employers and your network about your latest endeavors. Review it periodically to make sure you have included everything you want known about you in the public sphere.

If you are new to social networking, check out our Facebook 101 post.

Do You Pass the Social Media Recruitment Test? | Mashable

(photo: oskay)


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  • Couple photo tips for Facebook:

    1. Before posting a picture of yourself, ask: “do I want a future employer to see this?”
    2. Sign up for email alerts when you are tagged in a picture. Keep a close eye on those alerts. Ask question #1.

  • Dr. Shaun Jamison

    If you are unemployed in the Twin Cities, check out the free seminars on using to find a job from Project Link it Forward

  • Steve Marchese

    Nena is absolutely right. Pictures are fraught with peril, particularly on Facebook. It also raises the question how much you want to mix your personal and business personas on Facebook. Some people believe they should be one and the same. If so, that raises other concerns about appropriate disclosure of personal information, control of that information and access.

  • Chris_

    On the FB picture-tagging point, it’s important to remember lots of attorneys at local firms can still belong to their school’s “network.” They might have gone to your school, so restricting access only to “friends of friends” or to people on your network is not a way to hide all those pictures of you getting trashed in college.