Businesses around the globe have been jumping on the social media band wagon. They each have a different reason for doing it: increase sales, increase customer service levels, increase brand awareness…Companies have corporate Fan pages on Facebook, blogs, Twitter accounts and are trying to figure out this new technology.
So as corporate America tries to leverage this new communication vehicle, we too, as individuals need to determine how we will use it. Will it be to increase our personal brand, connect and network with existing contacts and new people, learn new things or find jobs. I don’t really think “not playing” is an option any longer. We fought email, we fought online job boards, but eventually they won.
Companies are also establishing “usage” policies for their employees. A survey published by Robert Half, Whistle – But don’t Tweet – while you work, says that 54% of employers do not allow the use of social media sites to be used during working hours. Hey, it is new, what do you expect. This is likely to change.
However, just because it may not be allowed in the workplace, doesn’t mean it isn’t something you can participate in during your free time.
Refine your LinkedIn profile. Join Groups and get the weekly digest of activities. Have these updates and digests sent to an email account or RSS feed so you can access them when you have time. You can determine how often you want to engage and perhaps if you see something of interest, you can join in or benefit.
Consider these personal usage questions:
- How often will you use social media?
- What social media tools you will use?
- What is your purpose for being on this tool (keeping track of family, learning new things, meeting new people, sharing knowledge, developing personal brand?)
- What is your policy for connecting, friending, linking or following people?
Once you have a strategy or plan, it makes it much easier to use these tools.
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.