The job-seeker's guide to social media // Advice

You're probably already using these three platforms — and that's a good thing. But are you using them correctly?

By Diane Peters

On Wednesday September 3rd, 2014



“It’s the engine of the social internet,” says Lisa Stam, partner and founder of Toronto employment law firm Koldorf Stam LLP. On Twitter, news articles, cat videos and racy comments can go viral in a snap.

thumbs-upUse a casual but professional photo of yourself. Post a mix of ideas, stories, images and videos about your personal and professional interests.

thumbs-down“If you’re tweeting about every single subject under the sun 20 times a day, I don’t know who you are,” says Stam. Show some personality. Join conversations on topics you’re passionate about. But be careful with your words: everyone is watching. 



Your mother is on here! And so is your boss. The lines between private and public have blurred, so tread carefully. Adjust your privacy settings so that only people you’ve friended can see your activity. 

thumbs-upConsider making two profiles, suggests employment lawyer Sean Bawden. One for family and friends and the other for classmates and colleagues (your classmates will soon be your colleagues). 

thumbs-downDrunken party pics — not a great idea. Since you can’t control what your friends post and others might see, avoid having those pictures taken in the first place. 



Social media’s business networking site is great for making connections, getting your CV out there and browsing job postings. Don’t be surprised to see that your future employer viewed your profile before your interview. 

thumbs-upJoin groups in your practice area of interest and get in on the conversation. Stam suggests creating a group of your graduating class — a great source for future business. 

thumbs-downUpdating your profile just once and posting no picture (or an unprofessional one) will hurt more than it will help. Keep your profile up to date, linking it to any published papers or law-related club memberships. 

Read more about how to master the professional side of social media.

This story appears in our 2014 national Student Issue