Yesterday, I posted about the value of social networking for the job seeker. Then, as I usually do, I went through my blogroll to see what’s out there in the career space. Coincidentally, Marci Alboher’s blog for the New York Times, Shifting Careers, reminded readers of another great benefit of getting involved with social media such as blogging, Twitter, Facebook, linkedin, etc. It can help keep you looking young in a job market with a tendency to discriminate against older workers.
If you haven’t looked for a job in a while and/or aren’t tuned in to managing your “digital footprint” – what comes up when someone “Googles” your name – it’s time for a quick lesson in social media. The long and the short of it is this: an online presence is key to how people will perceive you. Especially if you are in a “young” industry that discriminates against workers over 40, appearing connected to new ways of presenting yourself (your brand, as it were), may help you open doors that seemed closed.
Take a look at Marci’s blog…It tells the story of a 49-year old entertainment reporter who remade her image by freshening up her appearance and wardrobe and creating a hip online presence that made her seem younger than would belie her 20 years of industry experience. She hired people to help her, which is a great idea, but Marci points out that asking fashion conscious friends and teenagers (your children or others’) for advice and information about trends and technology is another option.
The key factor is, no matter how much experience you have, it is important to keep up with what is going on in today’s job market. Video resumes, Wikis, video conferencing, Second Life, podcasts…Job seekers should be aware of these technologies and willing to use them! Be resourceful and aware – you may be surprised to learn that Web 2.0tools can be a lot of fun and helpful beyond networking and job seeking. (Be sure to let me know when you start using a Wiki to plan your next potluck!)
Facing discrimination in your job hunt? We can write your resume to make you look younger. Need help navigating social media and online networking? Keppie Careers is here for you!
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photo by Sarah Camp