Could your profile picture be hurting your career?
Over the past decade, social media has become integral to both personal and professional life. Socialization seemingly occurs more online than in-person and gone are the days that we walk into offices in search of jobs.
So what does this mean?
This means all of your social media accounts and even your email favicon have become extensions of you. They represent your personality, behaviors, preferences, and showcase your everyday life. Not only is this a dream come true for advertisers, but it is a recruiting and hiring manager's first stop in their evaluation to hire you or not.
What is the first thing a potential employer, customer, or business partner see when they look you up?
A small thumbnail of your face.
This could be that snapshot your friend took at karaoke night, with less-than-professional attire and an ice cold beer in hand. It could be the photo you had your coworker take against the office wall in order to look more professional. It may even be a selfie you took because the window light made your skin glow. Whatever DIY representation you choose to use, it could be hurting your career.
Why This Matters
- Research shows that when looking at photos of people, we form lasting first-impressions within one-tenth of a second. Think of the first impression your karaoke snapshot makes (by the way, research also shows 47% of employers are "turned-off" by alcohol consumption in photos).
- According to CareerBuilder, 70% of hiring managers and recruiters are using social media accounts to screen job applicants. Using this knowledge, figure out how you want to appear to current/potential employers or customers.
- Employers are beginning to monitor employee's social media accounts. You become a representation of your employer, even if it's a personal account.
What Can You Do?
Invest in yourself and your career with a headshot done by a professional photographer. A professional headshot photographer knows how to pose you and bring out your best in a headshot. This increases your likelihood of landing that interview, gives a positive first impression, and shows employers/customers that you value yourself and your career.