Job seekers have been warned about the hazards of posting unflattering information and photos on social networking sites. But some job seekers not only persist in letting it all hang out, they insist that their social habits and behaviors have no bearing on their employability or future job performance.
Well, it turns out that your social habits may very well predict your future career success, according to a recent study by Northern Illinois University, the University of Evansville and Auburn University. One professor and two students examined the Facebook profiles of college students with jobs. They looked at photos, wall posts, comments, education and hobbies before answering a series of personality-related questions like: “Is this person dependable?” and “How emotionally stable is this person?”
Six months later, the researchers compared their ratings to performance evaluations from the students’ supervisors. Low and behold, they found a strong correlation between job performance and the Facebook scores for traits such as conscientiousness, agreeability and intellectual curiosity.
Northern Illinois University Professor of Management Don Kluemper said students who traveled, had more friends, hobbies and interests scored well, adding that photos of those students partying didn’t necessarily reflect poorly on them, as it showed that they were extroverted and friendly.
But employers may not agree with Kluemper’s conclusions. In fact, a recent study showed that seven out of 10 employers report rejecting candidates based on their social media presence—and roughly the same number report accepting candidates based on their social media presence. So rather than gambling with your livelihood, scrub your profile and change your privacy settings, if you’re a hungry job seeker who likes to party down.