A couple of weeks ago, I reblogged an article by John Lucas Hargis about agents and how they stalk us on the internet. Guess who else stalks us? Potential employers. I’ve been out of the work force for a few months, but I’m trying to find a new job so I can afford book covers and shiny things and sparkly shoes for my daughter. And food and stuff too.
Anyway, when looking for jobs today, I came across a posting where the employer asked applicants to forward a resume along with links to Facebook and Twitter. Now, it’s not exactly a secret that employers do some digging into a potential (or existing) employee’s background. I don’t have a problem with this. Like I tell my kids, if it’s on the internet, it’s on public display. Whether or not an employer can fire an existing employee for internet shenanigans is a legal issue I’m not qualified to comment on, but I can understand why a company would do a bit of cyber-stalking prior to interviewing a candidate for employment. After all, the wise job seeker researches the company they’re applying for before interviewing, right? So it stands to reason an employer would want to do the same.
Before I began writing, I was practically un-google-able. I didn’t have a Facebook or a Twitter. Flash forward three years and I’m everywhere. Tumblr, WordPress, Blogger, Google +, Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin… everywhere. I have to wonder what potential employers will think of me if they Google my name and see a million-jillion pages of stuff. Every interview I’ve posted on Authors to Watch, every blog post, every Tweet, every Facebook status update–it’s all out there on display. I’m okay with that. I don’t have anything to be embarrassed about.
But, what will people think? Will potential employers be impressed I’ve kept myself busy during the eight month gap on my resume? Or, will they be afraid to hire me? Maybe they’ll worry that my writerly pursuits will interfere with my ability to give one-hundred percent on the job. Or, maybe they’ll worry I’ll write a book about them if things go bad. There’s no point worrying about it. And, really, I’m not worried. It is what it is.
I’m sure there’s a job out there for me. Somewhere, there’s a boss who is looking for an employee who has a good working knowledge of social media. A boss who is willing to overlook the big old gap in my resume where I cast aside accounting and played with words instead. Somewhere, there’s a boss who will stalk my Facebook page and be impressed by the sheer number of Grumpy Cat pictures I’ve posted. Everyone likes Grumpy Cat, right?