For our most recent assignment in my strategic social media class we were presented with the task of writing a blog post on any article we have read in the class. I have chosen to write my blog post about “Why Profile Photos Matter-Is Yours Appropriate?” Sree Sreenicasan wrote this article. He suggested that we live in an age where the Internet is easily accessible (clearly). Sree wrote that employers would look up your profile picture online in order to see if you looked the same as when you interviewed. He also said many employers won’t hire you if you look different than your profile picture suggests. What do you do when someone mentions a name to you and you can’t recall the persons face? Why pull out your trusty iPhone (or smartphone…I’m biased) and browse Facebook of course. How many times have you done this? What do you think the first thing a potential employer does after reading your resume? If you guessed “Google me” you are probably correct. I know that if I were hiring someone, Google, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn would be the first place I looked. Therefore a nice profile picture would be key. Even though I have all of my profiles on private, meaning you have to ask my permission to see what I post, you are still able to see my profile picture. If I have a profile that I am holding alcohol or one that cropped awkwardly, what kind of message does that send to a potential employer? Or better yet, how would it look if you are applying to a company and you look up the owner on Facebook and his or her profile picture is one with them making a silly face or a bunch of people in the picture. What kind of message would that send to you? Would you want to work for a company that does not care about their image?
Sree gave his personal formula for a good profile photo:
Clear, recent close-up shot of your face
No shots of you with a celebrity, a national monument, pet or child
No wide-shot of you at a landmark
No hats, wigs or sunglasses
No tinting your photo (or putting a digital ribbon on it) in support of the cause du jour
Before I read this article, I understood the importance of having a good profile picture. I just thought it needed to be clean and just of me. So I would awkwardly cut people out even though you could tell someone else was supposed to be in the picture. For my sorority, we have to take composite pictures. These are basically headshots. I made the decision to change my profile pictures on the media that I try to be more professional on to this image. You can see the difference in my profile pictures below.
I believe this article was one of the most important that we have been assigned in this class. This is senior level class and most of us are applying for internships and summer jobs. It is important to present our best self at all times in order to be our best self.