twitter.jpgI’m all for using cyber social media to have fun and connect with friends, but Twitter is not Facebook.

The whole point of Twitter is you connect to the world at large and not just people you knew in college. Because of Twitter’s global paradigm, Twitter rants and Twitter stupidity can come back to haunt your career or your job search. Everyone from entertainers to average working stiffs have to watch what they say.

Did you know that the Library of Congress is actually archiving Twitter tweets? This is serious stuff folks so you need to be serious all the time, not just some of the time. Hiring managers don’t distinguish between your professional tweets and your not so professional tweets.

That’s why I advised a Twitter follower this morning not to tweet what you don’t want to be seen. She asked if she should only post her professional tweets on her LinkedIn page. For those of you who don’t know, you can automatically or manually have your Twitter tweets displayed on your LinkedIn page.

The tweeter asked: what kind of things are appropriate to post as LinkedIn updates? Everything that you tweet? Or only serious, business updates?

OK, here’s how this shakes down. LinkedIn is typically the first place hiring managers go when they’re considering a job applicant. That means you want to make your LinkedIn page as professional as possible, and you also want to show you’re tech savvy. So, it’s a great thing if you’re on Twitter and you have those tweets posted on LinkedIn.

But, just because you don’t post the tweets on LinkedIn doesn’t mean headhunters and people in your professional network won’t see them. Many managers tell me they often Google job candidates to see what’s out in cyber space about them, and guess what will probably come up pretty far up in the search, especially if you’re name isn’t John Smith? Your Tweeter tweets.

I often suggest you put your Twitter handle on your resume or emails to hiring managers to show how hip you are and that’s an invitation for people to check them out, which is a good thing, if they’re good tweets. I’ve also been told by many hiring managers that they tend to see Facebook as an applicant’s personal account and as a result don’t want to look at what you’re doing on there.

So, don’t tweet what you don’t want people to see. You can be funny, witty or cutting edge but just take a moment before you hit that “tweet” button. It’s easy to tweet what comes off the top of your head and that can be dicey. That’s why I choose to rhyme all my tweets. As a result, it gives me time to figure out if it’s something I should tweet at all. Give yourself a five-second rule to ponder your tweet.

I know you guys don’t think before you tweet. How do I know this? All you have to do is spend two minutes on Twitter this morning and before you know it you’ll come across a tweet like this:

My boss don’t know but I’m calling in Thursday and hitting it to Atlanta.

Yeah, his boss “don’t know” now but might know soon.

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