In today's digital world, social media isn't just about sharing pictures of your pets with close circles of your friends or family. Thanks to smartphones, Wi-Fi and increasing levels of connectivity, everything we do is becoming increasingly "public" - whether you're aware of it or not.
For people in the medical devices industry, the line between personal and professional can be challenging to navigate on social media. While it's natural to want to use your Facebook page to vent about an exhausting day or look for new opinions on a challenging project, the things that you do online can put your career in jeopardy.
So, how do you drive successful career development
in the age of social media?
Does Social Media Help or Hurt Your Career?
Social media can be a dangerous place for any employee. Mistakes in what you say or do can harm your chances of attracting the best employers
. However, when it's used correctly, the internet can also be a great place to build your personal and professional brand and discover new opportunities.
Recruiter surveys show that 55% of employees
recognise job candidates based on their social presence. What's more, 70% of employers
use social media pages to screen people before they invite them to an interview.
Protecting your medical device career might not mean ignoring social media altogether, but instead learning how to use it correctly.
Here's how you can do just that.
1. Show the Best Version of Yourself
Many people assume that the only place their employers will see them online is on professional channels like LinkedIn. However, any profile that isn't set to ‘private’ is an insight into who you are as a person and potential employee. This means that you'll need to continually show your best features.
Look at your social profiles as an extension of your CV. How can the way you interact with friends, and the content that you post improve your reputation in the medical device sector? For instance, you might:
- Highlight your latest volunteer work and what you learned from it.
- Talk about recent classes you've been taking, or how you've updated your skills.
- Write blogs or thought-leadership pieces on your speciality (i.e., diagnostics, vascular devices or orthopaedics).
2. Avoid Negativity
Before you post anything, ask yourself whether it will harm your chances of attracting future opportunities. In other words, are your posts political? Might they be deemed offensive? Do they reveal private information about your employer or the business you work with? Accidentally talking about a new imaging device you've been working on may lead to repercussions if your boss wanted to keep that information under wraps.
Be careful posting any comments about your position or employer that might indicate a bad attitude. If you want to complain about a challenging experience at work, do it in private - not somewhere where your existing or future peers might see it.
Alternatively, turn your negative thoughts into positive feedback for your employer. If they welcome suggestions from team members, give them ideas on how they can make their company a better place to work at
3. Use Your Privacy Settings
Sometimes, it's difficult to know what's safe to post online, and what isn't. Is humbly bragging about the break-through you made in the surgical device sector a good or bad idea? Will regularly commenting on colleague profiles make you more likeable
, or just get on people's nerves?
When in doubt, use your privacy settings to ensure that you're only sharing your messages with your friends and family. Importantly, if someone is following you on social media, your privacy settings won't hide what you post from them, so you may still need to keep certain comments to private messages.
If you're worried about finding the line between your professional and personal life online, you might consider creating one profile to support your personal professional brand, and one that you use exclusively with friends and family. Just make sure you always know which is which.
4. Embrace the "Networking" in Social Networking
Finally, don't forget to make the most of the positive sides of social media. For instance, LinkedIn is an excellent place to connect with other healthcare leaders
and join groups of people devoted to the medical devices space. You can even read and share content about your speciality as long as you don't reveal any sensitive information that might conflict with industry regulations.
Use your social channels to:
- Demonstrate your knowledge of the medical devices space and expand it with new insights from industry professionals.
- Follow and connect with peers that you admire - you may find a new mentor or someone who can get your foot in the door for an impressive position.
- Drive your career forward by speaking to recruitment companies. Teams like Kinetic can help you get the most out of social media, by giving you access to a community of sector professionals.
Remember, social media is like any other tool in your career development. You just need to learn how to use it.
At Kinetic we pride ourselves on being the leading regional experts in the full range of recruitment solutions for the Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices industries.
Kinetic understands the niche requirements for all specialisms of this ever-increasing regulated industry. Wondering if your salary structure is correct in today’s market? Then download The Kinetic Salary and Employment Survey here.
To find out more about how we can support you in your recruitment campaign or help you land your next career progression contact us here.