Expert Tips For Parents To Help Their Children Declutter Their Digital Brand
North American Precis Syndicate
To put their best self forward to prospective educators and employers, young people should review and repair their online presence. (NAPS)
(NAPSI)—Today, what people see about us online is as much of who we
are as what people see in person. The prevalence of social media and our need
to record nearly every aspect of our lives place an importance on maintaining
a positive and professional online identity and brand. Oftentimes, how we
appear online can impact our real lives, including getting a job, earning an
education or building relationships.
This is especially important for today’s younger generations, who
will soon apply for college or start careers. Young professionals and high
school and college students are comfortable living as much of their lives
online as they do in person. While sharing their experiences online has
become a normal aspect of life, it may have negative implications if what
they post is seen as lewd, unprofessional or juvenile.
There are countless examples of how online identities can cause someone to
be fired or expelled. Parents can lead the way in smart online practices by
helping their children declutter their online
presence. Dennis Bonilla, executive dean of University of Phoenix’s
College of Information Systems & Technology, compares digital brands to
tattoos, and warns that the content we post online can never be fully erased.
“It is vital for parents to review digital brands with their
children, especially as they prepare to enter the professional chapter of
their lives,” Bonilla said. “It may not seem cool to children to
censor online content, but they will appreciate their parents’ help in
the long run.”
Bonilla shared four tips for parents to help their children declutter and improve their online identity.
1. Perform an online audit. One
of the easiest first steps that parents can take is to perform an online
audit with their children to help them see what personal information about
them is available online. Young adults may not think about all the
information that is available or how it can impact their life and career.
Inappropriate comments or photos could be the deciding factor in an interview
or scholarship application. A quick search of their name, school or job can
provide a good idea of what others can find about them.
2. Clean up and learn from social
media history. Encourage your child to revisit old posts, photographs and
comments across social media sites and take time to remove anything that
might be questionable. When it comes to career-focused sites like LinkedIn, make sure their information is professional,
career relevant and up-to-date. If your children’s content is immature
or unprofessional, teach your children to learn from their post history and
avoid similar future mistakes.
3. Update—and diversify—passwords.
Cyber protection is as important as a clean identity. A hacked account or
leaked information can make a person appear unprofessional, despite the
industry. The 10 to 15 minutes it takes to review your child’s accounts
and strengthen and diversify their passwords across sites could very well
save them the hours or days it would take to deal with a stolen identity—let
alone the hundreds or thousands of dollars that could cost. Make sure your
child’s new passwords are long, complicated, and use a combination of
letters, numbers and symbols.
4. Serve as an example. As
established professionals, most parents understand the proper content to post
to social media sites. Use your accounts and online identity as an example
for your children. By posting professional content, limiting the amount of
information available online and positioning yourself as a hirable candidate,
you set a good example for your children to follow to ensure they improve and
maintain a good online identity.
On the Net:North American Precis Syndicate, Inc.(NAPSI)