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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR STUDENT-ATHLETES ARE TWEETING? THEIR FUTURE EMPLOYERS MAY!

The following information is equally important to coaches and athletes.  The revolution of social media has so much potential for helping us to grow personally and professionally but it also has pitfalls.  The same must be noted for student-athletes.  One of the areas of our coaching umbrella is to help our student-athletes understand this and point them in the right direction.

Yesterday our staff met on social media and how it relates to our team.  We wanted to take some time to educate our team fully on the positives and negatives that come from Tweeting and Facebooking. We will actually have a team meeting today just for that subject.

A recent article on the Internet pointed to the fact that 91% of employers are using Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn as methods of screening possibly employees -- 91%.  Even more staggering is that fact that of those businesses polled, 69% say they have rejected an applicant based on the content of their social media pages.

Here are more stats:

47% of employees check social media sites immediately after receiving a job application

Facebook is checked by 76% or employers and Twitter by 53%

The positive: 68% of employees have hired a candidate because of something they saw on a social network site.

We have blogged before about this but what we teach our student-athletes off the court is far more important than what we teach them on the court.  If we are just worried about jump shots and ball handling we are cheating them in the worse possible way.  Social media has exploded with this generation.  Take the time to monitor your players.  Don't be nosey but find the time to help them to best represent them as young people as well as brand your program.

I would also add that this effect coaches, especially young ones who don't realize the impact of a quick yet improper tweet.  How do you want to present yourself to your next head coach if you are working your way up the professional ladder.  If you want that next head coaching opportunity, how will you be viewed by the Athletic Director that will make the call.

As a coach, you should have a social media strategy.  Certainly you want to show your personal side while branding your program but I would always caution about a quick post or tweet.  As a coach, you are not just representing yourself with a tweet but your program -- whether you like it or not or agree with it or not.  Take some time and give thought to the picture you want to paint.  The adage is as old as time but you never get a second chance to make a good first impression.  If a person is reading your tweet or post for the first time, what are they going to think?