If you’re one of the millions of people who recently decided to make a job change, you may be considering how to share the news. Updating your LinkedIn profile is a good place to start, but how should you share the news on other platforms?
“Celebrating something new is important,” says Lana Peters, vice president of the Americas for HiBob, an HR software provider. “You may have found another job, or you may be looking for another position, taking a sabbatical, or taking time to evaluate what you want in your life, moving forward. Whatever the case may be, celebrating that on social media is completely fine.”
First, consider the purpose of your announcement, says Christy Pruitt-Haynes, a consultant at NeuroLeadership Institute, a science-based leadership-development consulting firm.
“Are you simply informing people of a new way to get in contact with you, or a new career opportunity you’ve recently accepted?” she asks. “Are you soliciting help to find your next opportunity? Are you announcing a retirement, or that you are moving to entrepreneurship? The purpose should absolutely shape the narrative.”
Do it right by following these do’s and don’ts:
Share Your Accomplishments
This post can provide a good opportunity to thank your previous employer for the opportunity and for what you learned, suggests Peters. Even if your experience wasn’t entirely positive, there’s likely something valuable you gained.
You can use the opportunity to share some of your accomplishments, says Pruitt-Haynes. For example, “I am very proud of my time at XYZ company where I was able to grow sales by 17%, diversify our vendor list to include 50% more businesses owned by people of color, and lead a staff of 15 to our highest engagement year ever.”
“You never know who will read that, and you can’t miss an opportunity to brag on your abilities,” adds Peters.
Social media also helps you provide context around your career journey. “To me, the biggest goal that this accomplished is telling a story about that individual’s career journey and progression over time,” says Josh Dazel, vice president of human resources at Skai, an AI-driven marketing data analytics firm. “Take advantage of positive opportunities to share this narrative rather than leaving it for recruiters, hiring managers, or other connections to infer.”
Keep the Door Open
Think of a departure post as being on par with a well-crafted resignation letter, says Carlos Ledo, assistant general counsel and HR consultant for Engage PEO, an HR outsourcing-solutions provider. “The goal is to show your former employer appreciation for the opportunity you were given and leave the door open for a potential future return,” he says.
If you’re going to a new job, list your new job title and function, adds Ledo. “Not only will this provide individuals who follow you a clear picture of where you currently are in your career, but it can open the door to collaboration with others in your social media community,” he says. “It can also help you bring in new business to your current employer.”
It can help to stay connected to colleagues from past companies on social media, says Dazel. “It’s a small world when it comes to the job market within a specific industry, so you never know who you will cross paths with again, either as a colleague or a client,” he says. “Maintaining and fostering these relationships—even when you’re no longer coworkers—is a positive step and strong networking practice that takes little time and effort.”
Include a Call to Action
Talk about what’s next for you, and ask for what you need, says Pruitt-Haynes. For example, if you’re retiring, mention that you’re open to catching up over lunch or happy hour. If you are looking for a job, share that you’re excited about finding your next opportunity in the industry or fields of interest to you. And if you’re taking time off, let them know you can’t wait to emerge from your much-needed down time with a renewed sense of purpose.
If you’re looking for a new job, be clear about what you want and the skills you possess.
“It isn’t easy to truly understand what skills a person has, or the types of functions they perform within a role, solely based on a job title,” says Ledo. “Succinctly express the skills you possess, how you can apply them in your next role, and how you feel your experience can add value to a new employer.”
But Take Your Time
If you lost your job and didn’t see it coming or didn’t feel it was warranted, Peters suggest taking some time before you post the news publicly.
“The worst thing that I see happening is that folks are being let go or leaving organizations, and they’re at home and don’t have an outlet,” says Peters. “We all need to give each other a little grace and think through how we’re communicating, even more than we might have when we were all on site. It’s a different feeling of rejection and loneliness when you’re in a home office.”
And assume everything you share or post on social media is viewable by the public, says Ledo. “A false sense of security can lead to posts that can be seen as controversial or damaging to your professional reputation,” he says. “A good rule of thumb is not to post anything you wouldn’t be willing to say in front of a large audience filled with strangers and potential employers.”
Disappointment is temporary, but the internet is forever, says Pruitt-Haynes. “Represent yourself and your long-term goals well.”