Google Thyself Again

Google Thyself Again

It might be time to Google yourself again. Things change. You’ve done a lot on the web. It’s time to see what Google knows and what others are going to see (especially if you’re searching for a new job, as I am) when they punch up your name. Here’s my latest page 1 results. I’m using Google Chrome’s Incognito feature so no history or localization information was used in these results.

A few things to remember about your online reputation and Googling yourself.

  • You need to get a handle on your search results page long before there’s an issue, if there ever is an issue.
  • You want to make sure you’re showing up on Google in the appropriate places
  • You want to look for bad content, odd content, or pirated content (when they use your writing but don’t attribute it or pay you for its use)
  • If you control the pages that show up in the first few search engine results pages, you’re golden. If you don’t show up at all, it’s time to get started on your online portfolio.

Today the resume is important. LinkedIn is more important. And before hiring you for a top position, Google may be the most important at all. Are you posting political rants? Is your content relevant? Do you have any authority on the subject you are hoping to get a leadership position in?

But can a large social media footprint also work against you in the hiring game? Does my large Twitter following make me a threat? Or the fact that I keep my Facebook page private? What about the fact that I write, have written, for the Huffington Post? (I was fired on the second day from a job, when they Googled me and found my Huff Po author’s page.) What is your online search results page saying about you and your online reputation?

I like what I see when I Google myself. I found some sites that have syndicated my content from The Good Men Project. I find that I’m burying the more famous McElhenney, Rob. (He doesn’t show up until page 3. And if you want to know about me from Google, 99% of the content is stuff that I’ve written myself. I want you to find me, but I want you to find what I want you to find. No, I don’t have any lingering secrets on the dark internet, but I am controlling the conversation about me online.

What can your Google search tell you about your online content? Will you find some random stuff from a long time ago, stuff you might not be so proud of? It’s time to start Googling today, so you can be proactive in building your online reputation. LinkedIn and your resume only tell part of the story, Google tells the rest.

John McElhenney
@jmacofearth (also seen on Google+: jmacofearth)

A few of the networks you will find me on:

  • linkedin – the professional networking and contacts social site
  • twitter – the firehose of sharing (mostly social media, funny, and odd political)
  • facebook – recently launched facebook page
  • google+ – gathering all that’s googled in one place
  • pinterest – what started as fashion sharing is rapidly becoming the visual delicious
  • my Amazon Author’s Page: John Oakley McElhenney
  • my page < way more connections then you’ll ever need about me

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