Topic 3 has come to a close and I have gained from this experience. Building an online “professional” profile was not something I expected could help me; I am lucky enough to have a job guaranteed for me at the end of my degree. However, Richard and I both recognised the merits of using social media professionally (see Richard’s reply and my tweet):
- To control your digital footprint 
- To better your knowledge  through real-time coverage of up and coming research
- Inspiring others, generating awareness through stories and poignant political debates – as demonstrated by Dr Helgi Johannson
Using his step-by-step instructions to create an “All-Star” profile, I have advanced from beginner to expert and now I am confident with my online “resume”.
My mentor believes that LinkedIn is not the best professional site for medics. He recommended Researchgate.net; a community for clinical/scientific research professionals to share expert and educative studies, and to develop in the academic world. This reminded me of Holly’s “industry-specific social network” theme, which resonates with the idea of finding a network niche for professional development. A very good suggestion, but I still believe thorough integration into popular social media networks can be beneficial.
Reading Richard’s blog, I realised that there are subtle yet influential things you can do for your professional profiles. A simple, consistent email signature is not only informative but looks impressive. Shaheer makes a good point about privacy, as many are wary about uploading authentic information as it could lead to identity theft, explained by Shaheer in Topic 2.
This topic has shown me how instrumental an online profile is in the professional world. Although it is time-consuming (discussed by Ellis) and could infringe on privacy, I look forward to using what I’ve learnt this fortnight to better myself online.
1. Bryan Vartabedian, 2010. Why Doctors Should Use LinkedIn. 33 Charts. Available at: http://33charts.com/2010/06/why-doctors-should-use-linkedin.html [Accessed 15th March 2016]
2. John M Mandrola, 2014. Doctors and Social Media – It’s time to embrace the change. Dr John M. Available at: http://www.drjohnm.org/2014/02/doctors-and-social-media-its-time-to-embrace-change/ [Accessed 15th March 2016]