When it comes to applying for jobs, you have to assume the following.

It’s a generalisation and may not always be true, but in most cases it will be.

Every time you apply for a role and your resume sits in front of a hiring manager, if your application is being seriously considered, she will turn to her computer and google your name.

What will she find?

Will it be a blog that catalogues your expertise in your chosen field of endeavour?

Will it be the list of industry related journals that you’ve been published in?

Will it be your LinkedIn profile? Will it match your resume? Does it have great references attached from credible sources?

Will it be an album of embarrassing, drunken photos?

Let me assure you that whatever they find will influence the outcome of your application.

It can be a positive or negative influence.

The positive part takes time and effort to build.

The negative takes a moment.

What will she find?

You get to choose.

By the way, if your name is John Smith and you think that this doesn’t apply to you, think again.

Any smart recruiter will use your name and work history to find out more about you, and through LinkedIn and other sources, you have the chance to make a positive impression.