Data shows that having an online profile can help you get into college and get a job. “Informal recruitment" - where someone you have contacted looks online for information about your interests and abilities - is widespread in the corporate world and a growing trend in education.
So you want your online profile to be the best it can be. To do so, show what you know and love to do. But also avoid making the following mistakes . . . .
1. Don't use a kooky image for your avatar
Always upload a good photo of yourself for your avatar.
NOT an image of an animal or flower or Jabba the Hut. This may work on social media but remember, this is your learning network. Don't chicken out and leave your avatar blank. A recruiter's eye will just slide on by . . . .
Remember: schools, coaches, companies, family and others are curious about you. You avatar photo is who you want them to see first.
2. Don't use a confusing photo for your avatar
Remember your audience! Again, coaches, companies, family and others will be looking at this. People want to see you. Not you and your pet. Not you and your baby brother. You!
Your photo should be a standard and non-filtered photo of you. Misrepresenting yourself can be a real blunder for people. It can convey the opposite of what you probably want your audience to think.
A clear photo with a warm smile and open eyes goes a long way.
3. Don't use an inappropriate photo for your banner.
Your banner photo is a wonderful way to show some personality and passion, but not the place for a meme. Put your school admission officer hat on - show them something cool/interesting/different that you DO: play in a band, volunteer at church, fly drones!
4. Don't rely on the standard "connection request" - Huh? Who is this?
Not everyone knows about trovvit (yet!). We give you a default connection request to get you started BUT it's generic enough that your connection might think it is spam or a phishing email. The default message states:
When you are inviting your family, mentors, coaches and teachers to connect be sure that they know it is you. Personalize the message a bit by using a first name and tell them why you want to connect with them.
Remember this is your learning network. The goal is not to connect to the world but to the people that you have learned from or with.
People are using trovvit to build their learning network and to leverage the knowledge and connections that those people have. trovvit can help getting into the right school, finding the right internship, being hired for the right job. It can help people find you and see what you want them to see (not that screenshot of your Snapchat post that went viral).
5. Neglecting the Privacy Settings
Some people don't realize that trovvit has privacy settings. Being designed for students of all ages these are important to understand.
Your trove is private. Only YOU have access to this. Even if you connect to your school, camp or sports team, the records you create are private. You can share them in your feed with all or targeted connections and you can select records to post in your portfolio.
Your profile can be made public to the internet (anyone can see it) or you can keep it private which means only your connections can see it.
Your portfolio can be made public to the internet (anyone can see it) or you can keep it private which means only YOU can see it.
The privacy settings are easy to find, just sign in and go to your profile or portfolio page. Click “edit” and scroll to the bottom of the page. Toggle the Profile visibility to “private” or “all”. On the Profile page toggle the Portfolio visibility to “private” or “all”.
6. Don't skip the “About Me”
A traditional resume often has a short narrative statement at the top. This is a perfect opportunity to tell a story about you in a few sentences. If you leave it blank, you miss a fun opportunity to tell people a little about yourself.
Think of the About Me as a way of selling yourself—it's an opportunity to express your voice and personality. Imagine yourself as a coach or counselor, seeing the About Me for the first time - write it in the first person to give it energy and personality.
7. Don't leave off schools or clubs
We all change schools, but your latest school or camp isn’t the only important one. All those different robotics camps shows passion and commitment. Again, ask yourself, "Who is looking at my profile?" It may be someone who went to your old school or a camp you went to years ago. Put your pre-school on trovvit? Sure! Many students want to stay connected with their schools to be counted as an alumni, give back to the school as a mentor or simply list with pride where they went.
8. Don't forget to keep your profile up to date
You don't have to update your trovvit profile on a daily basis (which is good!). But DO check it occasionally to make sure your profile shows what you can do today. trovvit will help by ‘auto-magically’ updating your profile when you connect to a new school, camp or club, however it is a good idea to get in the practice of reviewing your profile at the end of each semester.
Going to a new camp, club, or school? Updating your trovvit profile! Sending in an application to a job or a school? Update your profile!
You are doing and learning amazing things. trovvit can help you share it with the people who are looking for learners like you. Avoid the above common mistakes, so you can look your best.