One of the great powers of social media is that it is very very difficult to not be genuine. People who try to put on a face don’t last very long. The whole system is geared toward ruining liars.

And that is a good thing.

On one hand, you are more likely to trust someone when you can verify who they are from three or more social media profiles, blog entries, photos and Google results. More so when you find someone on LinkedIn.

On the other hand, people will trust you when they find your same message, value statement, and personality on three or more social media profiles, blog entries, photos and Google results — and more so when they find you on Linkedin.

But if you are hiding something you’re waiting for the third conversation to mention the “real” reason for your reaching out, you are THAT guy. And you don’t want to be THAT guy.

Anyone can smell a fish. So be upfront about your intentions with every interaction.

Here is an example. Someone posted this on their LinkedIn profile:

“I feel that I am lost in my career at this point, and would appreciate any and all guidance on what direction I should take.”

I have trouble being that forthright, as I’m sure many of you would. However, this person demonstrated integrity at such a level that recruiters have gravitated to her. Have offered to groom her for their open jobs.

Of course she probably had a very attractive résumé to go with this. Be that as it may, her honesty got her somewhere.

In contrast, I was speaking with a job seeker the other day who had been unemployed for over a year. I asked him what his strategy was. He said he reaches out to old friends and tells them he is unemployed — on the third conversation.

“So how’s that workin’ out for ya?” was my only stunned reply.

Don’t be afraid to tell your truth, whatever that may be, in a professional, non-whiny way. You may be surprised at the results.

What do you think? Could you be this direct and honest? What is one thing you can change in your profile to reflect what it is that you are actually looking for?