There’s no doubt that politics has become more divisive over the past decade, with people taking more definitive sides in political debates, and often attacking or dismissing those who don’t agree.
The cause of this increased division is unclear, but there’s strong evidence to suggest that social media is the key culprit. With social algorithms boosting the reach of content that sparks emotional response, which then leads to more comments, engagement, sharing, etc., that’s incentivized publications to take more partisan angles in their reporting, helping to provoke a reaction, and drive more traffic to their sites.
The social platforms themselves have argued against this, but again, the correlating evidence is fairly clear.
But another consideration within this shift has been the increasingly public nature of people’s personal political stances, via their posts and actions on social platforms. In the past, you may not have known about your uncle Jim’s opinion on climate science, but now, you likely know about a lot more everybody’s beliefs and approaches, which may also be helping to fuel that division.
And that’s also lead to another impact, with hiring managers now factoring such into their decision-making when assessing candidates.
There are ethical questions around such, but the fact is that if you put an opinion out there, people are going to read it. And hiring managers, who are assessing not only skills but team fit as well, are increasingly checking up on applicants via their posts and updates in social media apps.
To provide some perspective on this, the team from Sky Nova recently surveyed over 1,000 employees, and over 200 hiring managers, to see how they’re using social media insights to get an understanding of candidate political stances, and how that then impacts their decision-making.
You can read Sky Nova’s full report here, or check out the results in the infographic below.