Remember in middle school when you learned about analogies? I’ve got one for you:
Match.com is to dating what LinkedIn is to employment.
And don’t underestimate its power. A good LinkedIn profile can help you make a good first impression before you even get the interview. How? Because a recruiter makes their opinion of you within the first 20 seconds of reading your profile.
Whether you believe it or not, a lot of large enterprises like my own are using LinkedIn to actively promote and fill job openings. So for the unemployed or unhappily employed it may be your ticket out.
It also gives you an opportunity to learn and network. There are a number of groups on targeted topics with active members who post new information, hold relevant discussions, and quite frankly get to know each other. If you’re just starting out, or still want to see what else you can do to build, here are a few tips on how to create a great LinkedIn profile:
- Complete to 100%. as many of you already on LinkedIn know, the platform encourages you to have a full profile. It gamifies the steps, making it almost fun for you to optimize your profile for search. Don’t skimp on the details; include both your current and past work experiences. Including the details changes if you show up in searches. For example, say someone was looking for a Penn State Marketing Major who worked with non-profits. If you didn’t include all those details, you might have missed an opportunity.
- Make some friends and be polite. Just because it’s online doesn’t mean the golden rules of face-to-face networking disappear. Take the time to write personal invites and as a best practice, thank everyone you connect with.
- Give one to get one, a recommendation that is. Testimonials are more often than now what sells a product, so make sure to have some all about you and your work. But make sure to give one out too. It’s common courtesy and just good karma. Another way to give one to get one is with endorsements. It’s simple, click “endorse” for some friends listed skills and you’d be surprised who returns the favor.
- Get a hobby. Remember those groups I mentioned earlier? Join some, comment on the discussions, share content you find interesting. Your enthusiasm for a subject may lead to the career change you’ve been waiting for. (Here are the top LinkedIn Groups for: Enterprise Mobility Human Resources Sales & Marketing Finance)
- Avoid being shameless. Use the groups for thought leadership content only. Don’t overly promote yourself or your product if you’re trying to make quota. People take these groups as a place to discuss passions and inform the uninformed, not to be sold too.
I hope these 5 tips on how to create a great LinkedIn profile. Let me know if they work, or if you have any other suggestions.
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