There is no doubt in my mind that LinkedIn is a useful social network and essential tool for networking, company research and for finding a job.
This is the first in a series of 10 postings, each with a short tip on how to optimize your profile and how to use LinkedIn for building your network.
- Number of members: Approx. 280 million
- Number of active company profiles: 3.5 million
- Number of job advertised on LinkedIn: 300.000
- Number of schools (universities): 24.000
- 98% of recruiters and 85% of hiring managers use LinkedIn to find candidates (Viveka von Rosen, author of LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day)
I hear friends and acquaintances say: “I’m on LinkedIn but I have no idea what to use it for.” Or: My colleagues know me already, no need to connect with them on LinkedIn.”
But consider this: LinkedIn is the only social networking site that showed higher usage among the age group 50-64 year old, than those of ages 18-29. This age group have more professional experience, AND are the ones more likely to be in a position to hire, are on the site!
So a LinkedIn profile, done right, can be that online resume that will help ensure that the good work you do or aspire to do is publicly recognized and that there is a way for others to reach you with relevant opportunities.
If you’re still feel a bit skeptical, consider that most potential employers may find it strange if you’re not on there. Often, if you apply for a job, the person reading your CV will look at your LinkedIn profile.
So why should you be active on LinkedIn?
Professionals at all levels—entry-level, middle management and executives—use it for networking, keeping in touch with current and former colleagues, and engaging with their broader industry.Those more established in their careers also use it to promote their businesses.
Tip no 1. – Add a professional photo
Your photo is the first impression and it’s vital to have a proper professional photo. Remember, LinkedIn is not Facebook, so don’t add a holiday snap with your family or friends, or one taken while you are sitting in front of a computer with your head at an odd angle. The photo doesn’t have to be taken by a professional photographer, but you need to look professional in it, even if you are standing in your garden. I recommend a head shot photography, looking smiling and welcoming.
Look out for tip no. 2 tomorrow – and find out why your headline is so important.
If you want to find out more about each tip, join our LinkedIn workshops in English or Swedish. Click on the link to see a list of all our career workshops http://futurefinder.mah.se/events