LinkedIn can be a great tool for job seekers. Articles and job-seeking strategies that leverage LinkedIn are constantly popping up. But what about those who are generally happy with their job? What’s in it for them?
I’ve been on LinkedIn for a few years, yet I’ve never used it to find a job. I have a decent network of people from and have fully filled out my profile. So now what? What’s in it for me?
The other day, I made an update to my status letting everyone know what I’m working on (a campaign about the federal stimulus funding). Out of the blue, I received a message from a previous manager, along with a recommendation. How cool is that? It got me to thinking about what LinkedIn is all about.
It’s about building your personal brand: This is all about you, but professionally. Sure you may be on Twitter or Facebook, but this page is all about your professional life. It’s you resume that goes along with the personality and insights you provide through all of your other mediums.
It’s about staying networked with people you’ve come in contact with: I just got back from a conference with a pile of business cards. I debated what to do with them – should I write descriptive notes on the back of the cards with what they do, what they look like, what we talked about? Seemed like a lot of work – then I got the bright idea of adding them on LinkedIn! Problem solved. All but one of the contacts were on LinkedIn.
It’s about joining groups: Keep the conversation going. You can get a lot of information from being a part of the LinkedIn groups, and provide a lot of information too! By responding to requests for advice and weighing in on subjects, you’re building your network even further. Even if you aren’t directly connected, you are getting in front of people with the same interests as you. Plus, when you need advice you’ll have a group of people who will return the favor.
It gives you an excuse to ASK for recommendations: Who thought asking for recommendations was ever going to be easy? And once you received one, be it for admission to college or for a new job, you never got use out of it again. With the LinkedIn recommendations, they’re there for the long haul. Next time someone thanks you and says they owe you one, simply ask for a LinkedIn recommendation to go with that beer!
It gives you a chance to give kudos to those that deserve it: If you work with someone great, tell everyone about it. Wouldn’t you want them to do it for you?
It gives you a network, ‘just in case’: You never know when you will need to tap into your networking resources on LinkedIn. With the economy down and the unemployment rate up, LinkedIn and other social media networking strategies are critical.