It's Not Just What You Know, It's Who You Know
by Guest Blogger Kaitlyn Northrop
Of course it's a popularity contest! HR pros are looking at your social media branding to see how connected you are. Linkedin allows you to show off and expand who you know. Name drop away during your interview, today’s social media savvy HR pros will always look at your Linkedin profile to see what kind of networking skills you really have. In order to utilize the full potential of your connections ask yourself these four questions and see if you are taking full advantage of LinkedIn connections capabilities.
Does your LinkedIn network include everyone you know? Every connection has the potential to help you find a job. Linkedin’s “people you may know” page displays colleagues, classmates and friends and is a good place to start. Make sure you have reached out to all the employees at your current and past companies. Looking at your second connections can also be beneficial, search their page for common interests, experiences and shared connections before reaching out. The Linkedn community is still growing, so it’s a good idea to go through these places regularly to increase your connection base.
Are you networking through groups? Joining groups is a great place to find people with similar interests. You can find a groups for just about anything. Join groups you are interested in and seek out connections who could help launch your career in this area. Be active in the groups you are a member of, post comments and start discussions in order to get your profile noticed. Connect with other active members and start conversations based on your similar business interests.
Have you listed all of your work experience? Most people only list their recent jobs which limits visibility. The more companies you are linked to the more exposure your profile has and the more connections you can find. List every job and company you have worked for and don’t forget about internships and part time jobs you’ve had in the past. Linkedin considers your profile “complete” when you have a current position and two past positions listed and a complete profile greatly improves the odds of your profile being seen.
Did you ask for recommendations? Okay, so you’ve increased your connections, now get them to write something nice about you. Most of your connections will be more than happy to recommend you, but very few of them will do it on their own, so don’t be afraid to ask. Linkedin makes asking for these recommendations easy. On your Linkedin profile tab there is a subsection called “recommendations.” From here you are asked to choose a job from your profile and who you would like to recommend you. Ask the appropriate people such as those you have done business with or colleagues. Peers can highlight your team work skills while managers can praise your abilities and value to the company. Make sure your recommendations are relevant and diverse to show off all of your skill areas.