Despite all the hype & greatly altering the recruitment business, Linkedin will not land you that dream job. However it is a very useful tool to put your best foot forward , to network , to research & build your brand. We would go as far as to say that it would be unusual for a job seeker not to have a linkedin profile.
Should I Bother With LinkedIn?
Good afternoon. Justin O’Keefe from Talent Force Improvements to continue to help parents get back into the work force or parents that are currently out of work. So today we’re going to ask the question about LinkedIn. Is it worth the effort? Is it worth your time? Is it worth building a profile from scratch? Is it worth updating it?
So what is LinkedIn? LinkedIn is a company. It is owned by MicroSoft who bought it last year for over $20 billion dollars and really what it is is it’s a networking platform for professionals where you tell your story, you join groups, etc. etc.
So first question I know you have is “is it worth your while if I’m looking to get back to work having a LinkedIn profile”. And the answer is a very, very clear absolutely. I would actually answer the other question is it would be unusual these days for a professional in the work force not to have a LinkedIn profile. It’s simply expected. It would be very, very unusual.
On the other hand, if I were a parent currently working perhaps looking to find another role I’d be a little bit more cautious in modifying or adding a LinkedIn profile. I would often see people who are adding LinkedIn profiles for the first time or modifying. It typically means to be a bit of a signal that perhaps someone is looking to move jobs. It’s like if you see your neighbor getting their driveway redone or getting major gardening work, they’re looking to sell the house. So it’s just one of these kind of things that the people do notice. It’s not a red flag. It’s more of an amber flag.
So there are many, many guides and lists of tips out there for linkedin . At the end of the video I will put up a couple of those. Everyone from Forbes to Marie Claire have suggestions on what to do.
So I’m going to talk more about the approach you should take and things you should consider when you’re doing it. The key words and exactly the sections you need to fill out. I will leave that to the specialists because that’s what they do.
So the first thing to think about is, we did a video a week or so ago about the approach to technology and each one on LinkedIn has an ongoing tool and I’m going picture that you keep on painting, you keep on modifying. There is no I will put all my work into it this weekend and I’ll get my LinkedIn profile done, finished. So it’s very much about continuously tweaking. Essentially what your LinkedIn page is, it’s your own personal website. It allows you to tell your story. It is not a CV. It’s very much about taking text, writing it properly, making sure there’s no typos, that it’s well written, perhaps writing in a word or cutting and pasting it in, but it’s more of a digital conversation than a CV. A CV tends to be more like a flier. The purpose of the CV is to get you the interview. The purpose of the LinkedIn profile is to tell your story and to bring to life your depth of experience and interests.
So a couple key things we suggest doing: LinkedIn tends to work using your network, using your connections. We’ll talk about those briefly and it’s also heavily dependent on key words. So whatever the key words you need to emphasize, data analytics, graphic design, software package, whatever those words are, you need to make sure they’re planted throughout the document.
Next thing is a photo, extremely important. This is the photo people expect, people expect a photo. Likewise when they meet you, they expect the photo to be the same person as the meeting. So photo is extremely important. Professional, not a casual photo. What’s the image that you’re looking to portray?
Next thing is groups. So with groups you can join local business groups, national interest groups, international interest groups, companies, universities. So these are areas of like minded people and you need to have a think about when somebody sees your profile, they see the groups that you’re also involved in. So what is the direction I am trying to go, what is the story I’m trying to tell?
When you start thinking about your experience, Li8nkedIn tends to benefit those who are focused. So perhaps think about the top five strengths that you’re looking to emphasize, the things that you’re done, and include the key words. Do fill out the education section too. It’s extremely good. Education and other education. It’s very self explanatory. There’s loads of really good guides on this, but really emphasize your experience, your education. Get those words in there. Not the generous buzz words. You need to capture what you’ve done.
Next is recommendations. It sounds a little bit corny, but if you can get recommendations from people from your network, from work that you’ve done and that is valuable. I would be suggesting, probably should do this myself, in the region of 5-10 recommendations. Okay, not something many of us are comfortable with.
Next thing is to build your network. I think you should be looking at targeting 100-200-300 people in your network. This is like Facebook. They’re not necessarily your friends, but it’s a professional network of people that perhaps be open to talking to you.
You also put in your contact details, your phone, e-mail address and again make sure your e-mail address is something that reflects well on yo9u. So the bottom line is this isn’t Facebook. It’s a professional forum. There’s an opportunity to join groups, joining company web pages. It’s a really, really good research tool. LinkedIn is somewhere where you should absolutely be. You should have a footprint and having something simple that represents you well is far better than having nothing and something which you will try, you will do. You put your best foot forward. You come back in a month or two and go “you know what? I can tell a better story than that. That’s not the image I’m trying to create”. So LinkedIn, thumbs up, a 9 out of 10 as they say in Spinal Tap. Something that we would highly recommend.
Hope this has been a benefit. Any LinkedIn questions, let me know and I will post at the end of this video a couple of links to web pages that have specific advice on LinkedIn. Thank you. Take care. I hope to talk to you soon. Bye bye.