If you still don't have a LinkedIn account and you have any dreams of building a career, what are you waiting for?! This is the 21st Century and if you want to have any chance of succeeding, you need to be not only reachable, but searchable.
I started using LinkedIn back in 2011 right before graduating college and it has been the best place to connect with colleagues and find job opportunities both locally and internationally. So I thought this would be a great chance to give you what I've learned during these almost 7 years using this social network for professionals:
1. Add co-workers, college friends and professors
Add anyone who has been in your career path. From college friends and professors to co-workers, all these people should be part of your LinkedIn network. They will eventually help you find jobs and expand your network.
No need to add any friends from other fields, that's what Facebook is for. Also, don't add colleagues you don't know, unless you have made any approaches through email or in person. Trust me, it's kind of creepy.
2. Use bullet points to describe your job positions
Remember, this is a digital resumé, and just in case you haven't noticed, people have a very short attention span on the Internet. Make your tasks as easy to read as possible. Bonus points if you start each task with an action verb!
3. Make your headline fun and witty
You know that place at the top of your page just bellow your name? That's called a Headline on LinkedIn. Change your default headline to something fun and witty so it catches people's eye. For example, if you are a Content Manager at XYZ Agency, change your headline to "Content Generator and Social Media Superstar" or something among that line. You get the idea!
Also, how much fun you have with your headline will also depend on how your industry works. The communications field is usually a lot more laid back than corporate finances to give you an example. Keep that in mind.
4. Don't forget your summary
This is where people will get to know you a little better and decide if they have some sort of interest in your resumé. Make a brief of your career, your interests and what you like to do in your free time. Make sure you include these, and you're good to go:
- Who you are?
- What you do?
- How you do it?
- What you like to do in your free time?
- Random fun fact about you - Again, how much fun you have with this fact will depend on your industry.
5. If you have a small business, blog or work as a freelancer, add it to your Experience Section
It doesn't matter if it has to do with the job you're looking for. Knowing you can handle more than one job is a responsibility trait and knowing you have an entrepreneurial spirit is always a plus. Don't be afraid to have a title like "CEO", " Editor-In-Chief" or "Founder". Embrace it!
6. Create a LinkedIn Page for your business or blog.
It's free! That way people can follow your business for updates and job positions. Plus, potential employers and/or clients can learn whatever your business is about without having to leave LinkedIn.
7. Add your LinkedIn Profile to your resumé
Here's where you should add your LinkedIn Profile:
- Printed Resume
- Online Resume
- Portfolio Website
Hint: Buy your name's domain and link it to your LinkedIn profile if you want to look extra fancy.
8. Ask for recommendations
Leaving a job on good terms? Ask your manager to give you a recommendation. Worked freelance with someone and they loved your work? Ask them to give you a recommendation.
*Etiquette Rule: Don't forget to offer a recommendation back.
9. Add online courses and certifications
Head over to the Accomplishments section on your profile and add all the online courses and certifications you have taken during the years. If you have none, this is your time to start taking them. Here are some websites that might help you:
- Google Analytics Academy (free!)
- Code Academy (free!)
10. Make Status Updates
If there is one place in this world where it is socially acceptable to brag, is LinkedIn. Let people know all of your career updates and interesting business links relevant to your field.
Liked these tips? I have many more that I have learned through the years. Let me know if you're interested so I can put it in schedule. ;)
Oh, and don't forget to follow ambinity on Linkedin here.
Until next time,