You’ve heard it time and time again: The key to a successful job search is networking… and not just when you are searching for a new position. Networking should be a constant activity you do throughout your career, whether you are searching for a new gig or happier than ever with your job.
Recently, Citi and LinkedIn launched a new group for professional women called “Connect: Professional Women’s Network”. Geared towards professional women, the group aims to help women increase their network connections, and provide members with valuable tips and inspirational stories for professional success. Group member are actively sharing interesting articles
Check it out!
And to help you network even more, Citi and LinkedIn provided me with FIVE premium year-long LinkedIn memberships to giveaway to readers. Each premium membership is worth $600 and provides you with Inmails, the ability to contact people outside your network, add personal notes to profiles so you can remember where you met someone, priority customer service, and more.
Winners will be randomly selected on Monday, May 14th.
To enter the giveaway, first join the Professional Women’s Network LinkedIn Group. Then make a comment on this blog post with a link to your LinkedIn profile. Make sure include your email when leaving a comment so I can contact the winners.
I’m posting again for US News & World Report’s On Careers blog!
Last week I wrote about how LinkedIn Groups can help you build relationships and discover companies/opportunities that may not be posted elsewhere. Read it here.
It’s a great place to connect with like-minded people. My search firm, Paradigm Staffing, created a PR & Communications Jobs Community (come join us!) where we post our open positions and give a place for PR professionals to connect and discuss PR and job search strategies and topics. In the recent months, a topic was posted about age discrimination in the PR industry and it sparked such a lively discussion that several of the group member have taken it offline to create their own cause-related PR firm!
Does your LinkedIn summary say something like ” Public relations professional with extensive experience working with innovative companies in the technology sector”? If so, it might be time to consider a revamp, according to LinkedIn.
Today, LinkedIn released the 2010 list of overused professional buzzwords. Here are the top 10 terms for United States professionals.
Proven track record
Using adjectives to describe your professional experience doesn’t tell the world anything about you. You’ll be much better off describing your experience with action verbs and describing your specific successes along the way. Karen Burns has some good advice on how to power up your resume (and it also works for your LinkedIn profile) and her own list of 50 buzzwords you shouldn’t use on your resume.
LinkedIn also has a few tips to help you get the most out of your profile. Completing your profiles means your are 12 times more likely to be viewed for new opportunities if you have more than one position listed on your profile. LinkedIn also suggests customizing your profile URL so it comes up in a Google search result for your name because most employers are doing a search before you interview.
I got an inquiry from a reader the other day after posting the article about Twitter to find a job article.
Using LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. does not seem to help find me leads. I have profiles posted, but no one contacts me whatsoever. What’s up with that?”
LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook aren’t the magic solution to your job search. The leads will not come pouring in because you have a profile up. You need to work at developing your network and improving your online visibility – before you need them for a job search. Social sites are a component of your job search toolbox. You must be proactive to make them work for you.
The value of networking online will never replace face-to-face networking. Some things are better in-person and networking is definitely one of them. That said, online networking has its purpose and is a powerful tool that should be integrated into your overall strategy when it comes to expanding and nurturing your professional network.
Considering geographical boundaries, time constraints, and personal obligations, online networking tools can help you quickly build a network that may have taken you years to build, if ever, any other way.
When we network in person, non-verbal cues help us interact with the other individual. We rely on all of our senses to engage in conversation and form opinions about moving the conversation to further stages. In the online world, we simply don't have as many sensory cues to rely on and, as a result, the game changes.
Autumn in New York full movie I do my fair share of online networking: LinkedIN, Twitter, Facebook, and blog commenting are my main tools. I also participate in a number of online groups and forums.
Here are a few personal tips I've found work well for me when it comes to networking effectively online....
What is the best way to go about contacting a company you would be interested in working for?
Email is by far the preferred method of companies and recruiters to show your interest and apply for an open position. If there is an open position and you don't have any connection with the company, I'd advise to go through the proper channels- follow the directions on the job descriptions and submit your resume and cover letter to the address provided by the company.
This is NOT where you should stop. Just because you submitted through the proper channels though doesn't mean you can't follow-up through other means. Some positions receives hundreds of resumes, only seen by the human resources department for an initial review and judgment. Other times your resume will be imported directly in the company's applicant tracking system which may only scan for keyword matches to rank the top candidates for the position.
If you are very interested in working for a particular company, you'll have to take it a few steps further. Search LinkedIn or Google search to find out who the hiring manager is and follow up directly to show your interest in a position. Many job descriptions state the reporting structure, if not, make your best guess. Finding out this information isn't difficult with a bit of extra effort. Sometimes a simple follow-up can determine whether you land the opportunity to interview or not. Surprisingly, few people take this step because they fear the risk of being too pushy or coming on too strong.
When following up electronically, your follow-up needs to be specific for the position and how you will add value. There is nothing more obvious than a blanket introduction and follow-up. State why specifically you want to work for the organization and how you will help them be successful.
If you have friends within the organization, an internal referral is always better than a submission through the website. Ask your contact to walk your resume into the hiring manager or HR department and follow up within a couple of days.
All of this takes time — a job search can be full-time job in itself. Putting in the extra effort will pay off in the end and set you apart from the majority who don't invest the time in the job search. This is part of an on-going series of candidate questions submitted through this blog. If you have a question you would like featured, please submit it here. Confidentiality is guaranteed.
LinkedInannounced last week the launch of its own applications platform. Now you can add ten different applications to share your work with your network: recent blog posts, your Amazon reading, upcoming trips, presentations, and other online collaboration tools. Here is a list and summary of the applications or watch the video below:
This is certainly not a new idea to anybody who is a regular user of Facebook or any of these tools. I'm surprised it took LinkedIn this long to launch an application platform (I'm still waiting on the an email toolbar for Mac - please LinkedIN, my productivity would benefit greatly with a similar toolbar for Apple Mail!).
Just because they are late to the game and I can use similar applications on Facebook, it doesn't mean I'm not going to use them on LinkedIn too. It is an invaluable tool in my job and I reach a varied audience in a much different way on LinkedIn than I do on other social networks. And I don't have to deal with invites from my network for silly applications I would never put on my page. Thank you!
Which applications are you using on LinkedIn? Has it changed how you are using the site?