How to Utilize LinkedIn for Networking
LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, has more than 380 members in over 200 countries. If you’re not using this site for all it’s worth, you’re missing out on an incredible opportunity to reach beyond traditional networking boundaries.
Below are five ways to get the most from your presence on the site.
Create a comprehensive profile.
You can’t expect anyone to network with you if they don’t understand what you do. LinkedIn provides you with ample space to expand on your resume, so use it! Upload a professional-quality headshot, write a catchy headline, describe your skills, detail your past work experience, share information on projects you’ve worked on, accomplishments, education and more. According to LinkedIn, a 100% complete profile is 40 times more likely to receive opportunities through the site.
Join relevant groups.
Meet new people who may be able to help your career by joining groups of like-minded professionals. You can find groups for just about anything on LinkedIn, such as those promoting a certain skill, profession, industry, geographic area, or educational institution. After joining, be sure to start and participate in discussions to get your name out there. Many groups have hundreds or thousands of members, so you’ll need to make an effort to be an active contributor if you want to meet people who might be able to help your career.
Build your network by looking for people you already know — current and previous colleagues, classmates, professors, clients, friends, family, etc. — and sending connection requests. You never know who might be connected to someone who could prove valuable to your career. LinkedIn shows the degree of separation between yourself and other users when you click on their profile, so make the most of this feature. If you find an industry professional you haven’t had the opportunity to meet, but would like to connect with, send a personalized message with your request to increase your chances of having it accepted.
Be actively engaged.
Stay on the minds of your connections by sharing regular status updates to ensure your profile does not become stagnant. Make a point to post an interesting article at least once per week, so it shows up in their feeds. It’s also a great idea to regularly endorse your connections for skills you can vouch for and write recommendations, as people are likely to return the favor. Remember to update your profile anytime you have an exciting professional accomplishment to share — even if it’s just a new skill.
Request informational interviews.
Get your foot in the door while becoming better acquainted with your connections by requesting informational interviews. Choose people working at companies you’re interested in joining or holding positions you think you would like to have someday. This is a great way to get information from an inside source and make a connection who may be willing and able to help you achieve your career goals. People like to recommend those they already know for positions, so if your newfound connection hears of an opportunity that you might be interested in, there’s a good chance they’ll pass it along.
LinkedIn is a platform offering invaluable networking opportunities, so take advantage of all it has to offer. If you would like to learn more about how we can help you find your next behavioral health position, contact us today at (513) 651-9500 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.