Why LinkedIn is Your Best Friend

Reading a new report on social media this morning

I see that 80% of companies are using social media for their recruitment and 95% of those 80% use LinkedIn. Do you have a profile? Are you keeping it up-to-date?
As a headhunter, my team used LinkedIn every day. My researcher would run searches against current vacancies we had and see which candidates looked the best fit as a starting point to our creation of a shortlist. I am not the only one that does this, talking to industry colleagues it seems we are all at it!
So, what does your profile say about you and what should it say? I know you need to be discreet because you might be linked to your colleagues or even your current boss. You may not be keeping your profile updated because you are not currently looking for a new role / project / opportunity. But what about that dream job? The fact you are reading this article would indicate to me that your current role and your dream are still two separate entities. So you may have made a decision to do what you are doing for another two years, or six months, or seven days before you start looking, but what about if the role you dream about is seeking you?
One of the great joys to me about all social media is that what I want is invariably able to find me (and surprisingly often does) via my online profiles and pages. This takes so much work and effort out of getting what you want. You don’t have to think about every avenue and option, some of them can think about you instead!
So, let’s look at creating your profile. Well, it should be aimed at selling YOU. That is your purpose if you want a new opportunity. Explaining the ins and outs of the product you are responsible for is fabulous if you want to make product sales or if you are the product developer, but really you are missing the opportunity to sell yourself. So start with your overview; who are you and what do you do that is unique to you? What is it about you and your skills and experience that would make you attractive to a potential prospect?
Now your professional experience; pasting your job spec gives someone an idea of your tasks but tells them nothing about your ability. What have you done in your role? What are your achievements? What do you contribute to your team / Company? What have you been commended for? What do people consult you about? What are your special skills that only you bring to your current organisation? Everyone knows what a Finance Director does, what they want to know is how YOU do it and if that makes you a potential match for them.
Then, a key thing, make your profile visible to all. Having a wonderful profile and keeping it secret is as useful to you as having no profile at all. Set your privacy settings so that as many people as possible can see you and make sure there are some great ways to contact you listed too. After all, you want to make getting in touch easy.
If you want help creating a profile that will attract a prospective employer, or their headhunter, get in touch. We can definitely help you get noticed!
This article was the basis for a chapter of our book; Clickst@rt Your Career.
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