One of the most valuable tools you have as a professional is your Linkedin Network. Whether you’re looking for new job opportunities, or simply maintaining your professional contacts and trying to build a reputation in your field, LinkedIn is a network that is geared around your needs as a professional, rather than Facebook’s events and organising or Twitter’s microblogging.
There are two different ways to manage your LinkedIn presence, depending on whether you are looking for a new job, or happy in your current role but trying build a network and reputation. We’ll take a brief look at both today.
If you’re trying to find your next job, you need to stack your LinkedIn profile in your favour. Think strategically and use adverts for the sorts of jobs you want to identify key words that you want recruiters to find in your profile. Pick a shortlist of three, for example ‘senior accountant’, ‘AAT Qualified’ and ‘Profit Analysis’. This will ensure you appear high on the results for any Executive Recruitment Firm looking for highly qualified Accounting Executives specialising in sustainable expansion.
You should also make sure you have an attention-grabbing tagline, as it’s the first thing a recruiter will see on your profile. Make sure it’s punchy, and uses at least one of your key terms: this will reassure a searcher that they’ve found the right person.
Building a Network
If you’re not using your LinkedIn profile to look for jobs, it can be a potent tool to build your professional network and create a reputation for yourself in your field.
Reach out and connect with existing colleagues and professional friends to start your network, and then build outwards from there. Be enthusiastic but discriminating: choose relevant mutual friends who it would be useful to connect.
When you have a strong web of people who you’re professionally connected with, you can use LinkedIn’s blogging and publishing functions to start becoming more of a presence. Try to publish short articles regularly, so reading them becomes part of the rhythm of people’s week. Sharing insights in your field, and commenting on other people’s articles means you will start to be recognised as a trusted voice in your field, building your reputation.
If the day comes when you too are searching for your next job, this time spent building your reputation among your professional peers will pay off.