Why and how do you use LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is a fairly widely known professional networking platform, but have you ever really considered, how you use it? Do you take specific effort to keep it updated? Today, I’ll be discussing how I use LinkedIn.
First and foremost, I use LinkedIn as an online resume. While I am a consultant with a company, I still need a resume available that people can find. To keep it up to date, I usually make updates to my profile once a month. I don’t re-write everything, I just look for ways to improve and keep the information relevant. The benefit of keeping my profile updated is potential customers had a chance to look at my profile and get a good idea of the people that work at Digineer. This works the same people that are being recruited. My profile gives them an opportunity to get to know potential peers.
Now the same information that customers can find out about me, I like to find out about them. I can get a feel for the people I’ll work with on the next engagement. It helps to set expectations of what the strengths and weaknesses I might encounter with the staff at the client. Plus, when someone randomly walks by my cube, I might just recognize him as a the president of the company and take the opportunity for an introduction. In the end, it helps to show that you care about the work you will be doing because you took the time to see who you will be working with.
There are a great number of methods to network these days. There’s Facebook, Twitter, and Pintrest. With each of those platforms, the tendency is to become personal and include information about birthday’s, new cars, and your feelings on the latest political crisis. In many ways, the focus that LinkedIn places on resumes and career history help keep the platform focused on the professional side of your career. I use LinkedIn to connect to user groups, local professional groups, and other consultants that are looking for opportunities. Rather than letting this overflow into my other channels, LinkedIn helps me keep it all in one place.