Are You Linked In?

By now, you know that LinkedIn is a great resource for professionals in a job search.  It’s a great way to enhance your in-person networking.  One of the weaknesses of personal networking is that you meet only the person you meet.  You might get to chat with him or her for a few minutes at a professional or social event; you might even, in that short time, get to know what he does or where she works.  What you don’t get to know (much) about is who she knows.  Each of us is valuable as a contact, but it’s our network of contacts that really adds value when people meet us.

So you might learn that Rick is the production foreman at a local manufacturer. But he might never mention that he used to work with an industrial engineer who’s now with the very company you’re pursuing.  LinkedIn provides a way to connect with people you meet – and their former companies, colleagues and connections.

In its jobseeker tips, LinkedIn stresses the value of making sure that your network represents your real connections.  The site says: When your network represents those you know and trust, you can utilize them for recommendations, and ask for introductions into a job or opportunity that you are interested in.”

LinkedIn also touts its ability to give you an “inside connection” to get access to company or job you are interested in. When you browse to a job listing on LinkedIn Jobs, you can see which of your connections are at that company. Leverage these connections to help you find the right contacts at the company you are interested in.

You can also use the Advanced Search to find a user by keywords or companies. You can directly contact users through inMails or request an introduction through one of your contacts if you have common connections.  The site also recommends that you use it to research your recruiters or interviewers. You can learn more about their background to have an edge over the other candidates.

Find more jobseeker tips from LinkedIn here.

Next:  Mistakes to Avoid on LinkedIn.

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