- How many letters do you have after your name that are relevant to what you do now?
- Are these letters recognizable to the average person?
- Do you use these credentials to do exactly what you want to do in your career?
- Was your training academic or was it focused on a specific career or business goal?
- Did you feel it was necessary to have the certifications and training to do or provide services doing what you love?
- How many “Add to Cart” trainings have you purchased and never completed or implemented? (You know the ones I mean – they state a value of $499 and are slashed to $59)
- How much of what you’ve learned through your certifications and training have provided a step by step structure or format to follow for you to feel confident in offering your services to others?
- Are you still struggling to figure out how to put all your training and education together with clarity and focus?
Thank you to my team who helped to make it happen and thanks to Linkedin for including me in the rollout of this new program.
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However, there are some instances where you’ll want to reach out to people who are not at all connected to your existing network and are, in your estimation, Very Important People. Your VIPs may include recruiters, hiring managers, senior executives at prospective employers or “stars” in your industry.
If you’re ready to network several rungs up the career ladder, here are some tips:
1. Ensure that your profile makes a great first impression. VIPs are busy people, so if they receive a LinkedIn message from you and decide to check out your LinkedIn profile, chances are they’ll only spend a few seconds reviewing it. This means your profile has to be stellar.
First, craft a profile headline that is very specific and sells your skills and uniqueness, such as “Deadline-driven copywriter with 10+ years of experience at top-tier ad agencies.” Next, make sure your profile is 100% complete so a potential employer can quickly understand your education, experience and key skills. Finally, quadruple check your profile for typos, grammar mistakes or “red flags” such as outdated certifications or unexplained gaps in your experience.
2. Do your research on each VIP. Before reaching out to anyone, but particularly to a VIP, thoroughly review the person’s LinkedIn profile. Take note of anything you have in common with this person, any recent changes in his or her employment or any recent status updates that might give you something to mention in your outreach. Doing your homework will increase your confidence and will ensure that you don’t make any big mistakes (such as asking the person what it’s like to work at a company he just left).
3. Write a “must-open” InMail subject line. If you have no connections in common with this VIP (and, therefore, cannot ask for an introduction from someone in your network), you will need to reach out by using an InMail credit (part of the Job Seeker Premium account upgrade). Since the VIP will not recognize your name, you must write a subject line that compels the person to open your message. Here are a few suggestions:
- Mention something you have in common, such as an alma mater, hometown, professional association membership or personal interest. For instance, if you recently attended the same event as the person, you might write, “Question from fellow attendee of recent lumber expo in Chicago.”
- Offer information. If after reading a VIP’s LinkedIn profile you come across an article the person might want to read or an event the person might want to attend, this information could be the key to connecting. For instance, your subject line might read, “Thought you might enjoy this article on special education in Africa.” (Just be sure it’s not a commonly known article or that the person hasn’t shared it on her own LinkedIn status!)
- Answer a specific request. If the VIP is a recruiter or executive who has specifically mentioned a job opening, then be clear that you are responding to that opportunity. For example, “Candidate for sales manager position you mentioned on WXXX radio this morning.” In this case, there’s no need to beat around the bush!
Here are a few reasons why:
1. Having a strong LinkedIn profile and a sizable network on the site can make you appear as a more successful and qualified employee to your current supervisors and coworkers. It also shows your colleagues that you get ‘social media” and new technologies.
2. By listing your company as your current employer in your LinkedIn profile and by interacting professionally with others through the site, you personify your company’s brand in a positive way. Such a strong online presence will also impress potential customers and business partners with whom you connect on LinkedIn.
3. By joining LinkedIn groups, you can learn a tremendous amount of valuable information related to your position, field or industry through articles posted on group discussion boards.
For example, I joined several LinkedIn groups involving social media to learn how to use Twitter, Facebook and other social networking sites. I joined LinkedIn fundraising groups to learn how to generate more donations for a nonprofit organization. LinkedIn features nearly 1.4 million different topical groups so there are sure to be groups that can help you strengthen your professional abilities and increase your business knowledge. You can also join groups associated with your company, college, volunteer organizations, local clubs, and national associations, which can help you appear more active and engaged in your company and community.
Plus, by being in groups with thought leaders in your industry or field, you can learn who the leaders are, become familiar with their viewpoints, correspond with them via the group discussion boards, and invite them to connect to strengthen the relationship.
Tips 4-6 and complete article
Posted By: Kelsey Meyer
LinkedIn is the new résumé. If you’re applying for a job and you send me a résumé via email, I’m going to do a Google search of your name before I even download the attached résumé. The reason I do this is because I trust your online professional brand more than I trust your perfectly formatted, proofread, and scented résumé, and for our professional branding company, how you present yourself online is important.
LinkedIn shows me everything I need to decide whether or not I want to invite you in for an interview. Here’s an overview of what I look for in the different sections of LinkedIn, and what each tells me about you as a potential employee:
You have a full and active LinkedIn account.
This shows me that you understand new technology (even though LinkedIn isn’t really that new) and that you are actively positioning yourself as a professional in the online space.
Your LinkedIn profile photo is not of you drinking/doing illegal activities.
Again, this shows your professionalism. Leave the boozed-up photos for Facebook, or just leave them out altogether.
You have relevant experience and descriptions of what you did at each job.
This is basically the “meat” of your résumé. It tells me what you’ve done before, how long you did it, and what you learned from it that could potentially add value to my company. This is one area where LinkedIn is way more effective than a résumé. I can actually click through and read about the company from your profile. I can see who else works there and contact them about you – rather than simply contact your references, who are obviously people guaranteed to say nice things.
You have Organizations/Associations/Publications and Groups listed on your profile.
All of these sections accomplish the same goal: They show me if you are passionate enough about your field to get involved in organizations, write for publications, and network with other individuals. I like seeing people who are involved in a few LinkedIn groups, have published a few articles, and are actively engaged in different associations. It tells me that they live their professional brand longer than the 8-to-5 most jobs require.
You have many solid recommendations. – Read about recommendations and the complete article