Why to use LinkedIn while employed
By Kathy Bernard
Many people make the mistake of thinking that LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com — the world's largest professional network) is only for people looking for a job. It actually is a terrific resource for employed people.
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.
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