A Guide on LinkedIn Connections and How to Grow Your Network

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A Guide on LinkedIn Connections and How to Grow Your Network

If you still don’t have an account on LinkedIn, hurry up and make it then, because LinkedIn is the largest social network for professionals in the world. This platform has around 400 million users and most importantly almost 77% of all vacancies available. You have to agree that registering there, sounds quite worthwhile.

Your dream work won’t find you by itself. You are pretty aware of that by now I believe. Unless you are one of those people that like to pretend that they are more than content working nine to five doing something they don’t enjoy. You don’t choose LinkedIn, but it can quite easily help others to choose you. All you can do is, place your resume wherever you possibly can. Quite a lot of people have a decent sized network but they still can’t use LinkedIn to its full potential. They think having a large network is what will land them a dream job. I say it’s your resume that will do it. If you want to know more on how to grow your network and open a door to new opportunities, keep on reading.

A Resume is a Base for Networking on LinkedIn

  1. The essential thing in a resume is to highlight your experience and skills that are most important for whatever profession you specialize in. For instance, for a salesman it would be necessary to show how much income he has generated for the company. For any technical and IT specializations it would be important to describe their skills in developing a product and their ability to use different techniques. If the person is in marketing then it would be advisable for them to present any projects they have worked on and so on.
  2. The key here is to formulate your strong attributes in a specific way such as this: “I achieved X in comparison to Y, because I was doing Z”. Majority of the people write in their resume something similar to this: “I wrote articles for the New York Times”. Instead it would be better to say: “I published 50 articles, because I deeply analyzed this particular field in a three year period. Even though, on average writers write only about six articles.” What you need to do is demonstrate a certain quality you have; in a form of a story that illustrates this quality and presents it at its finest. In addition, you have to explain how this quality will benefit the company you’d like to work for.
  3. An awesome resume is the one that’s build around success. There you can see a clear link between your education, your career path, all your training and certificates, personal traits and the job you’re looking for. All your accomplishments can be presented in a form of a benefit for your employer.

It’s essential that you spend a good amount of time developing your resume to its full potential. This is one step that you can’t rush, because this is the only asset that you have to impress your potential employees with.

  1. Do NOT forget about a picture. Many people think it’s enough to have everything filled out, but they forget that no one likes to be in contact with a person without knowing what they look like. Try uploading a picture that makes you look as professional as possible. It’s highly advisable for the head shot to be front-facing or at a slight angle, not more and for the background to be neutral or preferably white.
  2. NEVER mention the reasons why you were fired. No matter how unfair or legit the reason was, the recruiter doesn’t need to know these facts. All it might steer is suspicion as to why you’re trying to justify yourself. What if you’re lying?

Active Networking on LinkedIn

This should be an easy concept to grasp: you look for people that interest you and simply send them a request to join your network of contacts. Moreover, when you’re looking for a job, you should use keywords in the search field to make it easier and more specific. There is one con though; LinkedIn doesn’t allow to send requests to many people at once. In this case, what you can do is download an iOS or an Android app and add as many people as you like with a click of a button +add.

Moreover, LinkedIn has a tool called “actions taken”. This tool enables you to see what exactly helped you increase your engagement. For example, if you updated your profile or connected with others by sending invitations or messages, you will be able to see the results of these actions using that data set.

What is LinkedIn Rank and How it Affects Resume Views

LinkedIn Rank is a tool that affects the position of your resume in the ranking amongst your friends. The higher the ranking, the more your resume appears in the search, the more attention it attracts and more views. To increase your LinkedIn Rank you have to actively add new friends, continuously increase the Endorse of your skills; collect reviews from your previous employers and many other things. Basically be as engaging as possible.

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Simple Steps to Do It:

  • Search people according to keywords: for instance – CEO, co-founder, marketer, founder, writer, investor and so on.
  • Add locations to these keywords – New York, Los Angeles, Montreal, Toronto, London
  • Add anyone that pops up on the search in the app (do this occasionally, doesn’t have to be done constantly)
  • Whoever accepts your contact request, do an endorse of their skills. About 5% of those people will endorse you back, this in turn will work as a proof to your skills.
  • Fill out every possible section there is on your page. Get as many reviews and feedback as possible from your previous employers, fill out your educational background, attach your articles, re-write your summary.
  • Reply to everyone that writes you a message. If you take the steps mentioned previously, in a short period of time you will start receiving messages from people. People will come with all sorts of offers, like interviews, general interest in your skills, simple offers in case you need any help etc.

Endorse Other People’s Skills

Another great technique is to endorse other specialists when visiting their profile. Endorse – is a confirmation of someone’s skills and that person’s competency on LinkedIn.

For instance, you know that “Will” knows a lot about management, restaurant business and a few other fields. You confirm their experience and skills simply by clicking on the plus next to those skills on their profile.  Their skill gets ranked better and your picture appears as a social proof.

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Your aim is to confirm experience and skills of EVERY person that you add to your contacts. At least 5% of them will return the favor and endorse you as well. This is exactly what you need.

When you’ll gain 10 or more endorsements for your skills, people will start doing it without your active involvement.

Passive Networking on LinkedIn

Pay Attention to the Summary Section

For the recruiters to find you easily you have to create an awesome summary. Summary – is the first 5 fields of your resume. If what’s written there doesn’t attract attention, then HR-managers (and anyone else for that matter) are not going to pay attention to the rest of the resume.

Without an interesting and attractive summary all your active networking will be left unrewarded even if you add ten thousand people on LinkedIn.

This is the most important part of your profile. Work hard on it!

To write a good summary follow these simple steps:

  • Write about who you are
  • What tools and techniques you possess
  • What are your expectations (who should pay attention to your resume, what type of employees, with what offers, and what are your preferences)

However, the rest of the profile is just as important, so you have to fill it out carefully as well – adding your skills, publications, rewards etc.

Keywords, Or How to Appear In the Search

There are hundreds of keywords out there for any specific niche. Recruiters search each specialization according to those keywords. You have to look up the keywords that are specific to your needs. When you find them, you have to add them to the description of your first job (at the bottom of the resume) separate those keywords by three stars ***.

To Conclude: LinkedIn Actually Works!

If you’re facing any difficulties finding a job or attracting interesting clients or partners – go on LinkedIn right now and fix your resume. Many people in the professional world know the value of this platform. However, not many from the less formal backgrounds understand the potential it has in store for them. Writers and creative people need rethink their views on using LinkedIn.

Make sure every field is filled out and descriptive. Be as engaging as possible. Reach out to everyone you can. Be consistent and you will see results.

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