I've had several people ask me about the purpose of using LinkedIn. There are so many reasons to use LinkedIn. Here is just a bit of insight into who and how...
Who should use it?
As I see it: job seekers (both active and passive), recruiters, and anyone looking to network.
This covers nearly all business professionals. Aren't we all looking for that next big opportunity?
How do you use it?
First, sign up and complete your profile with accurate information
The more complete your profile the easier it will be for others to find you, plus when you initiate a conversation with someone, the first thing they will do is check your profile.
Second, find current contacts and other like-minded individuals. Upload your contact list:
Go to the Find People tab on the site. The search box will give you several options, zip code, industry, or job title are the most commonly searched.
Then, if your a job seeker: a) look at the job postings, b) search the discussions for people discussing positions in your field, c) look for individuals in your network (or extended network) that work for companies you'd like to apply to, d) ask for introductions from friends to people in your extended network that work in your field or industry.
If you are a passive job seeker: a)fill out your profile completely, b)you don't need to say your looking for a job, but make sure you don't say your not, c)continue to grow your network by adding everyone you know.
If you are a recruiter: a)subscribe and pay (so you can send emails to anyone qualified you find - even if they are out of your network), b)post positions, c)start discussion forums talking about the various positions/skills your looking for, d)search job seekers, e)build your network and ask for introductions to make it as large as possible, f)do advanced searches to find people with desired skill sets.
If networking is part of your job: a)upload your contact list, b)connect with everyone whose business card you possess, c)make lists and categorize your contacts, d)search your network for the types of customer contacts you desire and ask for introductions if they are out of your network, e)start discussions with relevant topics related to your customer.
We provide training for professionals on how to leverage LinkedIn and other social media tools. If you are interested in learning more contact our office at 847-767-7978.