The Do’s and Don’ts of Job Searching on LinkedIn

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Yes, LinkedIn can be the solution to your job searching woes, but wait right there. You need to get your profile up to snuff and put a game plan in place before you begin your LinkedIn job hunting campaign.

Here’s your guide for the right way to update or create your profile, build your network and use it to bring value to the LinkedIn community that will likely land you the perfect job.

Before You Do Anything

Before you do anything with LinkedIn, you want to take a complete inventory of your personal profile. When you reach out to anyone on this highly professional network, whether you know them personally or professionally, they are inclined to view your profile.

And other people (potential hiring managers, CEOs and HR directors) will see that person has viewed your profile, which often compels them to click on and view your profile. So make sure, before you do anything, that your profile not only adequately represents who you are, but is also on par with industry standards.

Start With Your Photo, Work Your Way Down

Don’t be fooled by the surprising number of completely unprofessional and informal Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn profile pictures out there. Your picture is the first and arguably most important step in establishing yourself as someone with aspirations and a positive self-image. You would be amazed at the professional-quality photos you can take with an iPhone and cheap tripod.

Add a Bluetooth wireless clicker and you won’t even need an assistant for this project. Remember that lighting and background are everything, and that for every flattering angle, a face has three unflattering ones. Practice adjusting your chin, tilting your head and adjusting your hair. It may take a few takes to get a great picture, but it will be worth it. Edit it on your phone easily with your camera’s editing feature.

Your Summary Shouldn’t Be too Short

Catherine Fisher, LinkedIn’s resident career expert, not only says profiles with a picture are 14 times more likely to be viewed, but also opines that summaries containing more than 40 words get substantially more page views and tend to pop up more in search results.

Be honest, be clear and stay away from overused buzzwords like “motivated” and “go-getter.” Instead, focus on listing your accomplishments and goals. If you truly have no idea where to start, look at the profiles of some colleagues and friends you admire, as well as CEOs of some companies in which you’d like to work or someone inspirational in your field.

Let the Networking Begin

Now that your profile is up to par, finding that perfect job is truly a numbers game. Reach out to people in your network and let them know you’re on the job hunt and what types of jobs and industries interest you. Actively seek out new connections once a week, and post information relevant to your field twice a week.

Don’t forget to “like,” share and comment on other posts as well. Be sure you are always bringing value to the LinkedIn community and it will welcome you with open arms. And, who knows, hopefully it will help you find your next perfect job!