LinkedIn for Executive Job Search

news_flashYesterday I presented LinkedIn as an executive job search tool to a packed house at St. Chrysostom’s Employment Council (the the Career Transitions Network). It was interesting to focus LinkedIn on a new area of human endeavor, getting a new job.

We had a lively discussion, which I’ll recap briefly before providing links to additional information pertinent to our discussion.

How Web 2.0 and LinkedIn Are Changing Job Search

  • Web 2.0 and LinkedIn enable job seekers to find people with very specific characteristics with unprecedented ease and to engage them in conversations. It used to be that finding people was the challenge (an information problem). Now the challenge is getting someone’s attention and engaging him/her in a meaningful conversation.
  • We are rapidly moving to an expertise economy in which job tenures and consulting assignments increasingly resemble each other.
  • LinkedIn profiles should differ from resumes; emphasize what you want to do, make sure you weave in keywords that relate to what you’re looking for. People don’t read LinkedIn profiles like resumes. Although you don’t want to be verbose, length is not so much of a problem as long as you are adding value.
  • Being specific is the name of the game; if you are too general, you are invisible.
  • LinkedIn Answers is an excellent way to help people with the very specific passions you have around the work you’re looking for. By helping others in LinkedIn Answers, you draw attention to yourself.
  • Whether for getting assignments or new jobs, having a network of trusted experts around you can be the most valuable asset. Your LinkedIn network can be very powerful, but most people have not built their networks with purpose. It’s never too late to remodel! ,^)

LinkedIn offers executives a two-fold value proposition:

  • As individuals, they can be more effective at hitting the ground running by drawing on the advice of their networks; they can find and negotiate new positions more quickly
  • As managers (within companies, community of any kind), they can be leaders in helping people to understand LinkedIn and other Web 2.0 venues; understanding Web 2.0 will be critical to the competitiveness of all organizations in the years ahead
  • adviceLinkedIn offers robust controls for how other members may interact with you (or not). Learn to use them with the Review of LinkedIn (below)
  • Paid accounts give you access to the best of the entire LinkedIn network of 22 million people, which can be useful if you are trying to find and connect with people outside your network (as in job search). Depending on your LinkedIn goals, consider the different account types (see the “Unofficial Guide..”, below).
  • LinkedIn offers numerous tools to enable you to keep in touch with a large number of people: Status Visibility lets you offer a quick note to 1st level connections, you learn when people change jobs or anything about their profiles, who is connecting with whom, etc. All these things increase your ability to offer or ask for help of your connections.
  • It is very useful to think in terms of key processes, so you can improve your effectiveness significantly, just like in any other critical work process.
  • Build your LinkedIn network with purpose, and consider where your natural comfort level is between tight and loose ties.
  • Use the Executive’s Guide to Linkedin Action Templates to create a LinkedIn plan (see “Unofficial” Guide, below). Just like sales or business management, managing your LinkedIn activity with a plan will lead to better results.
  • Recommendations, Answers and Groups open new ways to connect with people. Note several resources below.

LinkedIn Resources for Job Search

4 comments to LinkedIn for Executive Job Search

  • Teresa

    will you be offering another Linkedin training session??

  • Hi Teresa, thanks for writing and for your interest. I am planning the fall calendar right now, but I don’t have any firm dates yet. The best way to make sure that you don’t miss one is to subscribe to this blog (see “subscribe,” left). My subscribers are always the first to know! Also, I always consider new groups and would appreciate your suggestions for executive gatherings. Lastly, check out the links in this post; I’d love to hear from you about how easy/not you find them. All the best-

  • Hi Chris – I want to reply to a job posting and request an introduction to a ‘confidential’ company. I clicked on request an introduction and 24 pages of people popped up. Am I supposed to just choose one or am I missing something? Thanks for your help.

  • Christy, yes. What I would do is click “refine search results” and search the 24 pages by relevant terms to hone in on 2/3 people who could make an effective intro between your background and the job’s focus. Using search terms, whittle the results down to 3/4 pages, then click through to the referrers’ profiles. Look at the Answers they have given to check their style; would they be able to intro you the way you want? Please write back and let me know how this works!

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