Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Making the Most of LinkedIn®: A Guide for Beginners

This is a guest post written by Cicely Rude, a post-academic turned language consultant and coach. See her website here. Thanks for the awesome advice, Cicely!

LinkedIn® has become a powerful professional networking, job search, and career development tool with multilingual capabilities. Building a solid network of contacts is an important and ongoing part of career development. For that reason, I've created the following introduction to some of the ways that you can optimize your LinkedIn® profile, build your professional network, find your next job, and advance your career. It is written with multilingual as well as monolingual job seekers in mind. For more information read 13 Tips for Using LinkedIn to Find a Great Job.

What is LinkedIn? 

LinkedIn® is a professional networking website. As of June 2012, LinkedIn® reports more than 175 million registered users in more than 200 countries and territories. The site is available in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Romanian, Russian, Turkish, Japanese, Czech, Polish, Korean, Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia.


How can I make the most of LinkedIn®?

  • Create professional profiles and invite others to become connections, thus building a network of professional contacts. 

  • Create parallel profiles in multiple languages. 

  • Build a network of first, second, and third-degree contacts. 

  • Request introductions through the contact network. 

  • Find targeted jobs, companies, people, and business opportunities. 

  • Upload an online profile that showcases experience, projects, and skills

  • Gather recommendations for professional or academic work. 

  • Review the profiles of hiring managers and find contacts who can introduce them to you. 

  • Follow companies and receive notifications of new job postings. 


How about employers and recruiters? 

  • Employers list jobs and search for potential candidates. 

  • Recruiters search for people who match the requirements for particular jobs, then contact those people through LinkedIn®, so make sure your profile is fabulous, succinct, and current. 


Things to keep in mind when building a LinkedIn® profile:

  • Build a complete profile. 

  • Add names of schools you attended and companies you worked for, so the system can find possible connections. 

  • Include the dates during which you worked each job or attended each academic institution. 

  • Add the languages in which you are proficient, projects you have worked on, etc. 

  • Keep your profile current, even when not job-hunting. 

Cicely Rude
English Language, Culture and Curriculum Consultant

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