LinkedIn Changes Coming – Help Clients Stay Ahead of the Curve

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By Lysa Appleton.

Firstly, Happy New Year!  I just love new beginnings and the excitement of new possibilities that comes with a clean slate.  Yet, new beginnings also guarantee change, and one of those changes is the new design and configuration of LinkedIn, with more changes to come during the 1st quarter of 2017.  So, if your clients have not already done so, suggest they request a data backup of their profile from LinkedIn so that in the event of a major shift, their information does not go AWOL.  They can get the instructions for this here:

Aside from these changes, LinkedIn is growing both as a social networking site and as a job search tool.  With over 460 million users, it is also a vast talent pool for recruiters and HR people seeking out specific talent.  Therefore, it is worth encouraging our clients to use this platform as an essential career management tool, ensuring that they are not only on LinkedIn, but that they also optimize it.

The best way to do this is to follow the three “R’s” – Relationships | Research | Reciprocity

Research:  Lets encourage them to use LinkedIn for researching jobs, companies, industries and individuals.  They can also use it as a great tool for connecting with recruiters, talent acquisition people and HR folks from different companies that they have applied to.  The advanced search option can also be used to narrow down results and strategically find people that can add value to their network, job search and long-term career plan.  In addition to these things, they can also use LinkedIn to create a target list of companies to proactively reach out to, in addition to finding groups to join that can expand their network, add professional value and enhance their visibility.

Relationships:  We can also show our clients how to effectively connect with people.  Beyond trying to connect through LinkedIn itself, our clients can often directly reach out to people by clicking on the “Contact” tab to see if they have listed other contact information such as an email address or Twitter handle.  They can pull connections into their network by reading a bit about them and then crafting a customized invitation while keeping their current network engaged , and by sending interest pieces, witty cartoons, personalized messages around landing a new role, work anniversaries, etc…

Reciprocity:   LinkedIn is not just about expanding scope of networks, but about building strength of networks; fostering relationships that can be beneficial for long term employability and overall career health.  We can encourage our clients to build these relationships through give and take, in mailing key people periodically and sending them something of professional value, or keeping people who are making introductions or helping our candidates with their job search in the loop as to how things are progressing.  It also means “paying it forward when others reach out to them for help”.  However, the simplest way of showing reciprocity is for them to actively use their status bar to share something of professional value, contributing to a discussion in one of their groups, or posting an informative blog on LinkedIn’s Pulse.

To be successful on LinkedIn, it is essential that our clients are visible and that their brand is clearly understood with a strong headline, customized LinkedIn URL and an engaging summary.  I believe that if our clients actively practice the 3 “R’s” persistently and consistently to optimize this tool, they will generate the 4th “R”, Results.

Wishing you a blessed new year filled with all good things, and a successful week!


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