LinkedIn is a powerful way to network and to find new employment opportunities – for MBA graduates and all kinds of business professionals. Of course, you need to use LinkedIn properly to maximize your odds of getting that next big MBA job in management.
Below are some key tips to maximizing the value of your LinkedIn profile.
Make sure you follow them!
#1 Have A Good Picture and Use Your Real Name
This might seem obvious, but having a good, high quality, professional picture of yourself on your LinkedIn account is very important. And of course you want to use your real name in your profile.
#2 Include a Profession
Even if you do not have a job at present, make sure that you have a profession in your profile. If you worked in insurance in the past, put Financial Services Professional. Or if you worked in accounting, write Fortune 500 Accountant. You do not need to say in the headline of your profile that you are unemployed. If you do not have a company name there, people assume that you are looking for a new business opportunity.
#3 Do Your Research Before Contacting People
When you want to reach out to a contact to look for a new opportunity, make sure you know what their job is and what their firm does. Do not assume from the name of the company that you know what their business is. Do some research first on Google. Knowing what business the person is in and what they actually do there will help you make a good impression.
#4 If You Want An Email Forwarded to Someone…
Make sure that that email contains the key information about you and is grammatically correct! Having someone introduce you to a third party by email is fine, but your email needs to be professional and helpful. State who you are, what you are looking for, and how to contact you.
#5 Be Specific About What Job You Want
Do not tell new LinkedIn contacts that you want any job in the field. You need to be specific. Show that you know what your skills are and explain how they match to a specific job opening at the company. It is very rare that you are going to get a job as a jack of all trades.
#6 No CCs on Job Requests
For each job request that you send in LinkedIn, make sure you send it to a specific person. Use that person’s name in the email. Do not CC 20 people at several different companies. You want your contacts to feel special, and that you are trying to land one job with that specific company.
#7 Ask for Recommendations With Caution
You should not ask for recommendations from people unless you have worked with them closely. LinkedIn now offers an endorsements section that is very easy to use. However, it is presumptuous to ask for an endorsement from someone unless you have a good deal of work experience with that person.
#8 Do Not Send Surveys to Everyone
Unless you have worked closely with a LinkedIn contact, do not send out any surveys that ask for feedback on how you did your job. Asking someone who has who has not worked closely with you for feedback is not going to net you anything useful.
There is no doubt that the proper use of LinkedIn can be extremely effective in boosting the prospects for your new job hunt. You just need to make sure that you use LinkedIn in the right way, and this list will give you a great start.